How to run a small business and keep your work-life balance

Monday, June 8th, 2015

Anyone that has become self-employed or is running a small business will know that a work-life balance can be hard to find. Being so emotionally invested can mean that it’s hard to switch off after a day at work, and you might find that your work life and personal life start to merge together. That’s particularly true if you’re working from home, so here are three things that can help you keep a work-life balance:

Get a separate physical space for your work

Don’t work in bed, or in the living room as you watch TV. Ideally, don’t work at the dining table either. You need a defined work space – ideally a separate room – that you don’t spend your leisure time in. Work in a home office and shut the door as you leave; the physical closing of the door should be linked to a mental closing of the door, so that your work is locked away. By working in places that you spend your leisure time, you’re inviting work into other parts of your life and might find it harder to stop and relax.

Get a telephone answering service or virtual receptionist

Many small business owners find that their home life starts to be interrupted by calls from customers, clients and salespeople. Constantly answering calls will eat into your personal life, and can also distract you when you’re working. As a result, your productivity will be lower. Some business owners make the mistake of giving out their personal home or mobile phone number, opening themselves up to a regular stream of business-related calls.

With a virtual receptionist, someone else can take your business calls on your behalf. You won’t be constantly disturbed by ringing phones, and your receptionist can deal with order taking or payment processing. Alternatively, your virtual receptionist can simply take messages so that you can deal with calls when it’s convenient for you, not when your son or daughter is waiting for their bedtime story.

Give yourself time off

It can be tempting to work as often as possible when you run a small business, but you should always give yourself the same rights as you’d give an employee. Give yourself proper breaks and lunch breaks, stop working at a set time, and make sure that you take holidays and days off frequently.


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