#slowentrepreneur | How do you protect your personal time while nurturing a growing enterprise? This is the question I had the opportunity to pose to a group of women earlier this week, and is a question I often ask entrepreneurs who want to shift toward greater work-life balance. Entrepreneurship-as-a-24/7-endeavor is a model we’ve long observed, but as a #slowentrepreneur, I want to challenge that mindset and argue that we MUST place boundaries around our hard work and ambition. Otherwise, we’re fated for burnout.
But how did this mentality get started anyway? Understanding its origins might just be the push you need to get off that hamster wheel..
The moment corporations placed smart phones in the hands of employees is the moment workers gave up their right to be not accessible. Mobile technology made it possible for work to follow us home, and being able to work from home enabled employees to deliver work ahead of schedule. Delivering work ahead of schedule enabled corporations to beat out the competition, and being the employee who is first one in, last one out, and checks email from bed is the worker that earns the raise and promotion. In effort to keep up, other workers then employ the same practices, and before you know it, a working culture is created where not only is it okay to have no sense of personal boundaries, it’s expected. So, it’s no wonder that as workers leave corporate jobs to start their own endeavors, they employ the same bad habits - because it’s what you do, right?
The detrimental effects boundary-less working is painfully obvious, and there are many who recognize this and are taking drastic steps to counteract this mentality. From my conversation earlier this week, I learned that one entrepreneur goes offline for a full 24-hours once a week and cannot be reached - at all. Another woman only checks social media once a week. Personally, I shut down my studio each Wednesday to enjoy something in LA that I’ve never done before, such as a new restaurant or hiking trail. How about you? What boundary could you implement to protect your personal time? Check email once a day? Begin observing weekends again? Tell me in the comments below!