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5 Ways To Balance Life & Social Media

Millions of people use social media on a daily basis. There are a lot of advantages to social media. Social media can platform your business, help you to keep up with friends and family and even give support during challenging times. But with those advantages, come disadvantages. Just as with most things in life, you need to balance the pros with the cons.

Here are 5 ways you can better balance life and social media:

Don’t Compare

We have all done it. We look at all the amazing pictures of people on social media and wonder, what are they doing that I am not? In some fashion, we all have felt that feeling for a moment. But, what is important to realize is that what you are seeing is just a moment in time on social media for that person. I call it the highlight reel. You are seeing a bunch of the best clips of people’s lives. What is dangerous about this highlight reel is that you are comparing a bunch of people’s best moments to your entire life. This can decrease confidence and be very discouraging.

The Fix

When you are scrolling through social media, get real. Understand that every single person that you are viewing has faced trials and tribulations. Cut the ruminating during and after your time on social media and accept that you saw a moment in time for someone, and recognize you can’t realistically compare their one moment in time to your entire life.

 

Limit Your Time

Your time on social media can add up quickly. Five minutes in the morning, 15 minutes at lunch and 20 minutes at night; that adds up. What if you took 30 of those 40 minutes back? Could you get that run in? Could you read a chapter in a book? Would an extra 210 minutes a week help you work toward that goal? By limiting your social media time you increase the ability to get some time back in your day to help you achieve bigger goals.

The Fix

Start by becoming more aware of your social media time. Be honest and track how many minutes you spend on social media. Then, cut that time in half and take the time you get back to do something healthy for your mind or body. If you feel you can’t get away from social media because you need to make posts for your business. Take time to look into programs where you enter in your social media for the week or month and it automatically releases it for you each day. This will keep you off social media, where you may blend doing business with checking your personal profile.

 

Avoid Distractions

Social media can be a distraction. While in the middle of a project you get a pop up on your phone that says “John Doe just followed you.” This two second distraction soon becomes 20 as you look at John’s Page, thank him for following you and then scroll through Twitter.

The Fix

When you are working on a project, be sure all social media tabs on your computer are closed. Do not enable push notifications on your phone for social media. Research shows it takes 15 minutes to get into flow (or the zone). When you are interrupted, it takes that much time to get back into the zone. Don’t waste your time, avoid distractions and use social media as a reward for getting work done.

 

Don’t Worry About Being “Liked”

Some people use “likes” on social media as way to boost confidence and get approval. While it is okay to want people to like your posts, be sure of two things: First, that you do not post out content and then hover over your social media to see every single like that comes in. That is a waste of your time and energy. Second, that you are not posting a picture or content to feel personally validated. Be sure that you are happy and approved with yourself, don’t give that control out to others.

The Fix

If you are that person that hovers over social media to see every like that comes in, instead, make a posting and put a time limit to checking your social media. Post your content and then check your social media 30 minutes later. Go work on a goal or task and then as a reward check your social media status. If you post to gain acceptance from others, complete an honest self-check of all sectors of your life and make sure that you are content with where you are in those areas of life. If you feel off in one or more of those areas, take the time you spend on social media and instead channel it into improving the area in your life that you feel needs some working on.

 

Put Your Main Life Roles First

The goal here is to be sure that you have given quality time and attention to those people (including you) you love and care for before you give your time to social media. For example, the parents who use social media at the dinner table may be missing opportunities to ask their children about their day. Or, when you are on social media and around your partner, you may miss opportunities to touch or learn more about each other. And, when it comes to you, if you are on a walk alone and flipping through your social media, you may miss an amazing idea that your mind has. Alone time is a great time for self-reflection and the generation of new and potentially successful ideas.

The Fix

During important moments put your phone away. If you want to take photos on your phone, only use the phone for taking photos. Make the commitment to yourself that you will not swipe the push notifications or post the photo you just took onto social media. Be present and in the moment. You can always post the photos you take later on. When you are alone with yourself, set the phone aside for at least the first 15 minutes and take time to reflect.

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5 Mid-Day Routines to Help You Reset & Get on Track

 

We often hear of routines to help you have better mornings; a way to start your day off on the right foot. Mornings are extremely important and play a major role in your day. There are so many benefits in starting your mornings off with being grateful, having a plan, eating breakfast, drinking water, stretching, etc. However, starting your day off on the right track and keeping it there is just as important.

Here are 5 mid-day routines to help you reset and get on track when the afternoon slump attempts an attack.

1.Take a Clarity Break

 

Sometimes, sitting in the same environment, hour after hour can make us feel delirious and cyclical. Our eyes need a break, our legs need a stretch and we need an overall different perspective for a moment.  To be a better you, better employee or leader, you may need to step away.

 

The Fix

Take a clarity break. A clarity break is just a break that allows you to step away from your environment to gain a new perspective. Some clarity breaks do need to be longer than others, but mid-day, you may not have too much time. Instead, take a mini clarity break and walk away for 15 minutes.  The clarity break needs to be out of the office or work space you have been in. Take this time to go for a walk outside. Use this break to look at nature, be solution oriented and visualize the stress or problems releasing from you.

2. Reexamine goals

 

While we may start off our day with goals in mind, it is easy to let the hecticness and distractions veer us off track. Knowing we are off track can make us feel unproductive, overwhelmed, stressed and all over the place.

