Our mental health is as important as our physical health. However, it is often the one that we avoid acknowledging. As entrepreneurs, society is structured in such a way that we are made to believe that we must look like we have it all together in order to be successful.
Everywhere we turn on social media we feel the pressures of doing things ‘right’ and only seem to see the highlight reel of other’s lives. This idea of perfection is a myth that can catch us in a trap of feeling inadequate, unsuccessful, and not enough in our business ventures. Here are a few ways to keep your mental health in check:
Plan self care to recharge your energy
Eleanor Brown stated, “Self care is not selfish. You cannot serve from an empty vessel.”
If we are not making time for self care, we are actually doing a disservice to our clients. In order for us to show up as our best selves when we work with clients, it is essential that we set aside some “me time.”
Spending time practicing self care can be as little as 30 minutes each week doing something that fills your emotional cup, for example, journaling, doing a creative activity, going for a walk or hike, visiting with a friend, or another non-business activity that brings you joy. There are many pressures to be working endless hours, but this should not come at the expense of burning out or feeling less than. Scheduling time for yourself will give you a chance to recharge so you are better able to show up for your clients with authentic energy.
Find a best fit community
It’s in our nature to want to feel connected to others. Finding groups and communities to join where you feel like you belong is important in finding these genuine connections. It’s in these kinds of groups that we find a home of support while running our businesses.
Many times, as business owners, we find ourselves joining groups that we think are the right ones to join or because we see everyone else doing it, but it may not feel like a good fit. Even though these can be great ways to learn new skills and make connections, it’s important not to lose track of who you are. It is essential to find people who align with your values. They’ll quickly become your business family and source of connections.
Why branch out to find community?
When the community feels like a good fit, there is not so much pressure in trying to be someone that you are not – hello, comparison and imposter syndrome. When we feel supported within a community of people that we can relate to, we are more willing to open up, be vulnerable, and learn new things that can help us to grow.
Finding your best fit community can also help foster the confidence needed to stay motivated and the support and encouragement to not feel lonely in your business journey.
Know you are not alone
Social media is an effective way to reach your audience, and there are positive and negative effects it can have on our mental well-being.
We are able to find others like us, be a part of something bigger than ourselves, and find inspiration and motivation. It can also lead us into comparison, doubting our skills and knowledge, and feeling like we just plain aren’t good enough. We might begin to wonder, “how do these people have it all together?”
However, if we were to put a group of entrepreneurs in a room, without a doubt, the struggles are similar. We simply don’t talk enough about them for our feelings to seem normal.
To help combat feeling lonely, speak up about challenges. Even a small mention can actually help create connections with others. Life and business are not perfect, and when we can be vulnerable in our struggles, there are others out there feeling the same.
Where can you start?
Start by sharing a not-so-perfect moment in an Instagram story, or ask others if they have had a similar experience as you. These small confessions will help us feel more connected to each other and help to keep the lonely emotions from creeping in.
By opening up, we also begin to break through the pressures of having to be ‘perfect’ all the time (which doesn’t exist anyways). Being conscious of your mental health and how you care for yourself will contribute to breaking the stigma on mental health and help each other realize that we are more alike than different in feelings that are involved in owning a business.
Want to learn more about how to incorporate self care routines into your daily life and thrive in your business as a result? Get our Ultimate Guide to Self Care here.