When you’re in business for yourself, it’s easy to feel overwhelmed and anxious. These feelings can lead to a host of issues that can impact your health and happiness, not to mention the success of your business.
Fortunately, there are a number of proven ways to combat this besides throwing in the towel and giving up your dream (as if that were really an option!). Below, I’m sharing my top three tips for overcoming the overwhelm and crushing anxiety.
Implement these tactics one-by-one, and in a few weeks you’ll be thinking, feeling, and operating at a whole new level.
Self Care Tip #1: Move Your Body!
What is simple, inexpensive, and extraordinarily effective at improving your physical and mental health?
Yes, we all know exercise is good for our body, but it’s now proven to be good for our mind, as well. Personally, I’ve always been an active person, but after starting Greetabl, I started stealing time from my workouts to spend more time at work. Pretty soon, exercise was a ‘backburner’ activity that only happened when I ‘had the time.’
Once I realized how foolish this was, I committed to making exercise an everyday priority. And, WOW (!!) has that made all the difference. Sure, I miss a day here or there, but never two in a row.
The trick is to take all of the complexity out of exercising. There are only a handful of things you really need to think about (despite what ‘get fit fast’ ad you might see on Facebook).
● When: Morning, noon, or night? What works best for you?
● Where: Gyms or studios can be a great way to get your movement in, as long as “I don’t have time to get there…” doesn’t become an excuse. You can always go for a walk or do a bodyweight routine at home. Eliminate excuses!
● What: Right now, I do a kettlebell routine nearly every day and mix in a short run or row for a little variety. I try to go for a 15-minute walk in the afternoon (and yes, that counts!). Find the activities you want to do… because those are the ones you will do.
And don’t forget, 10 minutes of movement is infinitely better than zero.
Self Care Tip #2: Tame Your Monkey Mind
You know the hundreds of thoughts that can swirl through your mind seemingly all at once? This is your monkey mind, and it is NOT helping!
As a creative entrepreneur you might be tempted to think this is where your new ideas begin, but I can say from experience that I have more (and better) ideas when I’m focused. A quiet mind can explore depths that the chaos of the monkey mind can’t even see.
So how do you calm your mind? Aside from exercise, which definitely helps, the single most impactful thing I’ve done is begin a meditation practice. Before you roll your eyes–hear me out! I was skeptical, but there’s so much science to support its role in a healthy routine that I gave it a shot, and almost two years later I have not let it go.
There are dozens of apps available (I use Calm) but, like exercise, the real key is to commit to making the time. You have to put in the minutes. I find 10 minutes to be the sweet spot between reaping the rewards and being able to commit to the time in my schedule.
Pro tip: Connect your meditation practice to a specific thing you do every day. For me, when I park at work, I do my 10 minutes…then get on with my day. If it doesn’t happen then, it gets very difficult to work it into my schedule later.
Need to carve out more time for self care?
The trick to finding more time to exercise, meditate and get more sleep is to get organized. Business management tools like Honeybook can help you manage the chaos. Run your business all in one place and automate your admin tasks to minimize stress and maximize your peace of mind. Start free trial.
Self care Tip #3: Go to Sleep!
Even more so than exercise, sleep is where business owners cheat themselves the most in self care. It feels so… indulgent. There’s always more to do, more that can be done. And Netflix is all too happy to keep us up a bit longer after the laptop is closed if we’re so inclined (and it’s designed to do just that).
The reason that it’s so difficult to clearly see the benefit of sleep is that you have to really pay attention–really be self-aware–to note the differences… but they add up in a big way. For instance, I know that when I’m low on sleep I more easily get angry or annoyed, I have a shorter attention span, and I’m more likely to do something truly indulgent like stress eat something salty or sweet.
Add these up and you have a day that’s unpleasant, unproductive, and unhealthy. Those are not the kind of things that lead to happiness… or success!
Give yourself a month of going to bed (without the TV on) in time to get 7-8 hours of sleep and see how you feel. Trust me!
These three tips are truly very simple, but simple does not mean easy. I suggest tackling them one-at-a-time, and reach out and let me know how it’s going!
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.