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Are you someone who can’t stop working every hour of the day, driven by a compulsion to succeed and a fear of what will happen if you take your foot off the gas? Do you feel the need to be in control of every aspect of your business, to be the guiding light and last word on everything that takes place and every decision that is made? Do your kids ever ask you if you can come to this year’s school play, or read them a bedtime story tonight, knowing that your answer will probably be that you’ll see what you can do, which means something will crop up at work and you’ll have to let them down again? If any of those statements above sound familiar, it might be because your business is running your life and stopping you from reaping the rewards of your success.

Driven by the work ethic

When you first set up in business, you are likely to be working very long hours and devoting most of your energy to establishing your company. As the business grows, you find new challenges to deal with that take up even more of your time, and before you know it the kids have become teenagers, and you’ve missed their childhood. People driven by such a strong work ethic are usually those who find it hard to relinquish any control. They believe, albeit often subconsciously, that no-one can do as good a job as they can and that if they don’t keep up the pace the business will suffer. You could have billions in the bank and not have anything worth showing for it. A big house you only use for sleeping in, a family you hardly ever see, but not the quality of life your wealth would allow you.

How to break free

Once you’ve realized that life is passing you by while you work on making more money that you won’t see the benefit of, the first step is to ease back and take stock of your life. This isn’t a “change everything” moment, where you go cold turkey and start spending all your time at home. It’s about getting the balance right between your leisure time and work and making the decision to delegate. If you are worried about financial security, look at what you have available to invest. A good financial advisor will be able to offer you a range of options on how to invest your money wisely to secure it for the longer term, and take advantage of such things as capital gains tax deferment on 1031 exchange property investments. They will also be able to help you make sure your personal wealth is not tied to the business, so if anything should go wrong, you aren’t in danger of losing everything. Having faith in your staff is the next step so that you can feel confident in delegating. Make sure you are happy that you have the right people in the right positions and that they have all the training, support, and knowledge they need.

Once you have your team in place and your financial affairs sorted, you can continue your role as head of the business without sacrificing your personal happiness. If you make an effort to attain the optimum balance between work and home, you’ll soon start reaping the rewards in improved health and quality of life.

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