**Warning this post is about to get real and personal.**
It goes without saying that running a small business can sometimes be taxing. And sometimes all you can do is curl on your couch and eat ice cream for a week. But when you find yourself in a funk where you simply do not have the motivation how do you bounce back? Is is possible to recover.
Now that we are through what is the worst winter I have ever experienced and I am seeing the sun more frequently I am starting to feel more energized. But last week was the worst. I could not find it in be to finish anything or even sit down in front my computer. And do you know what happened? My business suffered. I saw a drop in traffic to my site and to my income. But you know what- I am OK. My business is OK. I am able to bounce back with fresh ideas and the desire to be better.
What I learned from this? I need to take more time off. I need to properly prepare for times like this and plan in vacation time- even if I just want to binge watch Breaking Bad, again. I found myself in front my computer nearly everyday and not really being productive. Sadly, watching videos on YouTube does not pay anything.
Sometimes it is clutter that is causing the business funk. My desktop was a hot mess- there were files to be sorted and most deleted or archived. Hundreds of emails to read and respond to. After taking some time away from my desk I was able to come back and quickly set up a new system to keep my desktop from looking cluttered- (I sorta cheated on this one and finally make the jump from PC to Mac so there is file of Old Desktop Items). Sorted through a few days of emails and just archived the rest. If it was sent to me as urgent or within the past couple of days, I literally just hit the delete button. I knew that I was never going to read them and if it were important they would sent a follow up message.
I have created new filters and smart mailboxes to keep things in order when they come in. I am setting up fresh, clean systems with the intention to hire an assistant in the coming months. And my setting up methods now for how to regulate their workflow I will better be able to assess how many hours they will need to spend on each task.
Take aways from a somewhat random yet probably relevant to most small business owners at some point or another post.
Take time off.
I learned that being at my desk was not the sam as getting work done and it was still mentally draining.
Declutter your desktop and inbox.
I knew that not starting every day with a fresh canvas was adding unnecessary stress to the situation. And scanning my desktop looking for files is just time consuming. Having hundreds of unread emails reminds you of how much more work you “need to do”.