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Can’t Stop Working? Slow Down Sister!

In nine months of running my first e-commerce business selling gift products, I’ve learned some things that are important for small business owners to understand before it's too late.

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It’s no secret that entrepreneurs who love what they do can become obsessed with their businesses. This can lead to working long and unusual hours, chasing the next best thing, and trying to keep up with an endless to-do list.

In nine months of running my first e-commerce business selling gift products, I’ve learned some important lessons. No, not about marketing or sales or social media strategy. These lessons help you

1. Done is better than perfect. Take action. Any action. It’s okay to plan and assess different options, but don’t get stuck in analysis paralysis. Sometimes you just have to choose and learn along the way. It may work. It may not work. Either you’ll get it right or you’ll learn.

2. Mistakes are inevitable. You must be humble enough to be a beginner at everything. Things are changing so fast in this world. What works for one person or business may not work for you. Try things and be okay with “mistakes.” It’s the best way to learn what works for your business.

3. Ask for help. I surround myself with people who inspire me, teach me, and hold me accountable. I ask my family for help. My friends support me on bad days. It is easy to get caught up in negative self-talk so connect with people to keep you going.

4. Hire a coach. My best investments this year have been on coaching. I’ve worked with life, spiritual and business coaches. I joined a mastermind group and several group coaching programs. Learning from other people can help you save time, money, and stress from having to figure everything out on your own.

5. Follow your intuition. If you’re not used to turning inward, you may need to practice tapping into your intuition. Sometimes you know what is best for you so do what feels best to you. I tend to do what feels right to me even if it doesn’t make sense to others.

6. If you get tired, learn to rest. Understand energy management and pay attention what gives you energy and what drains it. You can’t run on empty. Pay attention to the signals your body sends you. Take mental breaks. Being able to slow down and relax will do wonders for your creativity and work.

7. Don’t take things personally. Let people and things go if they are not worth your energy or time. You’re not for everyone, and everyone is not for you.

8. Things take time. There is no such thing as overnight success. Small business owners work hard and sometimes alone. So lessons 3, 4 and 6 are particularly important.

9. Practice self-kindness. Set reasonable standards for yourself so you’re not racing towards something that ultimately won’t fulfill you.

You will never regret taking care of your mental and physical health. In fact, prioritizing your well-being will help you do better in business. You’ll show up with more clarity, purpose, energy, and mood. You’ll be able to invite more joy and playfulness and reduce the stress in your life. That’s always a good thing, right?

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