Best Practices for the Self-Employed Part II: Balance

I just wrote a post about keeping good business habits when you work for yourself. Now here’s the other side of that. Here’s how I stay balanced and limit stress:

 

*Get in at least one thing for me each week. 
Don’t be a martyr. When you constantly put yourself last, you suffer. Maybe not at first, but after a while, you’ll have a breakdown that will affect your work, your relationships, etc. This is a huge problem for a lot of women because we tend to put ourselves last. A lot. I’m not saying drop your work and your family and go hit the road like Thelma and Louise. I’m just saying the world will not stop turning if take some time for yourself on a regular basis. I try to do something for myself each week. Take a ballet class. Take a yoga class. Go climb at the gym. Read my favorite magazine on the couch for an hour. Grab lunch with my best friend. ANYTHING that’s meant for my enjoyment. It’s something I get to look forward to and keeps my stress levels down. I notice it when I’ve lagged on this for too long.
 

 

*Work on the plane on the way out of town, read my book on the way back home. 
I travel a ton, so there are plenty of flights each month that I could make productive. It’s an ideal space to work in; nobody hounding you, no internet (usually) to distract you, no phone buzzing every few minutes with messages or emails that slow you down. On the other hand, I love books. I love to read! It’s one of my “things” and the plane is an ideal spot to catch on my book of the moment. I don’t want to only work on flights, or only read and not accomplish anything. So I have a new rule: work on the outbound flight(s), read my book on the inbound one(s). Two birds. One stone. Ami’s happy.
Like I ever have that much leg room…Except for my twice a year 1st class upgrades. via

 

*Don’t overfill my schedule. 
When you’re self-employed, you kind of have to take work when it comes your way, just in case of an unexpected slump (e.g. the Recession) so you tend to overwork yourself. Burnout is BAD though! It’s very evident to everyone around you when you’re burning your candle at both ends. Clients might pity you at first, but when you’re constantly in that state, they may eventually start looking elsewhere for somebody who can handle themselves, and their schedule, better. When you’re burnt out for a prolonged period, you can actually start repelling business. Keep things at a manageable level! It’s good for your business, it’s good for YOU.
This is hilarious. Don’t hurt a seal though. Via

*Have at least one sleep-in day per work week. 
I get up most days of the week at 5am and travel most weekends. Sleeping in until 7am makes a HUGE difference. I learned a long time ago that my body doesn’t work on just 6 hours of sleep so I need a full 8 hours to feel good the next day. If I have to go to sleep at 9pm every night, my personal life takes a hit as well. Not that I need to be out partying every night, but I need to be able to hold an adult conversation past 8pm, so I have to balance it out and not take on so much so early.
What do you do to keep a good work/life balance?

Read Part I here.

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Slack Line Dance Party

Ever been on a slack line? 
It’s pretty fun and helps you gain
balance, strength and control. 
I’ve sucked my friend, Crystal 
and my roomie, Tamara
into playing around with me. 
And after looking through some photos, 
was reminded of an old classic… 
Press play: 
Hip Hop Hooray [LP Version] by Naughty by Nature on Grooveshark
Hey!

Ho!

Hey!

Ho!

Hey!

You get it… 
; ) 
I apologize for you having this song stuck in your head for the rest of the day…. kind of. 
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Put Your Back Into It

Photobucket
One of the biggest workout mistakes people make is only working their ‘mirror’ muscles. These are the muscles you see when you look in the mirror; chest, abs, biceps, etc. Most peeps forget about the backside. Here’s why that’s bad:
When you work one side of the body and neglect the other, you get muscular strength imbalances. For example, if you do a ton of push ups and chest work, but don’t work your shoulders and upper back, you’ll get really a strong but tight chest, and really weak shoulders. The result is shoulders that hunch forward or rotate inward and a back that’s rounded or hunched because of stronger muscles pulling the bones one direction and the weaker ones not being able to reciprocate. This isn’t healthy (or attractive).
What can you do about this, you ask?
Stretch the muscles you tend to work more,
then strengthen the muscles you neglect!
Do you work at a desk? Chances are you’re leaning forward all day and don’t have the best posture. You need to stretch out your chest, biceps, abs, and hip flexors. Then you need to work your rhomboids, rear deltoids, erectors (heehee), and glutes. Try a few exercises for the front of your body, then try a few with back side… see which is stronger.
Moral of the story?! Put your back into it.
You’ll be stronger.
And sexier.
’cause what’s better than a sexy back?
Cue Justin Timberlake…
*The thing I’m holding in the photo is a TRX Rip Trainer. See the sport cord attached to the bar on the left side? That makes it hard, because that resistance is pulling me to the left, so I’m resisting it with my core and using the right side of my body to keep me facing forward. It works your core like a mother. Just sayin’
**Photo taken of me by Adrian Li
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Pencil It In…

So I’ve so busy lately (thankfully) that I haven’t been able to get in any chill time. But what the H?! Yes, I said H. I’m trying to lay off the F word. And the F letter. I’ve had to resort to penciling in fun time/ social time/ me time/ date time now. Yeah, I’m that person. Whatever. I feel like that’s kind of lame, but it actually helps.

The other week I blocked out time on my day planner so I could go take a yoga class and chill out/stretch. It felt great. Last night I was able to attend a friend’s birthday dinner because I moved my clients up and refused to see another one. Today I blocked out time to have lunch with girlfriends I hadn’t seen in years.
I mean what else was I going to do? Work or clean house? Pshaw.
It’s weird but it’s the only way to keep a little balance in my life. If I didn’t block out the time, I wouldn’t have been able to enjoy yoga, or see friends. Work hard, play hard. Balance, baby!
image via
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Body Power

So I saw this video on Facebook about two minutes ago, shared by my friends and TRX colleagues, Fraser Quelch and Hayley Hollander. It’s INSANE to know what your body has the power to do. Watch and enjoy. And remember to pick up your jaw when you’re done. Thanks.

When you’re working out, think about the MOVEMENT you want to do, not the muscle group you want to target. Multi-planar movement is what your body does. Train it every way possible.
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