Many articles deal with the trials and tribulations of entrepreneurship, but comparatively little is said about “solopreneurship.”
Like an entrepreneur, a solopreneur is a person who starts their own business. The difference is that an entrepreneur typically has the support of a team of some kind, whereas a solopreneur runs their business alone, single-handedly.
I myself am a solopreneur, so I’m speaking from experience when I say that working for yourself is not always all it’s cracked up to be. It’s extremely important for solopreneurs to keep their sanity, but that’s easier said than done, given the stress of running a one-person business.
Here are a few tips that work for me:
1. Get Dressed
Don’t roll out of bed and start working. Instead, get up, get ready for your day, and get dressed. You don’t need to wear a full suit or even slacks, but you should at least trade your pajamas in for real clothes. Studies suggest our outfits can influence our mindsets.
2. Get Out of the House
If you work from home, it’s key to get out of the house at least once a day. I try to hit a spin class, run errands during the afternoon, or at the very least, take my dog for a walk. Sitting in front of a computer all day isn’t good for you regardless of the environment, but working from home makes it that much more difficult to get away from your desk.
I happen to work with people in a client-facing role, so I don’t feel terribly isolated. However, other solopreneurs get little interaction with others during the day. For them, simply getting out of the house to see and talk to other people can make a big difference.
3. Join a Club, Networking Society, or Group
There are many options out there in terms of networking groups that can connect you with likeminded individuals – for example, Six Degrees Society. It can be really refreshing to meet people who are on the same page as you.
Being a solopreneur is great, but it can be difficult when others don’t get what you do or can’t relate to your day-to-day life. Meeting people who are in the same boat can not only help you establish valuable professional connections, but also cultivate real friendships.
Aside from industry events, book clubs are good ways to make connections and meet people. It’s not something I ever saw myself doing, but joining a book club has been great for me! As solopreneurs, we often find ourselves completely immersed in our work. Giving ourselves a break to read books and interact with friends is really important.
4. Business Isn’t Everything
Regardless of how important it may seem, waiting an extra day to send an email or getting a blog post up late isn’t the end of the world. A recent episode of my favorite podcast touched on this idea many solopreneurs have that our work is world-shatteringly important.
It’t not. Yes, money makes the world go ’round and business is important, but at the end of the day, you need to focus on what really matters: friends, family, health, and happiness. If those things don’t come first in your life, I suggest reevaluating your priorities.
Being a solopreneur is fun, it’s hard, and it’s totally worth it – as look as you keep your priorities straight.
Michele Lando is a certified professional resume writer and the founder of Write Styles.