In Women Entrepreneur

Whether you are single or married with 5 children, many women feel that 24 hours a day aren’t enough. Many women say that maintaining a balance between their work and their personal life is one of the biggest challenges in their life, and managing so many things and being happy at the same time is extremely difficult. And if you are running a business, it gets even more complicated. As a business owner, you must wear multiple hats and do everything from accounting to sales. Meanwhile, piles of documents keep stacking up on your desk, and unopened emails fill the inbox. Everyone is waiting for your instructions to get things moving. If you feel like a rat spinning a wheel, don’t worry; you are not alone.

After following some advice I learned from courses and books about Time Management, I realized that using complex rules to manage the inbox and planning my time minute by minute doesn’t really work. The more I try to ‘manage’, the less happy I became. It’s like chasing a rainbow. No matter how hard you try, you’d never reach it because traditional time management is missing out very important elements. The real key to achieving the balance is not about trying to do more with less time, but rather doing less and letting go of what doesn’t serve your goals.

Here is the reality that many people totally miss out. Without understanding these concepts, you’ll never have enough time, even if you had 48 hours a day.

  • Most of us women are taught to take care of family and keep the house tidy. So it’s our nature that when things are scattered on the floor, we feel a need to pick them up. One the other hand, men think that home is a place to relax and they feel ordering the house is like a duty that they’d least want to do after a busy day at work.
  • Whether you have only one child or 5 children, every mum feels overwhelmed because we want to give everything to our children.
  • Multitasking is women’s nature. We always multitask even without thinking. But if we don’t consciously manage ourselves, we end up jumping from one thing to another and it distracts our attention and focus.
  • According to the Pareto’s principle, 80% of result s comes from 20% of input. For example, 80% of your business income comes from 20% of products, 80% of revenue is brought by 20% of employees and 80% of happiness comes from 20% of your friends.
  • Even if you had an extra 5 hours a day, you’d probably fill them up and still feel time is not enough because you’d either find more things to do or take more time to do the same thing. That means a woman’s job will never get done.

Having these in mind, I want you to pay attention to all the things you do for the next one week. Write them down and ask yourself if each of them contributes to a result you want, whether that be your income, happiness or fulfillment. If they don’t, do one of the followings:

1. Delete
There are many things we are so used to doing, but it’s time to see if they really contribute to the result you want. Maybe it’s time to cut down a number of products that don’t sell and take up too much storage space and your time. Or maybe it’s time to get rid of non-performing staff or suppliers that are giving you so many headaches. Or maybe it’s time to move to a smaller house that needs less maintenance.

2. Delegate
If there are things you don’t really enjoy doing, ask someone to do them. Hire a personal assistant to manage book keeping, admin, travel arrangement and running errands. If your business is not growing, then most likely you are doing many things that don’t generate revenue. As an entrepreneur, you have to spend 70% of your time talking to potential customers, planning for the next marketing plan and thinking business strategy.
Stop expecting your husband to help you with house chores. Instead, hire a housekeeper to clean and wash. It’s so nice to come back home and find the house clean and dinner waiting for you in the fridge. If your little voice is saying that you can’t afford it, think about how much time and frustration you’d save by not doing house chores, and use that time to generate more income than what you are paying the housekeeper.

3. Automate 
Unfortunately, many business owners become a bottleneck for their business. If your business cannot run without you, you will never achieve freedom in time and money. Create a check list, process document and FAQ for your team to manage and make small decisions on their own. Outsource or hire a team to free up yourself for new opportunities and your business growth. You don’t want to miss out a big opportunity just because you don’t have time.
Remember, you can’t manage your time. The only thing you can manage is yourself. As an entrepreneur, you have to focus your effort to the 20% that gives 80% of the results. Success is not about working hard, but working smart.

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© 2013 Abundant Women Pte Ltd

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