Avoid Business Burnout by Asking Yourself These 10 Questions
When you first have an idea for a new business, it’s easy to get caught up in the excitement of dreaming, brainstorming, and planning. You may be full of passion and determination, and you may be thinking of all of the new and fun things you’ll be doing as an entrepreneur. What you may not be thinking of, however, are some of the things you might hate doing in your new business. While it’s important to focus on the positive rather than the negative, it’s also important to be realistic and try to anticipate as many potential hazards and stumbling blocks as possible before embarking on any new venture.
(Side note: If you’ve already committed to and launched your business, you can still benefit from this simple test. It can help you identify ways to lighten your load and reduce stress by uncovering tasks and activities that could and should be delegated.)
Put your business idea to the test
With a pen and piece of paper, take 15-20 minutes and answer these 10 two-part questions:
1. What skills are required that you do not yet have? What would it take for you to obtain those skills?
2. Do you have any areas of weakness that might interfere with the success of your business? What will you need to do to compensate?
3. What tasks have you had a tendency to avoid in the past? Will these types of tasks be required in your new business?
4. What tasks and activities will you have to perform in your new business that you may not like? Would it be feasible for you to delegate those tasks?
5. What can you envision yourself avoiding in your new business? Will this have an impact on the success of your business, and if so, how might you prevent that?
6. What might cause you a high amount of tension and stress? How will you cope with that and prevent it from becoming an issue?
7. What would you hate to do on a regular basis, even if you got paid very well for it? Can you delegate this and trust it will be done properly?
8. Who would you dislike working with (demographics, personality types, etc)? Will you be able to avoid working closely with those people, and if not, how will you handle that?
9. Think about a few worst-case scenarios regarding your new business. Will your purpose and passion be enough to keep you moving through the rough patches? What will keep you motivated?
10. Imagine what your life will look like on a day-to-day basis, including the tasks and situations that are less than pleasant for you. Can you imagine waking up each morning excited to start the day? Or do you get the feeling you might dread your obligations and responsibilities of the day?
When looking over your responses, try to be as objective as possible. Think honestly and realistically about each answer. If you’ve discovered some potentially negative aspects to your business idea, don’t despair – all is not lost! There are many options for achieving balance rather than burnout. You could:
- – Delegate or outsource the tasks you don’t like to do
- – Go through a training program to brush up on missing skills
- – Bring on a partner with strengths in your limited areas
- – Hire a coach to help you gain new perspective or clear some of your blocks
Most importantly, remember: where there’s a will, there’s a way, so don’t be deterred by the downsides or scared off by your discoveries. Only you can decide if your business idea is still worth pursuing in spite of the negatives, or if you’d be better off to keep looking.