For startup founders, there is a dire need to find equilibrium between a professional life and a vital personal life. Assuming you can put the two on an even scale, though, is deceiving. Whether you’re a solo-preneur or not, the pull of business demands is always present.
To be successful in both things doesn’t mean you have equal hours at home and in the office, it simply means you have found a rhythm that fulfills both sides.
I know for many entrepreneurs, including me, the default thing is work. There are always too many projects and too many to-dos left undone. That’s why I believe you need to have something else on the calendar.
Think back to when you were a kid and what activities or interests got you really excited. As adults, many of us have lost that sense of fun and inspiration. Put fun activities, rewarding experiences and exceptional adventures on your to-dos and protect them like you would any “real” appointment.
I’ve always been a fan of lists and I know many other successful people share this. What better list can you create than a list for your most memorable and exciting life?
This is pretty easy and confines everything I want to do, have or become before I die. The hard part is sitting down and just creating the list. Most of my list is centered around “do:” drive your own car, donate $10 million to charities in my lifetime, visit Pakistan, where I was born, and participate in the Sports.
Your list is unique to you.You could get at least 5 to 10 items on your own list. The first few are easy, but then you really have to look for what would make you happy. What excited you as a kid? What have you always wanted to do? What have you always wanted to be?
Don’t get stuck in what other people will think. Don’t put something on your list that doesn’t excite you or put it there because you think you’re supposed to. Hey, if you don’t want to save the whales, don’t put it on your list.
When I hear people say they don’t have time for something, it really means that item is not a priority for them. The excuse of “I don’t have time” is commonly accepted, but we all have the same 24 hours in a day. It’s up to you to decide what your priorities are. And if a priority is living a full, rich life with incredible experiences and adventures, then you’ll create the time and schedule items from your list.
A close cousin to not having enough time is believing you can’t get away from your business long enough to do any of the fun items on your list.
Freedom is the operative word for entrepreneurs, and unless we exercise it by stepping away from the office, we become nothing more than servants to our businesses.
Think without putting conditions or restrictions on your list. It doesn’t matter if you think it’s dumb, or couldn’t really happen or think others will laugh at you. So what? Go with your heart and just get it down.
There’s no harm in writing it down even if it doesn’t happen.
Do I really think I’ll be in the Sports? Probably not — but there’s a tiny shot. I don’t know how many people are waiting in line to go 80 mph headfirst down an icy track.
So who knows if I’d get a tryout? But if I didn’t throw it out there to the universe and write it down, I know I wouldn’t hear the faint knocking of opportunity.
How do you get your life list completed? Write it down. If you do nothing but write 5 to 10 items in your list, you’ll be surprised at how many get done in a year without your ever looking at them again.
Schedule it! This is where a lot of people fall down, but unless you schedule your fun, it won’t happen, because you can always do one more work item and your inbox will never be empty.
Think about your vacation: it’s scheduled and it happens precisely because it is scheduled. The more fun you schedule into your life, the more you’ll get.
You might believe you’re indispensable, but nearly everyone, including you, is replaceable. It’s important to step back and see if you are truly operating on activities in your business that are core competencies and unique abilities where you excel.