Anyone who has owned a business knows that it’s extremely difficult to compartmentalize work from home when there are always too many things to do at work.
Recently, a client was explaining to me some of their family and home issues. The more they talked, the more I realized how much their workload and stress was adversely affecting other aspects of their life. In this case, like many others, the client did not make the connection between spillover from work and the negative impact on other aspects of their life.
During my 11,000 coaching sessions with business owners, I’ve seen a variety of work-life balance issues created by a negative work environment. Here are just a few that I’ve seen firsthand.
- Drinking too much
- General malaise. Right now, you’re probably saying, “Oh, this isn’t me,” and maybe you are right. However, I would estimate that 25% to 50% of business owners are stuck in malaise. They show up for work and do things they would prefer not to do because they have to. After a while, this grinds you down, and you get used to it. You forget your hopes and dreams because you have to do all these things to keep the business going. One of my favorite things is to help business owners hit the reset button and blow up their belief system about things how things “have to be.”
- Smoking too much
- Other compulsive behaviors
- spouses and significant others complaining they don’t get enough time with you
- lack of hobbies or outside interests
- ignoring your friends
- not planning for vacations or other fun activities because are simply not enough time or you can’t get yourself to even think about it
- being reluctantly drug to family events
- calling your significant other “the cruise director.” This may seem innocuous, but how it plays out is the business owner never plans anything outside of business and just follows whatever their significant other wants. This can lead to resentment or feeling like important family events are just one more thing to do.
- Lack of exercise. If I had a dollar for every business owner that’s told me they needed to exercise more, I could buy a nice car. If it’s important, how come business owners everything around to it? It’s because the never-ending list of todos occupies too much space in their head and too much time on the calendar.
- Side note – another reason important things like exercise don’t get done is “The Try Harder Plan.” most people default to what I call “The Try Harder Plan.” Under this plan, you don’t need to reduce anything you’re doing; you just try harder to do even more. It never works because you’re already trying awfully hard. It’s pretty safe to assume that every business owner will need to reduce work in order to take on something new.
If any of these apply to you, there’s no need to be ashamed. You are in line with the majority of business owners. My challenge to you is to do something about it.
A good place to start is to download two free chapters of the Half-Retire book here.