Bring Balance and Fun to Your Life

It is important to take time out to relax if you want to continue to stay healthy and energized.

Small business owners tend to wear many hats, and this brings with it the challenge of balancing life and work. It is not uncommon to hear entrepreneurs say they feel they have too much to do and just not enough time. There are only 24 hours in a day and only 7 days a week, and that can lead to small business owners feeling pressure to put in long hours at work, bring work home and work on the weekends.

And while it may seem easier said than done to create a balance between work and life, it is important to take time out to relax if you want to continue to stay healthy and energized.

WebMD provides 5 Tips for Better Work-Life Balance.

* Figure Out What Really Matters to You in Life
* Drop Unnecessary Activities
* Protect Your Private Time
* Accept Help to Balance Your Life
* Plan Fun and Relaxation

Source: WebMD Feature Archive, webmd.com/balance/guide/5-strategies-for-life-balance

Whether male or female, entrepreneurs manage to make personal time for themselves, according to the OPEN from American Express Small Business Monitor, a semi-annual survey of small business owners.

While business owners recognize the importance of “down-time” in their lives and most are satisfied with the amount of leisure time they have (81%), most feel that carving out this time does not come without stress.

Two-thirds of business owners (64%) find balancing their personal and business lives stressful. Women business owners are more stressed by work/life balance than their male counterparts (71% vs. 62%).

Two-thirds of business owners (67%) report they find themselves making sacrifices in order to be an entrepreneur. Among those who feel they are making sacrifices, family (52%) and friends (42%) are areas where they make the most sacrifices, followed by personal finances (36%) and health (35%). Male business owners are more likely to find themselves making sacrifices in their personal lives in order to be an entrepreneur when compared to women (73% vs. 65%).

As business owners find themselves trying to achieve balance, they identify flexibility as the most essential entrepreneurial attribute. One-third of business owners (34%) identify flexibility as the most essential aspect of being an entrepreneur. Following at a distance is working well under pressure (24%) and knowing the market (18%).

Taking their own advice on the importance of flexibility, two-thirds of business owners (64%) report making personal time for themselves during the business day. Men are slightly more likely than women to make personal time for themselves (66% vs. 60%). Although entrepreneurs realize the importance of taking time for themselves during the business day, nearly half (45%) consider taking time off from work to pursue a leisure activity a ‘guilty pleasure’. Female business owners are more than four times as likely than their male counterparts (18% vs. 4%) to consider ignoring an email as a ‘guilty pleasure.’

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