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There are so many self-employed people out there running themselves ragged. In fact, their small business is running them. And trust me, I’ve walked that path myself. Up late at night, going all day long, believing that’s just the way it is for small business owners.

I would invite you to read “the eMyth Revisited” or get the audio book version. It talks about the entrepreneurial myth that takes us down the path of starting a business with passion and excitement only to become disillusioned by the overwhelming responsibility of it all, and ending up wondering why we ever took the path of self-employment.

But it doesn’t have to be that way. You can turn your business (and profits!) around. Here are 4 ideas for doing just that.

Realize "Solo" Entrepreneur is a Myth : Sure, I'm a solo entrepreneur and you may be as well. But it's actually a myth. You simply cannot run a small business all by yourself. Nor can I. So I hire virtual assistants, and I partner with others on projects and joint ventures, etc. I have a mastermind team of entrepreneurs who hold me accountable and who support me when I'm frustrated and down.  

My point is, ditch the idea that you can run a small business by yourself. You can’t. So I’d invite you to list the things you don’t enjoy doing in your business and begin to brainstorm on how you can delegate, outsource, or partner with others to get some help, support, and relief. When you are truly solo, it’s easy to become a slave to your business.

Create Systems to eliminate Overwhelm : Everything you do in your business is a system. A step by step approach to getting a task or project done. But unfortunately, a lot of our "systems" are undocumented and in our heads. For example, I have a system for publishing my weekly Ezine to my list, my blog, article sites, and social media. It wasn't written down. Each time I sat down to do it, I had to re-think the steps and that re-thinking increased the time for getting it done. Sometimes I'd miss a step and had to stop something else I was doing when I remembered - counter-productive.

So I sat down and wrote out all the steps. Not only did it make the process faster, I could also delegate parts or all of it to an assistant because the steps are clear. Think about where you need to systematize. Document the steps to what you‘re doing so you can speed up the process and also easily to delegate to others. When you have no documented systems, it’s easy to become a slave to your business.

Release Your Inner Control Freak & Delegate : Got an inner control freak? I do. It's that little voice in my head that says no-one but me can do certain things in my business - a long list of things. It kills your time and your business. You need to hire people. It's that simple. And it need not be costly. Check out www.elance.com or www.guru.com or www.assistu.com for virtual assistants. I've paid as little as $3 an hour using elance.com to get certain tasks done and all the way up to $45 an hour for very specialized tasks.

The point is the costs you may be imagining may be just your assumptions. Release your inner control freak, take the action to check out how you can begin to outsource to save your sanity and turn your business around. The more you delegate, the more you are able to focus on actions that bring you more clients and more money. When you refuse to delegate, you become a slave to your business.

Turn your knowledge into dollars : If you are self-employed, and particularly in a service-based business, it's time to start trading your knowledge (and not just your time) for dollars. It's called information products. Basically, you take what's in your head and you teach it on audio, video, or in written format, and you sell it. Books, home study courses, eBooks, audio downloads, CDs, etc. are all information products. It also gives you another offering to provide to your customers. Not only that, it positions you as an expert in your field. When you create passive revenue through info products, you create more income without more work, and you free up your time as well.

WANT TO USE THIS ARTICLE IN YOUR E-ZINE OR WEB SITE? You can, as long as you include this complete blurb with it: Allison Babb is an author, speaker and Small Business Coach to solo entrepreneurs. She publishes the “Small Business Success” weekly Ezine on how to create a steady stream of clients for your small business at: www.GreatSmallBusinessAdvice.com



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