Work life balance: It’s been a buzz word for over 20 years. We all want it, but how realistic is it really? Especially if you run your own business?

It’s entirely possible! Everyone can create a balance between work and play and build a business they are proud of.

The secret: it’s all about You!

Have you noticed how some entrepreneurs never achieve balance even when they have a business model that works, a sales pipeline that is consistent and the business is effectively resourced?

That’s because you need to choose work life balance and develop your skills.

Most entrepreneurs are technical experts, highly experienced in their field and they dedicate time to learning how to run a business. The other part of the equation is how you interact with your business and the tools and techniques you have to navigate being an entrepreneur.

Only the most successful make this investment.

If you feel overwhelmed, never switch off and don’t have time to do the things you want to outside of your business, then that’s a big clue there is scope for you to develop your personal toolkit as a business leader.

It’s your strategies, techniques and beliefs that are killing your work life balance. Not your business. The great news: you can up level each of these to get more balance immediately.

We all start our businesses to achieve different levels of freedom: financial freedom through uncapped income, decisions making freedom and autonomy over our time.

Here are three simple steps to reclaim control over your time and bring back balance.

Be More Effective: Do More in Less Time

Quality work time trumps quantity of working hours any day. If your days seem to run on and on without an end in sight, try these three tips:

Develop a laser focus around what outcome you want to achieve and what specific work streams and actions will advance this. This is where you need to spend your time. There will always be more you can do but focusing on what will create results will give you the space to stop working for the day.

Decide how long something should take and stick to it. Work expands to fill the time available for its completion. This is Parkinson’s Law. Simply defining the length of a task and working to that time frame can free up so much of your day. You will be amazed how productive you can be.

Shift your brain wave state to be more productive. Not all brain wave states are created equal! If you’re problem solving, innovating or doing big picture thinking you’ll want to be in a different brainwave state to when you are talking to clients or doing detail orientated work. Developing your skills in this area simply makes work easier.

Be More Present: Learn How to Switch Off

Thinking about work over dinner? Half listening to your partner and kids because your head is elsewhere? Lying in bed with thoughts circulating through your mind before bed and first thing in the morning?

If you answered yes to any of these, the antidote is presence.

When work is always in your thoughts, you are either in a state of anxiety or excitement. Anxious about what could happen or excited about what is coming.

Whichever it is, you’re living in the future and the physiological response to both of these emotions is the same. Your body is in fight or flight and you have tunnel vision, unable to take your attention off the perceived threat.

To switch off and return to the present moment, try these three tricks:

Activate through your senses to be in the present moment. Simply tune into your senses. Experience the sights, sounds, tastes, smells and sensation of exactly where you are to get back into the present moment. Once you are back on the present moment the anxiety and excitement will dissipate.

Slow your brainwaves to shift your focus. Hypnosis is simply a process to slow your brainwaves. Even five minutes of hypnosis at the end of your day will transition you from work to play.

Give someone your full attention. We cannot hold two thoughts at the same time. When you actively listen to someone with every part of yourself, work will slip away.

Be More Curious: Change Up Your Beliefs

Our beliefs shape our experience in every part of our life. What you believe about running a business – is exactly what you will experience. Your beliefs effect every part of your life as an entrepreneur from how easy you believe it is to make money, to how possible you think work life balance is for you.

Honestly ask yourself these questions to uncover some of the beliefs that might be affecting your lack of work life balance:

  • What do I believe about how hard it is to run a business?
  • How many hours a week do I believe it will take to run my business and make the money I want?
  • What have I been told about how much entrepreneurs work?

And finally, ask yourself: Do these beliefs help me build a business and life I truly love?