How to find time to get a life

Over Stressed?  Over Worked?  NO VACATIONS???
Time is valuable.  Time isn’t just money, it is your life

When you are working 70-80 hours per week and don’t take a vacation, then you aren’t running your business… your business is running you. Being overworked make you less effective in the long run.

A new business will inevitably require a lot of your work, and you are vital as the owner.  However, there should reach a point – sooner rather than later – that you should be able to step back a bit and have some time to yourself (and your family.)
Here are some tips for any small business owner (restaurant, salon, mechanic, grocer, fashion – you name it) on how to have a life AND a business:

**  Keep specific hours:  If you need to, you can give yourself one exception per week.  Be realistic when setting your hours, so that you CAN actually keep to them.  In addition to making sure you aren’t TOO overworked, adhering to set working hours makes it easier for the other people in your life to make their schedules, too.

**  Be inaccessable to people other than your clients/customers and your employees. Vendors and Sales people should not get your time, request all offers in writing so you can skim them over in your free time (bathroom reading, anyone?)

**  Keep all meetings/interviews to a set time, and never go over.  If it looks like it’s going over, schedule a follow-up meeting.  Don’t let your schedule get out of sync.  This will help motivate you (and the other party) to stay on topic.  In my experience, meetings that last over an hour rarely stay on topic.

**  Don’t Hoard Paperwork.  Set aside time daily to review paperwork.  For each piece of mail, decide: act/file/trash.

**  Delegate.  Most small business owners are scared of delegating – conquer the fear!  A quick way to shave off of your working hours is to hire an assistant for adminstrative work (if you haven’t already).  Depending on the amount of paperwork/record keeping in your business, you might just need someone to put in a few hours a week. If you think about it, you will realize, that a lot of the work is repetative and could even be done by a talented High School student looking for some extra cash.

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