One of the attractive features about being an entrepreneur is that you don’t have to work for anyone else. When I was in a corporate job I hated having to beg bosses for leave, whether it was for medical reasons or simply needing to take off for a few days on vacation. I knew I had worked hard throughout the year, the time off was part of the agreement we signed on, but somehow bosses always made it out to be a big deal when an employee went to apply for leave. It was a trend that I observed happening to almost all of my friends. It’s a different matter that when I ended up starting Arras, I did not have much time for anything else!
There are always a hundred things buzzing around in your head and always hundreds more to get done. It is a haphazard, ambiguous environment that one has to learn to navigate in their own style and manner. My last work experience being with an organised, global multinational that spent hours on training employees on processes and operating procedures the shift to an unorganised, small business setup in the textile industry in India has been drastic, to say the least.
While I try to maintain a work-life balance, work often spills over to late nights and back-to-back weekends for most days. Still there are days with zero sales or low seasons, and I find myself venting out to my inner circle and asking them where I’m going wrong. Usually they will tell me that I should not be so hard on myself. When the apps on my phone hear that conversation, I’ll see all kinds of related posts on Instagram about going slow, taking breaks, rewarding oneself with treats because after all, we deserve it. I started seeing them so often that it got to me. Everyone’s out there telling me that I deserve a break but when do I actually know if I really need one?
Earlier, I would feel extremely guilty if I took a day off from work or if I spent money on something that is more of a want than a need. I am very hard on myself when it comes to work and my indulges but overtime, I started listening to what my mind was saying. Some days my brain gets so fatigued that I know it’s time to decompress. I feel lethargic on days when low nutrition diet and no exercise are usually the main culprits, when more coffee is never the long-term solution. Those days I know it’s time to hit the reset button. I guess that's what they meant when they said work to the bone. Having a purpose to your work helps in this case, in looking forward to accomplishing something but I still don't think it's necessary to reward myself each time that I do.
So, for the longest time I have been thinking of writing it down- that it’s okay to be hard on yourself, because you are the only one who knows how much you can take. If you’re not holding yourself accountable for your actions and your responsibilities, then who else will? And why would you want someone else to anyway? Being hard on yourself isn’t nearly as bad as they make it out to be on social media. It’s a good thing. It teaches you the value of time, money and self-worth.
Be hard on yourself, just don’t let anyone else do it.