There is a lot of hustle involved in being an entrepreneur, especially when you are first starting out. As a business owner who is also an introvert the building, endless social media interaction and connecting with new clients is exhausting at times. This is not to say I am not grateful or don’t love every single person I connect with. I am ecstatic that I have built a successful business and it’s mine. I am my own boss and that feels really great. But I am also an introvert and the constant interaction does tire me. So what does an introvert do when they get tired and everything starts to feel overwhelming?
1) Make one connection at a time. There are business owners who can gather large groups and create a fandom around them in no time. I am in awe of these people, but I also know that would be hard for me to manage right out the gate. I thrive off connecting with people on a one-on-one level. That is my strength and if you are an introvert it’s probably your strength, too. So when you are trying to connect with clients or grow your social media following know that you only have to do it one person at a time. It makes the mountain look a lot smaller and helps to avoid being overwhelmed.
2) Make set times in your schedule when you interact with clients and followers. I know that interacting with people tires me out. That’s why I have set times during the day when I reply to emails and interact with people on social media. Some days I have a lot of energy and will extend past my set times, but mostly I try to stick to this schedule. Every morning, I have my coffee, go through my email and check my social media. I respond to emails and comments, as well as interact with my followers. I set a timer and get it done. I also limit my consults and meetings with clients to certain days of the week. I have set days where I don’t have to talk to anyone on the phone and days where I do. This gives me the opportunity to recuperate and give my clients my best on certain days.
3) Create a tier of offerings that have different levels of interaction. This is important to avoid burnout and have an online business that you love. Social media and “the hustle” can get out of hand quickly. Know your strengths and create offerings that play on them.
For instance: I am really good at connecting with small groups of people and ensuring that my clients get individual attention from me. So I have created a tier of offerings based around this. I offer social media management, one-on-one consultations, and ever green offerings. As an introvert, creating offerings that are ever green like an online course or an ebook are gold. You build it, market it and then it sells. You don’t necessarily have to interact with everyone that buys it and you still have that income.
4) Pick the right social media platforms for YOUR business. Many of my introvert consult clients have expressed that they are overwhelmed by Twitter. I tell them that if they are overwhelmed by Twitter, they don't have to be on it. For me, I have a Twitter account but I don't spend a lot of time on it. Instagram and Pinterest are my bread and butter. I get to express my creativity on Instagram and connect with people one-on-one. The community on Instagram is so wonderful in this respect. Pinterest has become my next go-to platform. I respond to comments and leave the occasional comment on pins, but for the most part the interaction isn’t very present. You are connecting with people through content not conversation, making this platform great for introverts.
5) Find support! I am in a group for entrepreneurs and I also surround myself with like-minded entrepreneurs who have similar struggles and have learned how to keep going and move forward despite those struggles. I also have a coach who I can rely on to help me when I am feeling overwhelmed or unsure about a business decision.
Side note: Feeling overwhelmed or unsure is normal and every entrepreneur goes through it.
6) Take a break.
We all need to take a break sometimes. For an introvert, being busy all of the time isn’t necessarily a good thing. Whether you’re doing yoga every day, sitting quietly or unplugging for four days a month, you need a break to recharge. Taking breaks are essential to avoiding burnout and putting your best foot forward when you are doing your work.
7) Remember that you are the boss of you and your business. If you feel overwhelmed, it’s okay to shift your focus as needed. It’s okay to put your energy to building a new product or offering instead of spending all of your energy on interacting with new people for awhile.