Because my business is being creative, I have to protect it like an asset. But creativity is a quality that’s in demand for just about every occupation. Being able to call up your creativity means you likely need to recharge from time to time.
We live in a very busy, 24/7 noisy world where we feel we never have enough time to take care of ALL the things we need to, let alone ALL the things we want to do. I’ll hear small business owners and solopreneurs quantify time by their hourly rates. “If I take the time out to do X, that will take 3 hours out of my workday (travel to and from plus the event itself), I need to really justify it.” Many feel the need to recover those hours into billable time, i.e. the time away from work equals X amount of business income.
News Flash: You have the same amount of time as everyone else. It’s just our perception of time that gives us trouble. (Bonus Material About Time at The Bottom of This Post)
Give Yourself Permission.
Our biggest struggle with time is that we have to be doing something constructive or for the benefit and growth of our business — ALL THE TIME. And guess what? You will eventually burn out. For the sake of your business and sanity, give yourself permission to take time during the day to goof off, a.k.a. recharge. For some, it’s hard to know what this looks like without feeling like a derelict or get in the habit of doing. So, I’ll give you my very short list of favorite things I do when I need recharge:
Go Outside and Walk Barefoot. Give it five minutes (or more). If at some point you’ve been lucky to vacation somewhere warm with a beach, you know how restorative walking barefoot in the sand can be. There is a reason for that. The earth itself has energy, an electoral charge that passes through us when we walk barefoot or sitting in the grass under a tree. We can literally recharge by connecting with the earth. It sounds wacky, like some throw back from the “new age” movement, but it works.
A Little Blank Book. Really stressed about a deadline and moving a project in the right direction (obvious energy zappers)? That’s when I write stuff down, random thoughts, (that may turn into a poem), or write down what I’m grateful for can be restorative. Writing is different from design, it helps puts things into perspective and can lead to solutions that I’m working out for projects. When that happens — the eureka moment, it can be very recharging.
Meditate. (Or yoga. Or tai chi.) While I do yoga and tai chi off and on in a class setting, meditation has been presented to me as a way to find your center and confidence. When you’re burnt out, you’re certainly not grounded which can make you feel…vulnerable. Finding a practice you like and works for you is like having your own personal back-up battery, your secret weapon, something you can do for next to nothing, almost anywhere, and for as much time as you need.
Cultivate. You know, a side project apart from what you do professionally. Maybe you’ve been so busy putting your energy into your business that you’ve neglected other passions. A side project doesn’t take away from your business, it can do the opposite by letting your recharge and that can overflow and benefit your day-to-day operations.
With summer just days away, we’re already in the mindset of moving at a different pace, making it a perfect time to explore ways that help you recharge, for now, and whenever.
Bonus Material: If the subject of time interests you in a non-scientific way, there’s a fascinating little book called “Einstein’s Dreams” by Alan P. Lightman that’s well worth a read.
Thanks to Julia Caesar for the awesome “Woman Doing a Tree Pose in Sublime Landscape” photo. She comes by way of UnSplash, a free stock photography website, perfect for finding images to illustrate your blog / Facebook posts, your PowerPoint presentations, etc. Downloads are in high-resolution, so they can be used for print, too.