© 2011 jen

The Maven Circle

The fantasy of working for yourself is much different than the reality.  When most people start a business it looks something like that of someone who’s newly in love.   You believe that anything is possible and see all that you can gain from it or give to it and then (bum, bum, bum) you realize that it’s much harder than it seemed from the outside.  There are many challenging components to starting a business, like trying to do everything yourself, working long hours, trying to find the time to do your work after working a day job, taking care of children or fill in the blank.  Some of the biggest challenges that you will ever face in being a small business person is managing your own feelings about the business and staying motivated with your business endeavors when things get hard.

So little is free in this world and I am someone who has always had to do a lot just to get by.   Fortunately, I’m a high-energy, positive thinker, who loves to solve a problem, so I’ve taken this obstacle in stride.  In college I worked two jobs and went to school.  After college I had my son and was working full time as a social worker and even when I wasn’t working I was on-call with a pager.  Years later while my son was still a little guy and after I started my second small business, I realized that although I had a number of time and stress strategies that I was going to need more to stay on top of everything.  The funny thing is that the more I began to learn about: stress reduction, streamlining your workplace and increasing happiness the more I realized that I had a real love for the tools and techniques I use to manage my work.  I have many friends and colleagues that I’ve shared my tips and techniques with and many more that call me when they need to chew on a problem.  Even in thinking of blog posts that I’ve written, I’ve had the most consistent feedback when giving tips for living a great life.     I must confess that I have a degree in Sociology and Psychology so my interest in people and the mind is a life long interest, I’ve just focused it a bit more over the years around life/work balance.  Then it occurred to me,

Maybe the tools I’m using to manage my own life and my small business, is really my business.  People seem to want to know more practical tools for life/work balance and I have such a passion for sharing this knowledge!

I have been a creative business person for about 10 years now and although I am a fairly organized person it has taken me YEARS of educating myself to come up with systems that help me manage my life, my work and my family more effectively.  I cannot tell you the number of creative people I meet who have a great idea, or even a great business, but who struggle to get where they want to go.  From Busy to Balanced  is the first e-course that Jena and I are offering through The Maven Circle.  The course is designed to help you regroup and look at your life to see where you can streamline or make improvements to better suit your needs and get a leg up both personally and professionally.  It’s not about one technique working for everyone, every person has different needs and so does every business.

Students of this course will get the opportunity to take a fresh look at their lives with exercises and support to develop your working style into what you want it to be rather than what you’ve done in the past to find a more balanced and more fulfilled existence.  It’s ideal for anyone who works from home as there are many challenging aspects to working and living in the same space, which can equal knots in the shoulders, overwhelm starting when you wake up in the morning and other signs of stress.  Yuck!  That’s no fun, but this course will be.  Whether you need to refresh your style as a seasoned creative, business person or whether you are just starting out in business and want to develop healthy work habits.  This course is also a great fit for creative stay at home moms, who are ready to start experiencing more balance in their daily lives.

Jena and I will be doing bi-monthly collaborative posts on different subjects related to life/work balance.  Here’s Jena’s post about The Maven Circle.   Tomorrow’s post is about our morning routines.  If you’d like more info about The Maven Circle sign up for our newsletter!  You can also follow us on Facebook and Twitter.