Being blocked is a big challenge for the solo business owner. It means you have obstacles that wear down your energy and stop you from getting things done.
You’re so busy scrambling to do a thousand little tasks at home and in your business, trying to remember a kajillion details, and feeling desperate to be productive and tick things off your list at the same time.
And in terms of your business, that means you’re potentially stagnant, caught in a cul-de-sac.
Here’s a typical week for the blocked entrepreneur, showing you 4 signs you’re blocked in business…..and a simple exercise to help you get UNstuck.
The 4 Signs You’re Blocked In Business
Sign #1 – the week starts great, but declines into treacle.
Working from home, you find that the weekend is relaxing time off. Monday is cheerful, Tuesday gets busy, Wednesday becomes hectic and then it’s suddenly Thursday afternoon and once again, you feel overwhelmed and like most of the week has gone, yet you’ve achieved nothing.
(Although your washing and vacuuming are done.)
But you had a lot to accomplish at work, and now you’re somehow behind.
It’s like you started the week sprinting freely on the tarmac and now somehow, you’re wading through treacle.
Sign #2 – you’re a zombie
In your state of anguish, your become almost catatonic, unable to work effectively and productively, scrambling around at mindless, unimportant things in a vain attempt to get SOMETHING achieved.
But all you’ve really done is delete and answer some emails.
Sign #3 – you feel a bit ripped off
By the time 6pm rolls around, you turn off your computer PC for another day and lament the fact that it’s dinner next, then bed.
You feel ripped off because you haven’t had any fun, exercise, downtime or a decent break. It feels like you’re just working all the time for no tangible outcome.
Sign #4 – your sleep is suffering
You are in bed by 10pm but you know you will be waking up five hours later, mind racing, coming up with ideas and concepts, solving problems and maybe worrying about one or two things that you had trouble solving that day.
After lying awake doing this for four or five hours, you will eventually give up hope of a restful night and start work early….probably to repeat the pattern all over again the next day.
Are You Blocked?
If at least two of these signs resonate with you, then you’re on the way to being blocked.
What’s happening is this: you are getting bogged down in unimportant stuff, losing focus, and becoming anxious.
You are so wound up in this emotional stuff that you’ve lost touch with reality, simplicity and the tools you know will work to get you on track.
Know Yourself, Know Your Clients
It’s no surprise that your clients struggle with this stuff, too. That’s why they’re coming to you in the first place!
They end up feeling this way too after their busy week of work, kids, friends and chores….who can cook a healthy meal or exercise on TOP of all that running around?
If you can help yourself get unstuck, then maybe you will be better positioned to help your clients.
Here are some questions you can use to coach yourself and get unstuck, so you can become energized and productive again.
All you need to do is set aside 30 minutes of quiet, uninterrupted time to work through these without pressure or distraction.
Create that time, schedule it in, and do this work. It WILL be worth it.
Simple Questions To Get Unstuck
- What, specifically, is overwhelming me?
- What’s different on the days that I’m feeling energized, powerful, calm and productive?
- What have I really, truly achieved this week? (make a list)
- What was my trigger for feeling overwhelmed, busy or anxious? (if you can’t work it out, start keeping a mood/feelings diary)
- What happened two steps before that trigger?
- What will I do next time I see that trigger or roadblock coming up?
- What is missing in my day, that causes me to choose to lie awake at night ruminating?
- What are the things I need to do during the day at work, to ensure I get a good night’s sleep?
- What is it about my environment or habits that I can change to help me put my mind at rest and allow me to feel calm?
- What are the rituals/time requirements I need to put in place, so I can plan and execute tasks more effectively and feel productive?
- When do I need to do those things?
- What are the specifically steps I need to do, and how do I create the space for that?
- How do I know when my week is at comfortable capacity (in terms of responsibilities/tasks) – what does it feel like?
- What is the absolute minimum I will be happy to achieve each day at work?
- What mental state do I need to create each day to set me up for success – and how do I create it?
What have you learned?
Hopefully by now, you have some inkling of what’s going on for you.
At some point in the week, your energy and enthusiasm seem to turn to dust. These questions aim to help you work out when, why, and what you can do about it.
Perhaps you are a bit like your client who is overenthusiastic and busting to get results NOW. They are so excited that they want to exercise 7 days per week, drink 3L of water per day and eat 21 perfect meals with absolutely no alcohol.
Check in with yourself and see what’s driving you, and what’s blocking you.
Your emotional states of enthusiasm and love of your business help to propel you forward.
Your logical reality is what will hold you on a steady, sustainable, productive and fulfilling course.
Both of these need to be nurtured. The trick for you is to work out the structures that will help you combine these two in absolute harmony.
Need help with managing your productivity and energy at work?
Contact me for a 15-minute chat and let’s see if I can help.