These healthy business habits can help you achieve more balance
Your probably know by now that I am not going to simply give you a list of business development hacks. For those of us creating and growing a law business, we need a more balanced approach to healthy business habits. Keyword: healthy.
Many entrepreneur gurus will tell you to keep “grinding” as you build your business. While that works in short bursts, think about what happens to a machine if you grind its gears too long. Even machines need to be oiled and rested from time to time.
However, growth matters in all business ventures. With that in mind, I offer these tips for growing your law business while taking care of your body, mind and personal life:
Sleep well and eat well
I know some of you will tell me you can function on four hours of sleep, but the vast majority of adult humans need at least seven hours. With too little sleep, your body and brain simply cannot function at their best, so set a strong foundation for both personal and business success by prioritizing sleep. Aim for a consistent bedtime and rise time.
You also need quality, nutritious food to feel your best and work at top form. If you have fallen into a fast-food or processed food habit, resolve to add more fresh and nutritionally dense foods into your routine. Take a true break for meals as well and avoid eating in your car or while multitasking. (Read more about the multitasking myth.)
Make time to move
I deliberately chose the word “move” because it’s about more than a hard-core workout or traditional exercise. Adding movement to your day can begin with walking away from your computer for five minutes every hour. Take the stairs, park in the far corner of the lot or use a standing desk to help incorporate movement into your daily business routine.
Next, find exercise that you actually enjoy. Some people live for the challenge of Crossfit or training for marathons. Others connect better with the fun of Zumba or a dance class. You know yourself best, so choose exercise that keeps you coming back for more. Once it becomes a habit, it can fuel the rest of your life.
Give your brain a rest
That five-minute break from your computer also serves another purpose: It gives your brain a chance to rest and refocus. Ideally, you will also take some much longer breaks throughout your day and week.
If you’re stuck on a difficult business problem, plowing through it can be counterproductive. People often experience their most creative and innovative thinking during rest time, so use it your advantage.
Carve out focus time
Take note of when you create your best work. Most of us have specific times of day when we seem to work in flow. Ideas and production come more easily during those times of day. In order to develop a successful business, you need that focus and flow time to flesh out business goals and strategies.
Once you know when you do your best work, block out that time on your calendar. Turn your phone to silent and shut down all the extra windows on your screen. Do not check email. Allow your brain to concentrate on one project at hand for at least 90 minutes. (Why 90 minutes? Start here.)
Innovate and streamline
We have touched on this idea in past blogs on time management. In order to do do your best work, and allow your business the opportunity to expand, you need to find ways to streamline your processes. You can also identify areas where it makes sense to hire staff or outsource some functions.
Measure your efforts
Which activities (and cases or clients) have led to business growth? Which ones have resulted in too much lost time. If you don’t take the time to measure your goals and audit how you spend your time, you might never know. On the other hand, eliminating time-wasters will reward you with more mental energy and more time to spend on business-building work.
Learn something new
Part of working in a growth mindset means challenging yourself and the status quo. Expanding your awareness and knowledge can take a number of forms, but it’s something you should work into your weekly practice. Attend conferences, listen to podcasts, read business journals or watch TED Talks.
Commit to learning something new, big or small, once a week. New information can help you stay fresh and inspired as you build your business.
Connect with others
While you might operate as a solopreneur, you need other people along the way. Your spouse or partner, a mentor, other lawyers and fellow entrepreneurs can create a strong support system. Turn to others when you need new ideas or an outside perspective.
At LawBank, our shared office space allows independent lawyers and small law firms to interact and collaborate. Many of our members felt isolated as entrepreneurs prior to finding office space that encouraged interaction. Consider a coworking space like LawBank, in addition to other networking activities, as one way to build your business support system.
To learn more about our lawyer executive suites and lawyer coworking spaces, contact us. We offer three locations in Denver.