It’s summer. Which as a mom and creative entrepreneur this is certainly my HIGH season. I am running on all cylinders at once. Warp speed. I am planning and packing for day camps, overnight camps, bible camps, sleepovers and playdates with friends and cousins. I am making lunches, and carving out precious time with the people I love the most … my kids and family. And of course summer vacation is their vacation too, away from school and homework. And as a family it’s so so important for us to carve out time to really settle into summer.
Today, I’m sharing with you a free download with some of my most treasured tips for a healthy work/life balance.
We recently rented our favorite little Airbnb in Northern Michigan where Lake Michigan was our back yard and we had an entire week to play in the sand and in the sun with our families. We go there every year, sometimes with ourselves, sometimes with family and sometimes we bring friends. It’s always so beautiful. We unplug for a bit, and soak up all the goodness Michigan has to offer.
But this is where it gets hard. Because also as a Michigan wedding photographer, I am shooting my little heart out, editing until the sun goes down and working with my most amazing clients via meetings, emails and Skype sessions. I am charging batteries, servicing gear, and carving out moments here and there to stay creative and explore. I am in the throes of my busy season. High time. What I plan for all year long. This is it. I am here.
So how do we find that balance to be everything to everyone all the time? Even to ourselves?
Here are some of my easiest, go-to tips for a healthy work/life balance.
1. Defend your personal time. Defend it with all your might. Consider it sacred, and treat it as so. Make it a priority whether it is time to pray, do yoga, hit the gym or be still. Schedule your vacations, and set that vacation responder so that you can truly enjoy that time with the most important people in your life.
2. Treat your work as a physical business, even if it is not. This is a big one. We can’t go to Target at 2am and expect them to open the store for us to buy a pair of sunglasses. So why are we responding to every last email, call or text outside of our business hours? Set business hours for yourself, especially if you work from home. Stick to them.
3. Automate, automate, automate. In today’s digital world, there are countless systems and apps that will help you automate many of the repetitive actions you do on a daily basis. Search out the ones that work best for you, and use the trial period to see if they’re a good fit. My go to for managing about 80% of my business is Honeybook. It has transformed my life, increased my bookings and helped me manage my business when I have to step away. Click here for 50% off your first year of Honeybook!
4. Turn off ALL push notifications. All of them. Every single one. I’ve had my push notifications for email, Facebook, Instagram, etc for about 5 years now. And somehow I have still managed to be engaged and have happy clients. You can, too. I promise. Try it for one week snd see how much freedom it gives you instead of being interrupted while living your life.
5. Pursue your passions. This one gets a bit tricky because if you’re an entrepreneur, there’s a good chance that your passion has blossomed into your career. So go … find something else. Something that is completely outside of what you do for a living. Something that brings you a deep sense of joy. Something that sparks your creative heart and reminds you that there is joy beyond work.
I’ve been in this business of being creative 12+ years now. Which in today’s age is like a billion years. I’ve worked hard to figure out how to strike a healthy balance and how to keep my clients happy and being present for them. I’ve experienced the deepest heartbreak and loss during that time. All the while loving what I do and but also working hard to figure it all out. I’m still a work in progress, but finding that fine balance between work and life is a subject that I don’t take lightly. It’s something that I know (for certain) every creative entrepreneur, small business owner and working parents struggles with.
Help is here for you. Help in the form of mentoring, or coaching or even a few freebies like a clarity call or my best tips. And if you’re not ready to hire a mentor or coach, you’re in luck because I’ve taken some of the best content & workflows and made it available to you over in the shop. I hear you, I see you. I’m just waiting for you to waive your white flag and have a listen from someone who’s been there.
And I’m starting off with this freebie that I created just for you. This is a little different from the list above, and contains BONUS TIPS that will literally change your life. Take it, try to implement a few of these tips and I promise you will feel a little more in control and a little less overwhelmed. But more importantly, you will also feel like you’re one tiny step closer to that fine balance between work and life.