Self-Improvement for the Self-Employed
Being a small business owner can be thrilling and exciting, but it can also come with some challenges. If you are running the business alone, or with limited resources, it’s easy to get caught up in a cycle of super hard work and very little downtime. The highs of success can lead to burn-out and both mental and physical exhaustion.
Which is why it’s incredibly important to take time out on a regular basis to practice self-improvement to refresh your focus and effectiveness. September happens to be Self-Improvement Month! We are giving you weekly tips on how to invest in your own success for the entire month. One week at a time so it’s not overwhelming or impossible!
WEEK 1: EDUCATION & LEARNING
For the first week, let’s be like the kids heading back to school! When you start a business, you try to get your ducks in a row with a business plan, applications for licenses and permits, setting up accounts, etc. As you step into an active role, you might find yourself needing to take on duties covering a wide range of skills, like accounting, HR, marketing and IT. These may be newly developed skills, or tasks that take you longer to complete.
Take a few minutes to think about which tasks you struggle with on a regular basis. What takes you the longest to finish or figure out? Is it month-end accounting or updating your website? Is there something you wish you could do faster or better? Once you determine the key areas for you to focus on improving, start searching for some local classes or online education options.
There is a vast network of online resources to help you expand knowledge for running a business. Many of these are every small business owner’s favorite word – FREE! Check out Entrepreneur.com for their article, 15 Free Online Learning Sites Every Entrepreneur Should Visit. You can find certification classes, DIY videos and podcasts.
Local Classes and Resources
Have you researched local opportunities for business development or learning? Most cities have a Small Business Administration office. Here you’ll find a plethora of information and help on specific topics, or mentors available. Community colleges are an inexpensive way to hone your skills at a relatively quick pace. Many local high schools will also offer adult education classes in a variety of topics, like bookkeeping or graphic design.
Even your local library has business planning and educational resources! Not only can you find books or magazines relating to building a business, or specific business related skills, but you can possibly even perform some business functions on the city library website!
There is a wealth of information out there for small business owners. The hardest part will be paring it down and prioritizing what to tackle first!
Next week we will cover practicing mindfulness