This post has been updated from an original post on 4/4/14
The stress of owning and running your own business has been compared to raising kids or being involved in a rocky romantic relationship. You never know what’s up ahead on the roller coaster. Most of you are small business owners with a passion to succeed, but how do you avoid the occasional resale business owner blues? From unforeseen natural disasters to the day-to-day grind of owning your own business, depression is real. Learn a few tricks of the trade to avoid or at least re-direct those inevitable blues.
A lot of business owners say, “I’m just not good at delegating.” Well then, plan to be overly stressed. The failure to delegate means you either lack confidence in your employees or you have an over-inflated image of yourself. Delegation needs to begin now. If you wait until your stress level is at its highest, you won’t have time. You also need to build a strong support network. Don’t be afraid to connect with other resale shops in your area. Read Do not be terrified of the dreaded Consignment Competition. Join your local Small Business Association and/or Chamber of Commerce. Become a member of the National Association of Resale and Thrift Shops (NARTS). Make this your mantra, “A problem shared is a problem halved.” It’s essential you have a group of people or at least an individual to share your burdens with.
Stress doesn’t just affect you mentally. It affects you physically as well. Often, a business owner doesn’t eat or sleep well. These things also trigger depression. If you find yourself in a place of despair, take a step back. Re-evaluate your overall situation. Something as simple as taking a walk around the block can completely change your perspective. Research shows that taking a break in the middle of the day is an important activity for not only restoring energy but creativity too. A 2014 U.S News & World Report article provided several tips for relieving stress in a minute or less. Ideas ranged from physically stretching or jumping to meditation. According to society, an entrepreneur is supposed to look like they “have it all together.” They don’t have the freedom to admit fear. Don’t be fooled. Every resale business owner has struggled. You are not alone. Set aside the time you need for yourself.
Writing down your thoughts, or keeping a personal journal is another great stress reducer. To help manage your time and feel a sense of accomplishment, keep a list of weekly goals or tasks. If you need to start out simply, set a goal a day. Once you’ve completed the task, be sure to scratch it off your list. That simple act can work wonders for your sense of well being. Lifehack lists a number of benefits to writing things down. Among them, freeing up your mind to concentrate on more important issues. If you need some free printable planning guides, look to Pinterest.
In addition to financial responsibilities, a resale business owner manages employees, customers, consignors, vendors/dealers, your physical shop location, inventory and so forth. It’s the shop owner who puts in longer hours when something goes wrong. The isolation you often feel can be very real when you’re the only one filling in the gaps. Unfortunately, business life, as in personal life, continues to throw curve balls daily. The line between business and personal time becomes blurred. Take the time to acknowledge the reality of resale business owner blues and start making some changes before the 4th quarter crazies hit.