If you’re like me, you probably started your business with nothing but a dream.
You set out to create a life you love, a dream work schedule, booking clients like a boss, and wearing whatever you want along the way.
But what happens when that fades and business is completely overwhelming?
Like life, entrepreneurship has its ups and downs.
The reality of cash flow struggles, boundary pushing clients, and the stress of figuring it all out as you go catches up with the best of us.
Today, I’m sharing three ways that you can calm down, come back to present, and realign when you feel like you’re drowning in overwhelm as an entrepreneur.
Breath and Embody
When you’re stressed, you’re engaging your sympathetic nervous system – the part of your body that actives our fight/flight/freeze response.
We can’t solve a problem with the same mindset that created it.
When we’re feeling stressed and desperate, we don’t make the best decisions for ourselves or our businesses. Step one for managing overwhelm is to come back to present. There’s no better “hack” to do this than through our bodies.
Take three deep, belly breaths.
I know that it might sound simple. But breathing from our bellies will disengage your sympathetic nervous system (fight or flight) and activate your parasympathetic nervous system (rest and digest).
We can’t heal or rest with an inactive parasympathetic nervous system. After your deep breaths, touch your body and feel your physical presence in the moment. I personally love to place my hands over my heart and tell myself “I am safe” to bring down the armor and open up to receive.
Ask For What You Need
Now that you’ve created space to come back to the present, ask yourself what you need right now. Try to explore this question without judgment and beyond the immediate answer.
I say this because when we’re stressed, we get tunnel vision. We start to think that the only way to get what we need is through one specific modality. But if we open ourselves up beyond the tunnel, we can see all the different ways that we can have our needs met.
If you’re working with a client who constantly pushes boundaries, what do you need in the relationship to be at your best?
- Clear communication of timelines?
- Being able to say no?
- Better channels for communication?
Ask yourself what you need, then actually ask for it – whether that’s of yourself or the other parties involved.
Write Down Three Action Steps
When we’re stressed and overwhelmed, we aren’t in our power. We feel lost and out of control. Where have you given your power away? To the money, boundary pushing clients, social media, your negative beliefs?
You don’t want the panicked desperate version of you to make business decisions. But you DO want the empowered, confident, and clear version to be in charge.
Once you’ve come back into your body and to the present moment, ask the powerful boss inside of you:
“what are three action steps that I can take today that will help move me in my desired direction?”
Start with low energy, high ROI activities.
Follow up on your current leads. Schedule a call with a boundary pushing client to redefine expectations. Choose to take the day off and do three things to play and feel free. This will allow you to clear your head (and heart) and come back fresh tomorrow.
One of my personal favorites is to start with a gratitude list to bring attention to all that I do have now.
As entrepreneurs, part of our job is to manage the unknown and the ups and downs. But with these three simple tips, you’ll always be able to calm down and come back to present when business is completely overwhelming.