 

The Fix

Reset yourself mid-day by checking your to-do list or schedule. Create a habit of not letting the day slip you by without checking your planner. When you feel all over the place, stop for a moment and check your planner to see what your goals were for that day. Have you lost focus? If so, don’t get discouraged, just get back on track. Put the distractions that you can aside, or the new to-do’s on another day’s agenda and stay focused on your tasks for that day. Sticking to your schedule can increase your confidence and feelings of accomplishment.

3. Eat a Snack

Glucose is brain fuel. Your brain is a very energy needy organ and if you want it to work well, you need to fuel it. When the day passes by and you haven’t eaten, you might get grumpy, become “on edge,” “irritated” or get a headache. To reset, you might need some food.

 

The Fix

Eat. Grab a snack and eat. At work, have handy foods around you that increase your memory and focus like avocado, nuts, blueberries, celery and, lucky you, dark chocolate (Disclaimer: in moderation!). We are all very busy nowadays, but that should not be an excuse to not fuel your body and mind, especially if you want your brain to work effectively and top notch so you are successful.

4. Get Inspired

 

As the day goes on, things change, distractions pop up, the afternoon slump sets in and you just might need a double dose of motivation to keep going. Especially if you have half the work day left, kids to help complete homework and dinner to make; not to mention that the calendar is showing it is only Tuesday. To reset, you may need a quick boost in motivation.

 

The Fix

Get inspired. While you can’t always change your immediate situation, you can change your perspective. Take time during your mid-day to look at inspiring quotes, pictures and even visualize your goals coming to fruition. This is not the time to get on social media and check out the “fabulous” lives of everyone and self-pity, but rather to be inspired by what you have and where you desire to grow and be. I encourage you to surround yourself and your work space with things/pictures that are upbeat, colorful and goal focused. Then, at mid-day, take time to reflect and look around at your space. If you have a vision board, your work space is a great place to put it up and take time each day to reflect on it.

5. Take Deep Breathes

 

With the fast pace of our society, we sometimes forget to breathe. Yes, we are breathing, but we fail to stop and just take a deep breathe to center and be present.  Failing to just stop and deep breathe can keep us in a go-go, rush-rush and somewhat impulsive mode.

 

The Fix

Take deep breathes. Taking several deep breathes at mid-day can help you to feel more calm and neutralize stress. Make deep breathing at mid-day a habit, even on non-stressful days. Deep breathing can bring mental clarity, re-center you from distractions and help you to be more present.

 

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5 Tips for Small Business Success

As a small business, we face certain challenges that can add stress and anxiety to our daily lives. It is not always easy meeting payroll, hiring, figuring out what platform to market on and managing the finances. But, millions of small business owners do these things every day and their businesses thrive.

Here are 5 Tips for Small Business Success

Write Down Why You Started

As a small business owner, you may find yourself living on a rollercoaster. Somedays you feel like you are going to take over the entire universe while other days you fire yourself and walk off the job. And, early on in the small business process, you have more firing and walking off the job kind of days. It is in these days that you must remember your “why.” Why are you doing this? Why are you so passionate?

During the days that you are “taking over the universe” and are more clear minded, write down the answers to those question so when you get discouraged you will remember why you started and you will be less likely to give up. List out support systems and create vision boards so that when times feel dark, you know who you can reach out to and have a physical vision of the direction you want to go.

Step Away

As a small business owner, you probably take your work home, talk to your partner about it, and answer calls on the weekends. But never taking a step away can lead to burnout. The last thing a business owner should do is make decisions based on feelings like stress, frustration and impulsivity. Working on you and/or your family independently of your business is a great way to refresh and gain clarity so you can be even stronger in your business. Successful people take breaks.

Give yourself at least one day a week where you step away completely. Set boundaries with clients or customers and they will respect your time even more. If you really feel that you cannot take one day, start small with time away. Take 30-60 minutes at least one time per day to do something that clears your mind. Do not answer business calls during this time, instead, try something like getting in touch with nature, taking a bath, or working-out. The better you are to your mind and body, the clearer decisions you will make for your business, clients and customers.

Hurdle the Tough Times Quickly & Learn From Them

As a small business owner, you are learning something new every day. Business owners switch hats all the time; from finances to legal to day to day operations to HR. And, it is no secret that mistakes will be made.

If you want to be successful in business, don’t ruminate, internalize and dwell on those mistakes. Instead, chop it up to a learning lesson and press forward being cautious not to make that mistake a second time. Hurdling barriers and setbacks quickly will help you to minimize your stress and preserve energy in order to continue growing your business.

Get a Mentor

So many people have been in your shoes before you. They know the puddles you should not even try to step in and they can also give insight into decisions you are facing.

Reach out to these people and ask them for their mentorship. If you do not have a mentor, try networking to meet likeminded people that can share ideas with you. However, as your business grows, if you do not have a mentor, keep your eyes open for someone that you can call on for support. Most successful people want to help you grow and develop and will be glad to guide you. Just make sure that you are open-minded when your mentor talks with you and that you come with questions or a direction to the meeting as to not waste their time.

Make Sure You Have Financial Options

While you switch hats, ride the rollercoaster, take calls from customers on days off, and try to somehow maintain life balance, the one thing a business owner must have peace of mind and security with is finances (personally and professionally).

As a small business, make sure you work with a banker or company that is transparent and that you can trust. As your business grows, there will be growing pains, and that is a good thing, especially if you have a banker or lender who supports small businesses and simplifies things. Be sure to speak up to your lender about various types of resources, loans, business credit cards, and cash advances that best fit your niche. One lender worth checking out is Fundera because they are a bias-free lender marketplace for small businesses. This can be a great resource to find what best fits your specific niche.


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