Developing Your Flexibility
As small business owners, we often feel like flexibility is just a footnote in the story of our lives. We allow our career responsibilities to dictate the calendar, prioritizing and accommodating everyone within our studios … but not ourselves.
Well, I’m here today to remind you to pump the brakes on this mindset!
It may be back-to-school season, but that doesn’t mean you lack choices when it comes to finding balance and flexibility in your work life. It’s possible to find harmony! You do have to be intentional though—intentional about taking time off and not filling it with more studio to-do lists.
Several weeks ago I had the opportunity to take a day off. Instead of defaulting to work, I chose to take my niece, Lucian, to Chicago. We visited my daughter, Isabella (who was performing with The Kate Jablonski Statement), met up with friends from home, enjoyed an ice cream outing, went to the American Girl and LEGO stores, and enjoyed breakfast together the next morning.
It was only one day, but it was enough to completely refresh and recalibrate my mind. It lifted me out of the busy-ness and into the pure joy it is to spend quality time with a little girl like Lucian. I was able to distance myself from work and use that space to fully focus on family and fun.
Being totally candid, I would normally see an empty day on my schedule and think, “Finally! Time to tackle email or dream up some new ideas!” And for all of us leaders, on occasion there is benefit to doing that. But—and this is key—we also have to remember that open time equals flexibility, not just an automatic day at your desk.
Entrepreneurs make big sacrifices. We give up the ability to leave the office at a predictable 5:00pm. We have no guarantees of weekends off, or the receipt of the same paycheck each month. But what we “lose” in sacrifice we “gain” in flexibility. We are the top decision-makers and as such, we get to decide when to take a breather.
So as much as there’s benefit to a day of new ideas at work, of open-ended thinking, dreaming, and brainstorming, there’s also a benefit to doing something spontaneous and beautiful with your family—or for your health and wellness (or all of the above!). It’s worth it to be intentional about this time. This is part of the reward of business ownership.
I encourage you to find time during the next two weeks (and I know they’re busy) for a flexible day. A day of rest or fun or relaxation or family … whatever feels right. You won’t regret it and you won’t feel guilty. This can be part of your lifestyle as an entrepreneur. It just takes intention.
Take a break. Develop your flexibility. Gain your reward.