Running your own business can be challenging, especially if you run that business from home. A home-based business comes with a lot of challenges and distractions. For one, the distractions at home such as the kids, the dishes, and the TV can cause work to be pushed aside. On the other hand, it can also be tempting to work all hours of the day and night in order to get your business off the ground. Both of these scenarios can cause your success to come to a screeching halt, which is why you need to have more work-life balance.

If you want your business to be successful, you need to make time for your personal life as well as business. That personal time will allow you to refresh your mind, allowing you to make better business decisions and be more productive. You also need to make sure you’re dedicated to work and not allowing distractions to interfere.

A successful home-based business requires a delicate balance. Here’s how to balance work and life for home-based businesses.

Plan ahead.

If you want to balance work and life more, you need to plan ahead. Not having a plan can make you more susceptible to distraction and not getting things done. On the flip side, when you’re flying by the seat of your pants, it’s hard to keep up with your daily tasks; you can find yourself working overtime and rushing to complete projects. In fact, according to Rescue Time, 26% of work is done outside of normal working hours.

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But, a solid plan will keep you on track and you’ll always know what you need to get done in a day. First, any business owner should be setting goals. Setting smart, long-term goals will give you something to work towards. Besides long-term goals, you should also come up with a weekly schedule. Planning out what you need to accomplish each day for the upcoming week will allow you to get stuff done efficiently so that you don’t end up losing out on your personal time. Consider trying an app like Week Plan to make weekly planning easier.

Create a dedicated work space.

If your work space is set up on the living room couch, it’ll be staring you in the face during the evenings and weekends. This is too tempting for many home-based business owners. To create more work-life balance, you need to stay away from your business during personal and family time. Of course, not everyone has the opportunity to have their own home office. But, you can still create a dedicated work space in your home. Section off an area in your home and dedicate it strictly to work. At the same time, designate an area of your home to be a business-free zone in order to avoid temptations to work during personal time.

You might also want to consider a coworking space. A coworking space offers a shared office space but with independent activity. Getting out of the house and being around other entrepreneurs might be exactly what you need to be more productive and achieve a better work-life balance. According to the Harvard Business Review, many people thrive in coworking spaces because they see their work as meaningful, they have more job control, and they feel part of a community.

Invest in automation tools.

Next, you’ll also want to invest in some automation tools to save you time. The more areas you can automate and streamline, the more time you’ll have for family, friends, and yourself. As a small, home-based business owner, you might be wary of investing in automation tools, but don’t worry. There are a number of affordable, even free, automation tools and WordPress plugins you can use to improve your work-life balance.

For instance, you can automate your email communications with an email marketing service like Mailchimp; you can sign up with them for free. You can also check out a free tool like Invoicely to easily take care of your invoicing requirements. With the right tools, you can easily automate all of your most tedious business tasks from social media to customer relations. The less time you spend on mundane tasks, the more time you have to focus on what’s important like generating leads and increasing conversions.

Outsource some of your tasks.

If you’re really swamped with your growing home-based business, it might be time to outsource some of your tasks. It’s hard to run a business all by yourself, but it’s also important not to hire full-time employees before you’re ready. That’s where outsourcing comes. With outsourcing, you can hire freelancers to complete certain tasks instead of having to worry about hiring a full-time employee.

The freelancing industry is getting bigger and bigger every day. In fact, according to a 2018 survey, there were 56.7 million Americans who freelanced that year, that number is up 3.7 million from 2014. There are tons of qualified freelancers in every area to help you better balance your work and life as well as grow your business. You can outsource writing (for publishing blog content or email marketing), website design, social media, bookkeeping,customer support, and more.

Avoid platforms like Upwork though. Although hiring remote freelancers there can be very affordable, the quality of work you receive can vary greatly. Instead, create your own freelance job listing to attract quality freelancers.

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Over to you.

With these tips for how to balance work and life for home-based businesses, not only will you have more freedom but you’ll be able to better grow your business. A successful entrepreneur isn’t one who’s stressed out and overworked, rather, a successful business-owner is one who’s able to enjoy a life outside of work as well.