The term ‘work/life balance’ is good in principle but often difficult to put into practice, especially if you’re a tradie running your own business.
This is because the reality of running a business is time consuming – especially with the little things like chasing up paperwork and admin processes around invoices and jobs. It all takes energy, and we only have a finite amount each day that we can spend.
Getting caught up in the ‘busy-ness’ of the tradie day means crucial bedrocks to maintaining our physical and mental health such as exercise, a good diet, rest and time being a ‘human-being’ with loved ones and not just a ‘human-doing’ are often sacrificed.
So take a deep breath, pause, and let’s consider this quote from the Chinese philosopher, Lao Tzu:
“Nature does not hurry, yet everything is accomplished.”
Hold space with that idea for a moment. Take the time to observe the natural environment around you. Be still.
One idea to consider from this quote is how to bring resources and systems into your business that free up your time. That way there is less hurry and more structure in place to accomplish your business goals. Following are a few tips to kick off with:
Consider your current situation and goals for your business as well as other areas of life whether that be family, health, relationships, hobbies, or travel. What’s going well? What isn’t? What do you want to change? What needs prioritising now, and perhaps in the long term? Remember that time and energy are two key resources that need to be managed towards the pursuit of one’s goals.
One example could be that your business is struggling to keep up with demand. Time spent managing jobs, quotes and invoices is increasingly intruding into your evenings and weekends. Perhaps the paperwork is everywhere? Or you need more staff? If so, there may be an opportunity to bring in resources to improve the situation.
Free up your capacity…
Once you’ve assessed your situation and goals, look at where your time and energy is currently spent, and where it needs to be. Then consider what you can do to free up your capacity so you can place your time and energy strategically.
To continue with the earlier example of the business, perhaps bringing in new staff to help out is an option to consider? Delegation is a powerful productivity tool when used well (and if you’re willing to be able to ‘let go and let others grow’).
Another fantastic tool for your business are job management systems like GeoNext, which can improve processes like quotes, job creation and allocation, staff scheduling, invoicing as well as integrating your accounting software. Our customers have reported up to 14 hours a week of time saved by using GeoNext! That’s a lot of time back in your bucket to redistribute as you see fit – whether that’s building your business, or getting your evenings back to spend with your family.
Find your joy…
Mental health for tradies is an important issue that needs more attention. Incorporating job management software is one of many things you can do to help ease the pressure in your business and life, but it’s not the only thing.
Check out this helpful article by Lifestyle Tradie on identifying and managing burnout. You can also read a useful article on the Goodwork blog that explores how to look after your mental health as a tradie.
Freeing up your time so you can better direct your energy is a crucial step in the right direction. Whether that is being able to hang out more often with your mates and loved ones, to just turning off your phone and getting into nature, life is a continual cycle between activity and rest. Find the joy that recharges and sustains you, so you can be your best self for work, your family, friends and most importantly – you! 🙂
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