In 2019, it isn’t uncommon to hear about folks who have a day job and a business on the side. You may have heard of these folks refer to themselves a sidepreneurs, the 10% entrepreneur, or folks like me who separate the two distinctively as their own thing. You’ll often hear me say that I have a 9to5 and that I’m an entrepreneur.
The issue with having two ‘hustles’ is that often times you find yourself working all the time with little time for yourself. Or even worst, burned out. This is when self-care is most important and having things that you do to recharge on a daily basis is important.
After my first major burn out as an entrepreneur and 9to5er a couple of months ago, I’ve made self-care a priority. No, I’m not perfect at always making sure that I do the things on the list that you’ll see below consistently, but I’ve become more in tune with myself to know when I need to slow things down a bit.
Are you an entrepreneur with a 9to5? Check out these self-care tips:
- Take a Mental Health Day – I’ve been a fan of this since graduate school. Sometimes you’re not physically sick, but you may not be 100%, mentally. It is OK to take a day to reset and turn your brain off. In fact, it’s necessary, especially when you’re wearing so many hats. During my mental health days, I may do very light work or things that I truly enjoy about my work and not worry about other areas that made me need to take a mental health day in the first place. I also like to use this time to take a bath and enjoy some alone time bingeing on Netflix or reality shows. The point is to use this day and treat it as you would days that you take a day off because you’re sick physically.
- Give yourself grace – Sometimes as an entrepreneur you can be hard on yourself because the beginning and the end is on you. There’s a lot of pressure to knock out things on your to-do list, respond to emails, etc. And lucky you, you get to also replicate this for your 9to5. Depending on your gig for your 9to5 it can be just as demanding as running your business and this is the time where you have to let some things go on your to-do list or delegate. I always try to be the colleague that is willing to jump in and help my co-workers because I know that one day I’ll need them to do the same for me when I need to share the load. Always be a team player so that you can receive that support when you need it at your 9to5 because you my #BossBabe will depend on this more than the average employee. Another thing is to always give your best in all that you do and allow that to be your marker on giving yourself grace for a job well done even if things don’t go as planned.
- Insert ‘me’ time into everyday – This is crucial. Even if it is shutting your door at you 9to5 for lunch and resting your eyes for 15 minutes or so. Take time to slow down everyday and give yourself a break and some T.L.C. On particularly stressful days, I treat myself to lunch in my car parked somewhere off-site where I either call my mom or I watch YouTube. This helps me to rest my brain a bit and recharge before finishing my day. Find your ‘thing’ that helps you recharge quickly and do it everyday.
- Compartmentalize and streamline – This is EVERYTHING. When balancing two jobs (because that’s what you’re doing) you are expected to give both 100%. In order to do that effectively you have to be able to separate things and then add a process to it. So for me, I can streamline a lot of things at my 9to5 easier than I can my business to preserve my mental energy. I do a lot of scheduling of my work and I try to delegate tasks when I can. I’m also selective about the extra meetings and socializing activities that I do/go to. Usually if it is not essential to my bottom line, I don’t do it. And that is a hard and fast rule that I DO NOT bend on, no matter what. When I am at home, I also have a hard and fast rule on not bringing work from my 9to5 home unless I have to because of the nature of my work. Boundaries are important in order to get all the thing done for both hustles.
- Have a bomb support system – I’m still working on finding my tribe. If you haven’t realized it yet, being an entrepreneur can be extremely lonely. Add in the fact that you have a 9to5 and you work with others that may not understand why you do what you do and it can feel even more like you’re on an island. Having people around you that support you, are willing to give you words of encouragement and even better yet are on a similar journey allows you to see that you are not alone.
Are you an entrepreneur with a 9to5 gig? What are some self-care tips that you do to maintain your balance?