Most of the time, we talk in this blog about how Marmalead can help you and your Etsy shop or about what Etsy is up to now. We also offer tips on photography, sales writing, and positivity. But today, I want to talk about something different. Today, I want to talk about finding balance.
All the changes
2020 tested us in just about every way imaginable! And as we embark on another year, we’re seeing unprecedented numbers of people working from home and learning new ways to manage their businesses, homes, and families. The bottom line is that most of us have had to face these new challenges without any sort of guidebook.
All the juggling
We know that finding balance is important, sure! But can I get a tip or two that I can put to practical use while trying to make products, homeschool my kids, and make sure my latest shipment of orders gets out before my partner gets home?
Well, we’ll give it our best shot! Here are a few tips that will hopefully get you headed in a balanced direction sooner rather than later.
1. You gotta draw a few lines in the sand
Work-life balance is important, period. Yes, you have to get those orders out. Do you need to make more products? For sure! Yes, you need to work on your SEO. But more than anything, you have to take it one step at a time and make sure you don’t buy a one-way ticket to Burnout-Ville.
So, draw a few lines in the sand. Put down your phone at 6 pm, close your laptop. Go make dinner or have a glass of wine or play with your kids or pups. Whatever gets your mind off of things, figure out what that is. Then, make sure you create the space and time to do it!
2. Be your best manager
When it’s time to work, maximize the crap out of that time! Some of us are already good at this. Some of us are not (raises hand from the back row). Buy a pretty planner or a block of sticky notes. Get a subscription to an online productivity manager, or download a free app. Whatever floats your boat. Just make sure you’ve got a solid way to hold yourself accountable for your “work time.”
You don’t have to be perfect (here’s looking at you- Type As). You are looking to simply make progress in this area. If you know there’s a specific task that you’ve been avoiding, break it down into teeny, tiny chunks and take care of it one teeny, tiny chunk at a time.
I’m serious about this teeny tiny stuff! If you haven’t read Tiny Habits by BJ Fogg, then definitely check it out! Bottom line, the better manager you become of your work time, the easier it will be to honor (and even expand *gasp*) those lines in the sand to protect that much-needed downtime!
3. Give your to-do list a partner
Have you ever heard of a to-be list? Last year I was reading an article in Forbes about finding balance in which the author mentioned the idea of putting a to-be list next to your to-do list. By doing this, instead of just staring at a list of tasks all day, you’re also constantly looking forward and asking yourself who you want to be in any given situation.
Do you have to package some orders today? Awesome! Who is the you that you want to bring to that task? And once you’ve completed it, pat yourself on that back for being one step closer to the person you’re ultimately trying to become.
To just do a little recap, remember: Draw some lines in the sand and protect the time it takes to keep yourself whole.
Find a creative and fun way to become your best manager. Learn to hold yourself accountable during your “working hours,” and remember that this accountability is one of the best ways to protect the lines you’ve drawn in the sand.
And finally, get started on creating a to-be list. Sit down with yourself and write out a brief personal mission statement about who you want to be, how you want to show up to life, the qualities and traits that you want to display front and center. Then, keep it in front of you like a personal vision board that you can use in conjunction with your to-do list!
Hopefully, these are just a few tips you can use that are immediately practical and help you achieve some balance this year!
Happy balancing, everyone!