I was thinking the other day about the phrase “the light at the end of the tunnel” and thinking about a friend who often attaches the sentiment that, for him, the light is often actually a speeding freight train coming to run him over. I think that many times, entrepreneurs feel that way. So many times you think you see things starting to pick up or turn around only to find out that there is a whole slew of other things that you encounter that you were not prepared for and you end up feeling flattened.
Often, we have our professional lives on the right track and tend to not notice that our personal lives are not faring as well. Especially as a business owner, you spend many hours making sure that all of the bases are covered at your business, oftentimes because there is no one else there to pick up the slack. It’s easy to get overwhelmed and feel like you have no one to turn to and when you try to talk to people who are NOT entrepreneurs, they often just don’t understand. For them, there is someone who takes care of ordering office supplies and the breakroom probably has coffee ready and all of those other little things that people who work in corporations take for granted. Because corporations have operations people and supply chain people and janitorial staff. They have someone in charge of making sure that payroll gets processed and that there is enough postage to get mailings out.
This is where having a Virtual Assistant can help save your sanity. If you have the opportunity, log what you do for a week. Every little work-related thing. And how much time it takes. There are a number of productivity tools out there that allow you to log time and I think if you take a week or two and very carefully keep track of things, you’ll find all sorts of places where time ends up getting away from you. Maybe it would help to have someone else help you with your email or schedule your appointments. Someone else might question the booking of back-to-back appointments all day long (and how often do you keep people waiting because you overbooked yourself? Do you do this in your personal life, as well?) Take a look at some of the tasks that are eating your time that someone else could be doing. Think about how much lighter you would feel if you had someone else helping you with tasks that are weighing you down.
Let the light at the end of the tunnel be something you look forward to, not something you dread.