So you’ve just become mama to a brand new business baby. Congratulations! That’s fantastic and exciting news, and no doubt it takes a lot of time to grow it into a walking, talking and fully functioning business. Balancing work and play with your new baby can be a real challenge, and just like human babies can leave us feeling tired, and forgetting the world around us, your business baby can do the same thing. Here we share 6 top tips to help you cope with your ‘business baby brain’:
1. Don’t Forget your Friends
Getting your business up and running smoothly will require a lot of help and support from your friends, so don’t forget about them. You’ll lose hours working on content, getting the design elements just right, or dealing with customers, and it will be easy for things to slip your mind. Try not to let important friendships slide though. True friends will understand when you are under pressure, but it’s important that when you can, you do make time for them.
The business baby stage can be one of the loneliest periods we go through, having to miss family time, holidays or events. Try to keep perspective though, because you’ll want your friends to be excited and celebrate the wins, or offer support when you need it. Involve them in at least part of the journey so they don’t feel totally left out.
The ancient Greeks believe that a man remains immortal, so long as his friends remember him. Try to keep this in mind before deciding which events to skip out on, and think about how you’d feel if you were on the receiving end of a potential rejection or no show.
2. Don’t Make it all about you
Your business may be super important and exciting for you right now, and that’s great, but it doesn’t have to be that way for everyone else in your life. Don’t make it all about you and your business, and be prepared to ask about what’s going on in everyone else’s lives when you go out.
3. Ignoring the need to switch off
For a lesson in the importance of switching off, read ‘Thrive’ by Huffing ton Post founder Arianna Huffington. This book covers all the detailed reasons why lack of sleep and addiction to our smartphones and tablets play havoc on our bodies. It also creates an isolated family dynamic at home where there isn’t enough quality time spent together.
Not only is it clear from the science examined in Thrive that our brains need sleep to learn, to process and memorize information and form new neural pathways, missing out on sleep and rest time affects all areas of life, and inhibits growth in younger people. Sleeplessness kills our creativity, leads to clumsiness and mistakes we make while working tired, and is responsible for different problems from anxiety and depression to overeating, weight gain and low libido.
Get enough proper sleep by making sure you shut down all technology and screens at least 30 minutes before bedtime, and don’t take any devices into the bedroom. If you have trouble following this advice a doctor or sleep psychologist might also be able to help.
Let others know your working hours and manage expectations; they’ll start contacting you when they know you’re available or wait before chasing you up. This truly works if you stick to it.
4. Don’t Refuse to Ask for Help
Every person has what’s called a ‘zone of genius’ where they are better than average at what they’re doing, so far more effective. If you spend too much time working outside your zone of genius you will slow down your progress, and probably be resenting it. You’ll also make those around you feel like they’re part of a sinking ship.
What’s the solution? Figure out the things you enjoy doing and are good at, and look around for cheap and effective help to do the rest. Learn how to delegate and outsource effectively and watch your business baby thrive.