How to Maintain Work-Life Balance in Your Shop:
4 Tips to Consider
Don’t get us wrong, we love the #hustle—and honestly, when it comes to running a barbershop, you kind of have to love the hustle life, too (mostly because there’s no time or space to not hustle).
But that doesn’t mean we don’t absolutely, 100%, without a doubt believe in a healthy work-life balance.
Listen, if you’re not taking time for yourself and trying to give your personal life and your work life equal attention, you’re setting yourself up for failure.
Either you’ll work so hard you’ll burn out and won’t feel that passion for barbering that you once did or you’ll neglect work way too much and miss out on huge opportunities, growing your business, and becoming the badass barber you always wanted to.
Talking about work-life balance is easy—actually doing it, well, that’s another thing entirely. And hey, we get it, it’s tough! It’s hard to put down the shears for a day, put someone else in charge, or take a weekend off. But if you want to truly love your career, enjoy your life to the fullest, and reap the rewards of your career, it’s something you’ve got to figure out.
So, how exactly do you do that?
There are so many different strategies you can take to try to improve your work-life balance. And honestly, everyone is going to find a unique tip or trick that helps them with that process (we’re all different when it comes to what works for us), but we’ve included just a few of our fave tips to get you started.
If you’re just now starting your work-life balance journey in (and out) of the barbershop, then this blog is for you—get to reading!
Stop Skipping Self Care
Here’s something super important that we can’t let you ignore anymore—self-care.
And we’re not just talkin’ about bubble baths and facial masks and getting a massage—yeah, that kind of counts, but we’re talking about the deep, important, vital things you need to do as a person to ensure that you’re mentally and physically healthy.
Self-care is making a regular appointment with your therapist. Self-care is spending time with your family. Self-care is putting the phone down and picking up a book you love. Self-care is getting a good, solid amount of healthy exercise every day or two. Self-care is examining your goals, evaluating yourself, and putting in work to be the best version of yourself possible.
So yeah, go ahead and step out of the shop and schedule that massage—you deserve it. But schedule time to make sure you’re healthy, happy, and doing what you need to do to live your best life.
Schedule (Literally) Down Time
If you run your career by the book and implement strict scheduling in your daily life to make sure everything’s always taken care of, then this strategy might be perfect for you.
Take out your planner, open your iPhone, do whatever it is that you do to schedule your day, your week, your month, and literally schedule yourself a regular appointment for downtime.
If you’re reading this saying, “downtime? What’s downtime?” then sweetie, it’s high time you learned. Schedule weekly downtime where you don’t do a damn thing that’s associated with work. Want to read? Go for it. Want to binge a TV series? Do it. Want to spend time hiking or swimming or working on a craft? This is what this time is made for!
When you schedule an appointment, you’re making downtime a priority and you’re demanding that you give yourself time to unwind, relax, and step away from the shop.
Create Policies & Set Boundaries
Create policies within your shop that help you and your staff maintain work-life balance. Create policies that center around time-off, cancellations, refunds, commission, scheduling, etc. so that your staff knows what’s what—and so that you can carve out some “me time,” too.
Make easy rules for yourself that you can follow. For example, maybe, on Wednesdays and Thursdays, you have to be out of the shop by 3 pm. Maybe you take one Saturday off every two weeks. Maybe you create a rule that says staff has to take a few mandatory days off a week, too. If it’s part of your policy, you’ll have an easier time following the rules and giving yourself that balance you need.
And lead by example, too. If your shop staff see that you never make time for yourself and that you’re a severe workaholic, they’re going to struggle to set up healthy boundaries, too. Be an advocate for your staff, encourage them to create a healthy balance, and lead by example.
Delegate, Delegate, Delegate
Stop trying to shoulder everything! If you’re a shop owner or manager, this can be exceptionally hard—because, in a way, that shop is your baby (and, in theory, we can’t just like, step away from our babies and say “see ya later, kid, be back in a bit).
But here’s the deal. If you’re hiring the right people, training them, advocating for them, and giving them all the tools and resources they need to run your shop, you shouldn’t have to be in the shop 24/7, doing everything, and praying they can get it right.
Set yourself up so you can have a life. Hire the right people. Train them up to be your dream staff (and treat them that way, too). This way, when the time comes, you can feel fully comfortable stepping away, handing over the responsibility for a day, and relaxing into some free time.
You know what really helps you to remember that you need to maintain work-life balance? Reminding yourself that even though you might totally love running, managing, or working in your barbershop, you weren’t made to just work your life away.
Don’t get us wrong, it really helps to have a kickass job you love—but you weren’t made to work until you die.
Life is for living, and if your career facilitates that, you owe it to yourself to enjoy your life, take time off, and balance your career with the rest of your life!
Have you figured out a few awesome ways to balance your work-life schedule? Let us know! Drop a line in the comments below for your fellow barbering community to give us a real-life look at the balancing act.
For more tips, tricks, advice, and insight, keep up with our regularly updated NAOB blog right here!