I’ve been my own boss now for 8 years. 8 years of having to answer to no one but me!!! And those 8 years have certainly been a rollercoaster and a HUGE learning curve as well. After two weeks off due to illness and school holidays, it got me thinking today about the pressures of working for yourself and how sometimes it can feel like a huge weight. So, if you are having/have had one of those days, I thought this might help.
Remember You Are Your Own Boss
Being your own boss is fab isn’t it! But sometimes, it can be incredibly overwhelming too. There’s no one there to ask ‘is this the right way to do it?’ or to pass the buck when you need someone else to take the heat off you. So, instead of getting down about the hard stuff. Focus on the good stuff! “I can do this however I want to”. “No one is watching me to see if I’m up to the job”. “I did this all on my own and it’s amazing!”. You are doing a great job!!!
2. You Can’t Do Everything
I’m a sucker for business books/courses/blog posts that give me great ideas about how I can grow my business. Without trashing them too much (because I am one of those course creators!), you don’t have to do everything! Pick the ones that will work best for your business. Maybe give yourself a few things each month to put in to action, rather than trying to do it all at once. Then give yourself a nice reward when you achieve it. Also, I’ve found outsourcing to be a godsend!! And it doesn’t have to be expensive. I’ve realised that it is far cheaper to pay a bookkeeper than it is to spend the time doing it myself, when I could be billing my clients for that time! There are also lots of virtual assistants out there who can take on tasks for you by the hour or project. You can’t do everything, so stop trying!
3. It’s Up To You What To Do
And the great thing is, it’s completely up to you how you run your business. Some of the most successful businesses started with one woman/man doing it the unconventional way. You don’t have to follow a formula. Do it your way! I sometimes panic that I’m not running my business how others are. Then I realise it’s my business, so that’s fine!!
4. Enjoy the Flexibility
This has to be one of the biggest advantages of working for yourself right? After I had my first daughter, I dropped my working days to two days a week (give or take), and have only recently increased that to three days (so long as people stop having events they want me to speak at on Mondays and Fridays!). It means that I get to drop off and pick up my eldest from school a couple of days a week. And that I get to spend two extra days a week with my littlest (though don’t get me wrong, work is sometimes a more appealing option than spending the day with a two-year old!!). It also means that sometimes, I take some time for me. I go get my hair done. Or I fit in a gym session in the middle of the day. It does mean I occasionally have to sit with my laptop on my knee in the evenings, but it is definitely so worth it for the time I get back. You’ve got to enjoy that freedom (so long as you’ve earned it of course, by being productive in the time you do work!).
5. You Don’t Have To Be Aiming To Be The Next Big Thing
This is also another one I sometimes struggle with. Other than breaks to have my two kids, I’ve steadily seen my business grow over the 8 years. But, that growth is relative to where I want my business to be. I’ll be honest, right now I don’t want to employ anyone. It works really well for me to outsource what I need to and do the rest myself, without having the headaches that come with employing. It means my business can’t grow beyond a certain level. But I’m cool with that! I’m achieving the success I desire right now, while getting to spend time with my kids, and that’s amazing!
I really hope this gives you a boost if you ever have a ‘why am I doing this?’ day!!