Over the last few weeks I have met quite a few people who are involved, in some way, in promoting mental health well-being, particularly in the work place. This has meant my own thoughts have strayed to being considering stress, workplace stress, dealing with stress and choosing the life you want.
Working from home, I'm largely a lone-worker; I spend a lot of time on my own, away from people, away from general human interaction. While I am very happy with my work choice and my work-life balance, I am aware that I need to do things to ensure I don't find myself feeling isolated; shutting myself away tapping away on my laptop. My personal techniques for that are making sure that I get outside (my crazy spaniel is a great outdoors running buddy and an excuse to make me do it), and booking time in to do things for me away from work; this is quite often meeting up with a friend for a coffee and natter.
Business networking also plays a big part in my work balance. Yes, it is where I meet a lot of useful contacts, potential clients and referrers, but it also simulates the office environment to a degree. We talk business, but we also build relationships much in the same way that you might build relationships with co-workers in an office. I meet a lot of people who use networking, not just as a means to an end to promote their business, but as a way to stay connected and get that "work feel" while being self-employed. I believe in the power of networking, and for that reason I attend many groups, and host 2 networking groups myself.
Putting the aspect of lone-working aside, the level of work and a lack of balance between your work and family life can put stress on you and affect you negatively. I find that a lot of my clients suffer in this sense; they have too much to do and not enough time in which to do it which causes them stress.
There are lots of things that make our lives busy: chores, life admin, family, socialising, work. Being self-employed, a mum of 2, a daughter, a sister a friend, a dog owner (or does he own me?), a volunteer - you see where I'm going with this - I'm busy. I get being busy. I get that there just aren't enough hours in they day. Ever.
I can't give you time, but I can help you use your time wisely so that you really do make the most of what you do. How do I get everything done? I plan, I delegate, I sometimes nag, I use the resources that are available to me and if I'm not happy with how things are going, I ask myself what one thing can I change to make them better. I recognise my skill set; I am happy to accept that there are things that other people can do better than me, and there are some things that I don't enjoy doing.
Make the most of this life, and live the one that you want to live. Of course if you've realised that having a VA in your life is just the thing you need, have a look at how we can help you now.