If you have a “normal” 9 to 5 job, it can be easy to justify spending all that time at work. If we have our own business however, why is it that we feel guilty about spending our time on our goals and our clients instead of with our families?
Tara Mollel, a business coach, brings up two common reasons why we might feel this guilt:
- We don’t prioritise our own needs.
Many times, especially in parents, we tend to prioritise the needs of others over our own needs. This can be seen often when trying to take care of our families or clients and ignoring time that we need to rejuvenate ourselves. Our natural instinct is to help others; however, we need to remember that others may not have our best interest at heart. If we don’t take care of ourselves, then eventually we can get burnt out and not be able to help anyone.
- We feel we have to meet all our needs at once.
Instead of taking it one step at a time, we tend to focus on the big picture and all the things that need to get done. So even if we are working on that first step, our mind tends to think about all the things that we are not doing. Setting up ridiculous expectations for ourselves. When we do not meet those expectations… that’s when the guilt comes in.
So, what can we do to help alleviate some of this guilt? Set boundaries.
Boundaries allow us to set aside time for things that we value without feeling like we are ignoring others.
Tara’s Tip #1! Outline your top 5 to 10 things that you value and want to prioritise in your life. Write out how you want to live these out and what roles these values play in your life. By designating specific times for each value, it will allow you to focus on each one while knowing that your other priorities will have their time.
For example, a common situation is handling a good work/family balance. Many times, it’s hard to tell your kids that you can’t talk now because you’re working, but if you take the time to create these boundaries, the situation can go from “I don’t have time for you” to “your time is coming, just not now”. This helps to create a balance and ensures that you are setting aside time to take care of all your priorities.
Tara’s Tip #2! Get a scheduler. Any schedule can be great to help you get organised, but a handy one to use is Trello. Through the web or app, it is always at your fingertips and makes it easy to adjust as needed! You can also share it with others on your team or your family to help keep everyone on the same page.
Remember, it’s ok to have multiple priorities and needs. And it’s ok for one of them to be taking time for ourselves. Setting some clear boundaries can help alleviate the guilt we feel, while maintaining balance in how we spend our time.
This blog is based predominantly on information given by Tara Mollel during her appearance on The Stronger Than My Excuses Show: Guilt…you can’t help others until you help yourself.