Being a business owner can be incredibly rewarding, but almost every entrepreneur finds themselves getting overwhelmed from time to time. This is particularly common for solo entrepreneurs who are juggling lots of responsibilities and demands on their time. They may feel stress, anxiety, fatigue, or even mental burnout from the pressure they are facing. If they do not take steps to address the problem, it can lead to long-term consequences for their health and mental wellbeing, not to mention their personal relationships. Here are five tips for overwhelmed business owners to return to when they feel that their work is getting on top of them.
1. Don’t be a hero
The worst way to deal with being overwhelmed is to try to ignore it or cover it up with a false front. The longer you try to struggle on, the more likely it is that both your health and your business are going to suffer. Take a step back and be honest with yourself about what is not working, while focusing on the positives of your situation. Remind yourself of your overall mission and motivation and move forward with a problem-solving attitude.
2. Delegate and/or outsource
Are you spending lots of time on tasks that are important, but not exactly your area of expertise? If so, you are not using your time efficiently and those areas of your business are probably not being taken care of as well as they could be. You might want to consider delegating certain tasks to trusted members of staff or outsourcing entire parts of the business to third party companies, e.g., accounts, digital marketing, administration, editing the website. If you are spending a lot of time updating your website, click here.
3. Prioritize your to-do list
Anyone can make a to-do list, but it is more difficult to prioritize a long list of tasks. This can lead people to start several different tasks without finishing any of them, which only slows progress further and makes them feel more overwhelmed. Find a way to work out which tasks will generate money or move you closer towards a goal that will generate money. Which tasks are time-consuming but will not add to the bottom line? Are there any tasks that could be outsourced to improve your efficiency?
4. Take one task at a time
When you have your list prioritized, it is time to work through them one at a time. By focusing on one task entirely and blocking out other issues you can improve accuracy and efficiency. Remove distractions such as social media and turn your phone to silent until the task is complete. For larger tasks, break them down into smaller steps that are more manageable. Learn to say no (politely) when others ask you to take on additional work until you are sure you can cope.
5. Remove clutter from your workspace
You may not realize it but being in a messy and disorganized environment can have a big impact on your mental state. Having to search through piles of papers when you need to find a statistic, or searching high and low for a document will bring additional stress and slow your progress. Organize your workspace, clear the clutter, and cleanse your mind.