Between illness and injury, and other personal stuff, I’ve had to take my foot off the gas for the past couple of months. As someone who LOVES to do all the things and keep themselves busy this wasn’t easy.

But a shit load of stress forced me into a journey of self-care discovery. It’s been a really tough and uncomfortable but I’m so glad it happened because I’ve learnt from it. I’ve come out the other side now with a new perspective on working which will not only benefit me, but benefit my clients, my friends, my family and everyone else around me.

Because the life of self-employment isn’t always easy. I spoke about this in my guest blog post for Signal last month. As a business owner we’re often all the things (project managers, accountants, marketers and administrators). As the heart of our business it is so important to look after ourselves and so I’d love to share what I’ve learnt with you because maybe it may help you too.

Say No

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We all know by now that we need to put ourselves first. You can’t pour from an empty cup and all that. However this is SO much easier said than done, especially if:

1. You love your job and want to do all the things.

2. Your a people pleaser. I admit it, I’m a people pleaser. I love to help, be useful and make people happy. If your a people pleaser too, you’ll know how hard it is to say know.

3. Your female. I know I’m making a sweeping statement here, but as women a lot of us have the instinct to nurture, making it hard to say no to others ‘in need’.

During my recovery, I had to say no. I didn’t have the energy. But after a while. I got used to saying no. I actually started to like it. Because by saying no, you leave time to say yes to things you do want to do. You allow yourself time for self care. You’ll look after yourself and do the things you WANT to do instead of the things you think you SHOULD be doing. I’ve rearranged meetings so I can perform at my best. I traded tea at a friends for a bath and a book. I unattended a Christmas party because I felt rubbish and slept for 10 hours instead. And you know what? I felt SO much better for it #sorrynotsorry.

When it comes to tasks, if you take on something you don’t want to do, it’ll become another thing you just want off your (already) super long list of stuff to do. You’re also probably not going to put in 100% effort when you do ‘get round to it’. We worry so much about saying no but doing this passes it on to someone who’ll say yes. And let’s face it, that person will probably do a better job because they wanted to do it. Saying no means we’re actually being honest and more helpful. We’re doing that person a favour really and when you look at it that way, saying no becomes a lot easier.

I’ve also had to say no to myself. I love blogging and networking and Facebook lives and Instagramming and emailing – basically all the things! But in my time of respite, I’ve had to say no to myself and concentrate on switching off, getting better and working on what’s important. Speaking of switching off…

Switch off so you can be 100%

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Are brains are malleable, which means they change and respond to our lifestyle. When I’ve been working round the clock and burning the candle at both ends, I’ve found it a lot harder to switch off. Then, after working myself into the ground, I’d get ill and was forced to switch off. But after a few days R&R I’d feel so much better and work better because I had time to refresh my brain. But think how much better I’d feel after switching off to enjoy something? Instead of switching off to enjoy something?

Because what happens when you don’t switch off looks a little like this:

1. Go back to work resentful (omg I’m here again)
2. You’re stressed again, felt life you’ve had no real time off
3. You’re tired, your then inefficient and your not woking as well as you could.
4. Now having to take it easy because your burnt out to a crisp.
5. Now beating yourself up for having to take it easy and not working 100%.

Sound familiar? If yes, you really have to make the time to switch off. Because when you do, you’ll come back to work refreshed and be raring to go at 100% effort!

Delegate and Invest

You know what a real weight off my shoulders was? Passing work over to someone else. Instead of wasting hours of my precious self recovery time panicking, stressing out and faffing around struggling with something, I got someone else on it. That someone was also happy to do it and because it was their zone of genius, they did it much quicker than me. And with the problem off my shoulders, the relief I felt knowing the task was taken care of was worth every penny I paid for.

It’s also an investment in yourself. By delegating tasks out to others, I was able to spend more time marking and signed up 3 new clients in a week! What does more time mean for you? Maybe more time spent relaxing? Maybe more time with the family? Maybe more time working on what you want and moving your business forward?

Can I help you?

My zone of genius is creating websites. It’s the work I want to say yes to! So if there’s a website I can help you with then drop me an email and let’s talk.

If your that person who’s spending so much time DIYing their website but struggling to make any progress, then let’s talk about it.

If your someone who’s been meaning to get onto improving your website but you haven’t got round to it, because let’s face it, it’s something you really don’t want to do, then drop me a message.

I’ve helped previous clients save time, stress and energy with a new website. One client was making all her sales through FB messenger. She had to message every single person to take their order, what t-shirt they wanted, what colour and what size. Now with a new website she no longer has to do that and can spend her time with her family.

Another client was spending so much time generating gift vouchers online. She’d come up with a code, write it down, create the voucher in WordPress, email it to the person, mail it out to the person etc etc. Now the website generates it for her and all she has to do is mail it out. The automation of the task has saved her so much time. Time she spends marketing and getting more sales.

Your website should be used as a tool to help your business, not weigh it down. It’s not just a place for information but can help you automate client relationships, sales and tasks. So if there’s a new website I can help you with then get in touch.