Running your own business while trying to write your book is often exciting, but it can also sometimes be lonely, stressful, and a bit overwhelming.
We’ve all had days when we think, “Why am I doing this again?” Staying sane while managing the day to day of a small business and writing a book for your business is a challenge, so here are some tips to get you through:
DEVELOP A ROUTINE.
As small business owners, we don’t have the forced discipline of having to be at the office at 9.00am or the boss will be upset, so we have to create this ourselves. Developing a routine that works for you can be a great way to stay sane. Set your alarm for the same time, be at your desk at the same time, allocate time for each task, including checking email and returning phone calls. If writing in the morning is better for you, allocate some time to do this a couple of times a week and then do your other work around this. Hey, isn’t this one of the great things of working for yourself?!
RE-INTRODUCE YOURSELF TO YOUR FRIENDS AND FAMILY.
Keeping the hours under control can be difficult when it’s your business and much of your spare time is taken up with writing. You may think that working really hard is good for your business and book, and it is, to a point. But burning yourself out undoes all your good work. So, make sure you stay in touch with the people in your life.
GET OUT OF THE OFFICE.
GET A BUSINESS OR WRITING COACH OR DO SOME TRAINING.
There are people out there who know more about running a business or writing a book than you do. Use them!
PLAY SOME MUSIC.
When you’re in the office by yourself, put on your favourite song, crank it up to 11 and sing along. It’s good for the soul. If you write better with music, pop it on. If others are at home, pop in your earphones and totally focus on your writing.
TAKE CONTROL OF YOUR WORKLOAD AND WRITING TIME.
If you’re flat out at work and not finding enough time to write (or do anything else), think about how much working you’re taking on or the type of work. Is it just taking up time you could be using to write a book that will bring in the business you really want? Plan some writing time into your week and stick to it.
DON’T FORGET TO HAVE SOME FUN.
Whenever I’m feeling the heat or need to step away from the computer, I only need to watch our big mutt Archie come trotting into the office with a toy to be reminded that there’s always time for a bit of fun; a five-minute play with a dog cures all. He doesn’t know about deadlines, cash flow, invoices, schedules, or marketing.
BECOME AN EMAIL NINJA.
You’ll save hours every week if you get better control of your inbox.
REMEMBER THAT YOU ARE THE BOSS.
There is no-one telling you what to do. Yes, you have staff (maybe), clients and lots of responsibilities but as an entrepreneur, it’s your show, and it rises (and falls) on your skills, talent, commitment and effort. So schedule your time so it works for you. You can work at 9.00 at night if you want or start writing at 4.00am – it’s totally up to you.
STOP FOR A MOMENT AND ENJOY YOUR SUCCESSES.
When you run your own show AND write a book, you can see the rewards for your labour. When you’re having a bad day, stop for a moment and think about some of the recent successes you’ve had. (If you’re having trouble thinking of any recent successes, I think I might know why you’re a bit stressed.)
REMEMBER HOW LUCKY WE ARE.
I have some friends who work in corporate jobs who earn more than I do, but not one of them enjoys what they do every day as much as me, and some of them hate every minute they spend at work. None of them have written a book either. So, who is getting more reward for their time and effort, and who is enjoying life more?
If you’re having one of those days that makes you think you’re just going to fly right off the planet, try some of these tips to help bring you back down to Earth.