It’s not hard to find quotes from Fortune 500 CEOs on the path to success or the best way to enjoy life, but it’s not very relatable, all things considered. It’s possible to be happier amid the largely daunting task of running your own business. The autonomy it affords is incomparable to the freedoms involved in working for someone else.
According to a recent survey, 55 percent of polled American small business owners consider themselves to be extremely happy. If you’re a small business owner who wouldn’t quite rank his or herself at that level of elation, here are a few ways to help improve your outlook.
- Balance work and life
It might go without saying, but your business can’t replace what you get with family, friends or other sources of fun. Those who are able to strike a solid balance between time spent on work and time spent on life find themselves happier than ever before.
To become a happier small business owner, make plenty of time for entertainment and family, even if you can only afford weekend time. Not only will the family be stronger with your added presence to the dynamic, but your stress levels will decrease as well. Of course, it won’t help if you discuss your business during this time, so remember to discuss other hobbies.
- Keep yourself healthy
Founder of stone + cloth Matthew Clough told Forbes that taking time to sleep, eat and work out is critical. One example he gave was to consider performing 10 minutes of yoga after waking up before work.
Not only is appearance a consequence of fitness, but so is happiness.
- Always plan ahead
As a small business owner, it’s a fact that you’ll have to live with a degree of uncertainty. After all, without any kind of risk, there wouldn’t be much of a reward. As a result, it’s impossible to guarantee your income at any point, but that’s also true of any corporate employee.
This is where you, as an owner, differ from the employee: You’re capable of mapping things out and shaping your future with your own hands. Come up with schedules, goals, deadlines and realistic processes that allow you to put money aside for your sales needs and the rest aside for easy to miss business responsibilities like payroll services or growth plans.
- Know your team
It might seem like a waste of time to stand around the water cooler talking to employees, but knowing them can have great benefits to your work life, including improved quality. Not only will you have a better idea of who makes the most valuable assets, but you’ll also find happiness when they succeed whenever you do. In fact, you’ll want them to succeed, much like your own friends and family.
- Keep communication lines open
Owning a business is a difficult job between the stress and numerous ideas coming to mind. Don’t allow these to remain bottled up inside; keeping this sort of stress dramatically reduces your happiness and can shave years off your life as well. Instead, it’s a better idea to come up with some office strategies to relay information and encourage open communication.
According to happy small business owners, maintaining good intra-team communication is critical to maintaining a happy work life. If you’re a constructive and respectful owner, you shouldn’t have any reason to keep your thoughts quiet. Consider a weekly meeting to ensure everyone can speak and be heard.
By allowing yourself to be proactive instead of reactive, you will have a better grasp on your company and your happiness as a small business owner.