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Is it possible to spend less time feeling guilty?

March 25, 2018

Aruku: say no without feeling guilty thumbnail

Aruku: say no without feeling guilty

As a woman juggling a full-time job, starting my own business, being an adequate wife, pregnancy and a busy social life I spend a lot of time feeling guilty.

There’s the ‘reasonable’ guilt. Could I have done a better job at that presentation, should I have worked later to make that pitch better, have I remembered my friend’s birthday (usually) and what about their three kid’s birthdays (rarely). And then there’s the entirely irrational guilt. Should I be eating that many doughnuts when pregnant, is it ok to spend 50p more on the posh yoghurt and should I be thinking about food for this much of the day!

I’m aware I’m not the only one succumbing to endless feelings of guilt. Blogging has opened up a world of guilty mothers. But less of guilty entrepreneurs. When you’re putting your heart and soul into nurturing and protecting a fragile start-up it puts a lot of pressure on your already stretched resources. And since starting a business isn’t something you can (successfully) do half-heartedly it has to become one of your priorities. And that will probably make you feel guilty too!

So how do you manage the guilt?

Well as you’re probably aware if you’ve been following our story from the beginning, this blog is more of a journey than a source of answers. But so far, I’ve found two remedies that go a little way to easing the mental stress. Firstly, as an avid ‘to do’ list writer, I’ve re-jigged my list writing condensing all my personal & work jobs in one list and then prioritising. This ensures I balance my work and personal jobs better, as opposed to over-delivering on the list I happen to read first.

And secondly, I’ve learnt to file my guilt (what can I say I make lists and I file emotions). Instead of dwelling on what’s making me feel guilty, I make a rational decision to evaluate why I feel guilty, could I have done anything differently without it having a detrimental effect on another part of my life and if not then it doesn’t make the guilt file. If I feel there’s a better solution I identify it and file it under G as a learning for next time.

So, do I still feel guilty when I take a day off and let my vulnerable business fend for itself for a day. Absolutely. But do I sometimes need a break and should I cut myself some slack. 100%.


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