When we are heavily focused on trying to earn a living it is easy to let other parts of our lives get away from us. I have been fit and active for as long as I can remember, so it was a bit of a shock back when I was first starting out in my professional career and was down at the Aldi supermarket in my hometown. When one of the local farmers peered across the freezers from under his Acubra at me (as farmer types tend to do) and declared ‘Jeeze you’ve got a good cook haven’t you”. At that point I had a quick look down and realised that this bloke was right, things were starting to get away from me.
Managing a business is demanding, stressful and a lot of hard work. Staying fit and healthy will help you to keep control, give you the ability to stay focused, reduce stress and enable you to think clearly when you are facing difficult decisions. Being fit will give you the ability to maintain the energy and passion required to keep all areas of your life and business on track and moving forward.
One thing I have learnt about staying fit and healthy is that it is easier to achieve when you are doing something you enjoy. Whether that be playing a team sport, riding a bike, hitting the waves for a surf or going to the gym. Tiff and I take the kids to the beach nearly every weekend. We go nice and early, cycle along the beach then head down into the waves for a surf and top it all off with a BBQ in the park. During the week Tiff and I use the gym equipment nearly everyday and try to fit in some Yoga each morning.
Business works best when the managers and staff are balanced. That is, they work hard and play hard. The number of times I have been out to see new clients and they have a surf board or a bike sitting idle in the shed gathering dust while they are sitting around stressing about various facets of their business. My advice is dust off the toys and get out there. A solution will invariably present itself when you give your brain a quick rest from all the stress.
Staying fit and healthy goes hand in hand with time management (a staple of running any good business). Take Tiff for example; she works in the business full time, looks after two small children, is currently studying a law degree and still finds the time to fit in some Yoga, weights and cycling during the week. If you enjoy doing something healthy and fun then get out there and do it.
Another common mistake that I see new business owners fall into is where they are unwilling to take time away from their business to recharge the batteries. My father in-law who has been running a successful business for many years was always at me about work life balance, ‘Take a holiday” he would say. “Even if you think you can’t afford it, you can’t afford not to. Your holiday needn’t cost you the national debt go camping,” he would continue. And it is true leading up to some time out, our productivity is down as soon as we take a few days to recharge the batteries, productivity goes through the roof. Nowadays we make sure that we get away for our four weeks a year and we try and make every weekend family time and the business is better for it.
People that are fit and healthy aren’t struggling to stay afloat and complaining about the heat, they are out there looking for the next opportunity or fine-tuning bits of their existing businesses. Don’t wait for your local farmer to come along and say something, take control of your health, fitness and in turn business now.
This is the first (and most important) in a series of blogs that we have been working on over the last few months. That we will attempt to make into a bunch of short videos with the aim of passing on some of the tips and techniques that we have learnt whilst building Dynamic Accounting Solutions that will help to make your business life a little easier.