3 Ways Small Business Owners Can Fall into a New Positive Habit
A new habit can be the start of even more positive change in a small business lifestyle. One of the reasons why entrepreneurs become self employed in the first place is often because they crave more flexibility in achieving a balance between their work and their lifestyle, so taking full advantage of that should be something that you think about as the seasons change. Fall is a great time both for growing your business habits and your lifestyle habits, with plenty to do outdoors and a lot to plan in order to be ready to take advantage of the prime sales months of the holidays. Creating a habit isn’t something that happens overnight, and generally speaking the best way to integrate a new aspect of your routine is through building it up gradually. For example, someone who doesn’t jog would probably not be able to adjust to running four or five miles multiple times a week, since they would quickly become burned out. Still, jogging is a healthy way to fight stress and stay fit, so a way to ease into it would be to resolve not on a target distance, but rather on a target time, running as far as possible in a single direction for 15 minutes, for a total of 30 minutes round trip. Over time, by building up strength and resolve, you will be able to cover more ground in the same amount of time, increasing the challenge of your exercise while keeping within a time frame that works for you.
1) Make it work with your schedule. Time is the fundamental resource that all business owners value, as well as one of the most finite. Because of this, it’s often schedule conflicts that put even the most well intentioned resolutions on the back burner. Make your commitments fit realistically into your schedule when you plan them, and realize that is if you time something too tightly, the odds of it actually coming to pass might be low when it comes down to actually getting it done. For example, if you want to spend an extra 30 minutes learning about a new marketing technique each day, you might want to consider trying to reclaim commute time by listening to a podcast or book on tape.
2) Get a buddy. The idea of a buddy that you can rely on to help you achieve a mutual goal has roots in many different self help programs, the reason being that it is an effective tool for remaining on task. In a business context, having a trusted mentor has been found to be a fundamental aid to business success, since their insights and experience can guide you around common business pitfalls. They can also be your aid when attempting to instill a new positive habit in business, giving perspective on how to manage your goals effectively. In terms of a health or self development goal, having a buddy is also a smart move, but be aware that if you choose someone who is not reliable, it could potentially impede your progress. Find someone you trust to be reliable and chime in when they see you losing steam.
3) Measure your progress. Another common reason business owners give up on goals is because they don’t feel like they are making progress. That’s why maintaining perspective on how hard they have worked on how far they have come since starting out is a good idea. It lets them avoid judging themselves too harshly when they are making progress, and conversely, shows them what happens should they begin to slack on their commitment to their goals. Keeping a journal, or even just a series of notes to underline the work you have done towards your goal can create the perspective and feeling of continuity that really cements your new habit in your mind and routine.
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