As a solopreneur and self-employed mum of twins, maintaining balance between work and time off is at the heart of my mission.
As an online entrepreneur, my work is flexible. In theory, it is perfect for combining work with family life, providing me with the chance to run my own empire and be here to pick the girls up from school and spend as much time with them as I can.
However, an online business never sleeps. My clients are global, in a variety of time zones, and demands on our attention via social media, emails and communications is more saturated than ever before.
Here are some practical steps to stay focused on business and to create some balance in your work and life:
Automation can be a fabulous way of creating some space and helping you to work more efficiently. Schedule your blog posts and social media updates so you only need to step in occasionally for live updates. Use automated email replies to set expectations of when you might reply during busy periods, and use IFTTT to set up some recipes for updates and tasks that happen regularly.
Manage expectations of clients and colleagues by being clear about how you work. Explain in your email footers, auto responders, on your blog and in your FAQs your office hours, time to respond to emails, availability and ways of working.
Using an online calendar eliminates inbox clutter and makes appointment booking easy and efficient. Services such as Schedule Once link with your calendar to allow clients to choose a service and book into windows of time you allocate for online meetings. Block out time you are with your family or focussing on projects so you can stay in control of your time.
Consider using a VA (virtual administrator) for a few hours a week to deal with admin and communication tasks. VAs are independent contractors who work from their own base and help multiple clients with administrative, creative and technical services. You can contract a VA for a few hours every week or just to help out when you’re really stretched.
Take a digital detox
Taking a digital detox is a healthy practice. Set boundaries around your online presence, and step away from the Wifi for periods of time to let your brain decompress and your stress levels reduce. Consider a detox for a day, a weekend, or a week – if you are bold! Stay in the moment with yourself, your family and your sanity!
Work in chunks
Divide tasks into chunks and use the Pomodoro Technique to get laser focussed and super productive to make the most of your working time.
For more tips on smart tech, solopreneur life and productivity, join my FREE private Facebook group for members of my mailing list: dexterousdiva.co.uk/joinme/