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How to Take Control of your Business and Stop Feeling like it Controls You

I couldn’t tell you the number of conversations I have had with business owners who talk about being burnt out, dog tired and anxious.

So many of them talk about spending far too much time in the business dealing with issues, fire-fighting, and reacting to last minute dramas. Surely life - and business life - should be more than this!

Yet, many felt that maybe this is all their life is meant to be - and putting even more hours into the business might help sort out the issues and reward them with more money in their back pocket.

Life for them was spinning out of control; this treadmill was getting faster and faster and they couldn’t get off; their business was controlling them, and they knew it should be the other way round, but they didn’t know how.

I know they are not alone - you may be one of them!

But if you find yourself working 80 plus hours in the week and still finding you’re not getting everything done, then here are 3 pieces of advice for you:

1. Focus on creating value, not putting in more time

Not every hour of the day brings equal value. There are some hours in the day when you are at your most productive and creative - save those for exactly that.

Stop wasting those precious hours on the mundane tasks!

Often business owners get caught up in the minute detail of the business, only to waste their best and most effective hours sorting out trivial things.

Learn to invest your best hours for creating maximum impact.

These are the hours you should be setting aside for stepping back, getting a wider perspective; making high-value strategic decisions; planning; goal setting; vision building.

There is an old phrase that still has great value: focus on working ON the business and not IN the business.

2. Create processes and systems

Many of you may well feel trapped by your business: things you need to do; things you ought to do; things you should do - all of which brings stress and anxiety.

As a Grand Rapids Business Coach, one of my first pieces of advice to clients is to develop system and processes that will allow you the time and the freedom to step back and work ON the business.

This kind of time also allows you time to refocus, to breathe and relax a bit.

Developing systems and processes will also help create a business that can work without your personal, daily oversight and micromanagement. Don’t lose yourself in the detail!

These systems should be designed to be scalable, manageable and adjustable.

All of which will enable you to …

3. Learn to let go

Now that you have all of those things in place, it’s time to let go. You can’t control everything that goes on in your business - not only will it drive you crazy, but you will become your own bottle neck and create a self-inflicted glass ceiling.

Build those systems, controls and processes that will enable you to step back away from your business and gain freedom.

Keep your business in proper perspective.

As David Finkel says in article in Forbes: “I am not my business, and neither are you. When you are clear on this, it makes it easier for you to put a hard stop each day.”

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