After a difficult week last week — besides feeling exhausted while keeping up with a hectic pace daily and in the face of one particular disappointment, this week, I am very grateful to have landed two new customers and I feel a lot more positive.
Do you bend over backwards for your customers to have your efforts overlooked? I go to the end of the earth to make sure my customers are happy, but as in any relationship, our efforts as entrepreneurs are not always recognised or appreciated.
As entrepreneurs, we have to constantly find ways to renew ourselves, keep up our energy and engage with our customers, while still delivering quality work which keeps our customers satisfied. It is a lot to balance with our own physical, mental and emotional needs. How can we do this successfully? Here are a couple things that I try to do. I am a work in progress so none of it is perfect, but I keep trying.
1) We can work on our mindset. How do we maintain the right mindset? I do this by connecting with other like-minded professionals either through checking in with a coach or other colleagues in my field from time to time. Attending industry events and being a part of business and health (spiritual, physical and mental) groups online has been a really good way to connect with people who understand the challenges unique to our industry and who are also balancing life’s challenges.
2) Remain positive — even in the face of challenges, which we continually face, know that there is a bigger picture and even if we can’t see it at the time, thinking about what is possible tricks the brain into finding solutions to problems which can seem insurmountable at the time.
3) Be persistent. The rewards that come from persistence, having a work plan and sticking to it, regardless of the current circumstances, make it possible to keep going during the difficult times.
4) Take breaks and holidays — whatever the form — away from your regular routine. One thing I have not been practicing enough due to the pandemic, but which is also critical to refreshing myself, is scheduling time off. I know from experience that this allows my energy and creativity to be renewed and allows me to pick back up and continue doing what I love with renewed vigour.
5) Gratitude for my support system has and continues to be a very important practice in maintaining a positive mindset. ‘No man is an island’ rings true especially now when we are asked to physically distance, so staying socially connected becomes even more important during challenging times like these. If we can recognise everything in our lives that is going well, it makes room for more good things to happen.
6) Staycation activities are key. Even though our borders are still closed here in Trinidad, we live in such a beautiful country that it would be a shame not to participate in some local tourism activities. As I write this, we are now faced with many more restrictions in movement due to the current spike in C-19 cases, so this will take some creativity — learn a new recipe, colour, draw, dance, spend time in nature, pray, meditate, hug those in your household. Tap into what makes you happy.
7) Structure the work day and officially sign off once the work day has ended. This means intentionally having a start and end time. For many of us who work from home, separating work time from personal or family time is not easy. This has been a big challenge for me because it is so easy to go into work mode as an idea jumps into my head, because I want to act on it immediately. This results in less time for social and family activities or just much needed rest time.
8) Sleep – everybody needs it, albeit in different amounts. Figure out how many hours of sleep you need and consistently make an effort to get quality sleep every night. I know how much I need and I’m still working on getting enough of it.
What are your go-to activities to create and maintain work-life balance? Share them with me in the comments.