Reducing stress in business is near and dear to my heart. As someone who is a recovering stress head, I can tell you how much learning to stay calm has helped my business.

My chaotic business story:

When I was starting out as a solopreneur I was desperate to learn every single thing I could.

So I consumed every piece of free advice that I could. It’s not a bad way to learn about business but I promise you it’s the slowest.

Fast forward a couple of years and I had all this knowledge but no strategy on how to use it. Not only was I trying to do it all: Twitter, Pinterest, Facebook, email marketing, networking, selling digital products, making digital products, writing blog posts but I was continuously tying to get clients too!

Believe me when I say that there was so much stress in my business it made long term planning really hard to do. It was like being stuck in the middle of a stress snow storm that never ends!

How I keep sane:

5 years after I started this journey, I took a step back and started to think about strategies. I could use all these tactics I’d learnt – sure, but being calmer in my approach to business would be a better solution. Being more focused, clear and consistent wouldn’t only lower the stress in my business but it would make it a better experience for my customers.

As a result, I started implementing strategies that meant I was being proactive and not a reactive stress head.

Once you start trimming off the stress in your business it makes it easier to implement newer and better strategies for a healthier you and a strong profit!

Here are my top tips:

1. Reduce Your Workload For Less Stress In Your Business + Team

Try asking yourself:

  • What are your business goals?
  • Is the work you’re doing helping you to achieve those goals or bring in income?
  • What are your urgent tasks?
  • What are your important tasks?
  • Is this task valuable when it comes to building awareness of my business, improving sales, or meeting goals? (if not get rid of it – it’s only causing undue stress in your business)

Truly assess whether your daily activities are helping you achieve goals or not.

Questions to help you reduce business stress + workload:

  • Are you trying to be on all social media platforms and not getting anywhere? Then it’s time to cut out all the platforms, choose one and focus solely on that.
  • Are you spending hours researching blog posts that aren’t getting you any feedback? Then maybe pause your blog post writing and start thinking about what you could change about your process, preferably something that takes less time and has more impact.
  • Are you constantly reading and researching about how to improve your business? Great! But if you’re trying to DIY everything remember that it takes time and there are only so many hours in a day.
  • In addition, start thinking about if you really want to know how to set up google analytics or if it’s literally more valuable to hire someone to just do it for you. It’s always important to decide on your goals so that the stress you feel in business is, at the very least in line, with your goals rather than in line with something unimportant or useless.

Thinking About Offloading Some Stress: See how business support works in action.

2. Set Aside Time For Yourself

It’s so important that you take care of you.

You can do this by setting up time for hobbies, reading or simply being alone (#introvertproblems)

Think about practicing mindfulness if life keeps you really busy.

It’s just really important that you make sure don’t work every minute of the day. And, it’s really important to be aware of what helps relieve your stress and what helps you thrive in your business. Introspection is core to finding processes that work for your unique needs.

Building a business is a marathon and not a race to the finish line. Because of this it’s really important that your business has pacing activities integrated into your working plan.

3. Do You Have Team That Understands You + Keeps You Grounded?

Think about the social groups you have online and in your real life.

Do you have accountability partners? Or people that understand what you’re talking about and can give you a little perspective?

Having someone who can remind you of your initial goal or someone who can keep you focused will really help keep you on track.

Basically, someone who can pop in and keep you from adding extra stress to your plate and more focus to your business.

Why online support matters to you and your business:

Perhaps, like me, you’ve resisted having online supports because you’re totally independent and you’ve never needed anyone. Yeah… it works pretty well…for a bit! The thing with reaching out to someone you’ve been chatting with online or someone who gets what you’re doing is that you get the fresh perspective.

It’s amazing the feedback you can get when you simply explain what you’re wanting to do to someone else. Remember that a problem shared is a problem halved – is there a better way to reduce business stress than simply making it 50% smaller?

So if you’re feeling things are piling up then reach out to an acquaintance online or to that friend who also runs their own business. Run your project by them and what you’ve been doing and ask what they think of your plan and progress.

Just don’t forget to offer to do the same for them!

4. Lean In To That Social Network

Having a business network rocks! Like I said above.

But having a social network just for you matters. It doesn’t matter whether you need a coffee break to talk about your stress or you need someone to just watch the kids for a couple of hours as you finish off some final touches on a client project. Having a social support system matters.

two women working together to reduce the burden of business stress

If…

  • it’s personal share it with a partner or bestie.
  • you’re feeling stressed share it.
  • it’s business stress share it in a Facebook group.

Set dates that you can look forward to. You know, that place with the amazing Turkish food….it’s calling your name! Try setting up events and milestones that you can celebrate with friends means a. that you’ll follow through and b. that you can still have a life outside the stress in business.

5. Set Goals + Keep Your Perspective

Are you working with a goal in mind?

If you’re working without a clear end goal in mind then how do you know when you’ve achieved what you aspire to be?

Honestly, if you’re just looking at improving conversion rates or sticking in peoples’ minds then you’re going to constantly try things and have no structure. Which will make you feel like a failure or completely lost and unsure in how you achieved what you were going for.

Create a goal to keep business stress at bay:

Smart goals are always great but you don’t have to go that deep.

It can be arbitrary but realistic. For instance, if you’re getting about 5 conversions every second week then you’re maybe averaging 10 new customers a month. Set your goal at something reasonable. Let’s put it up to 20. You can aim to get 20 new customers a month – that’s your realistic goal. You can set an ideal goal of, say 40.

Then make a plan. What are you going to try for the next few months that will help you achieve that goal. Outline what it is you’ll be doing and then stick to it. Repeat, repeat, repeat.

what are your goals? step 1 define step 2 plan step 3 action step 4 achieve.

Finding stress relief when you run your own business.

By making your week simpler and productive you’re going to reduce your stress in business and in life. Setting up a repeatable process that you can monitor and record will mean you’re not reinventing the wheel every week or month and that you start sitting back and actively learning and reflecting on what works and what doesn’t.

6. Outsource Those Big Stressful Business Projects

We all have goals in business, whether we write them down and lay them out like in the method above or whether we just wing it and hope for the best.

My big projects may be small in comparison to your ideas and vice versa. It’s important to remember that your business is unique. So stress in my business may not even equate to stress in yours! So before you even begin it’s important to identify what makes you feel stressed.

Is it…

…lack of time?

…that you don’t want to plan it?

…lack of knowledge?

…getting lost in the details?

…that you don’t want to implement it?

…not being able to see the details?

…that it needs all your attention?.

Consider what you could outsource to reduce the type of stress you’re feeling about your big projects.

How do you know what to outsource in your business?

For instance, if you’re stressed about the time it takes and getting lost in the details then perhaps it’s time to look for a project manager. If you think you’re the only person that can do it then maybe it’s time to hire business support for all your other work while you focus on the project at hand.

There are lots of ways to reduce your workload and the inevitable stress of solopreneurdom.

7. Consult Someone Who Can Erase Your Stress + Give Solid Business Advice

If you’re feeling a little stuck or getting conflicting advice then maybe it’s time to get advice from a professional. Whether it’s an in-depth consultation with a business coach or simply a free advice call to help you clarify your position and next move.


Next Steps

Make sure that you take some time to figure out the best ways you thrive when your business gets overwhelming. Then head to the comments and let us your best tips for stress management as a business owner.