If you’ve been a reader for a while, you know I’m heavy on self-care. It’s essential. Self-care is even more important as an entrepreneur. Working for yourself isn’t easy and it can very quickly lead to stress and burnout. Most entrepreneurs I know are constantly dealing with working day and night (and some around nap schedules), time pressures from demanding clients, and the very real concern about where their money is coming from. Making self-care a priority can be an integral part of your success. Self-care means anything that helps you maintain your physical, mental, or emotional health and it can leave you feeling healthy, relaxed, and ready to tackle the challenges in your business.
I’m not a fan of hustle culture because it doesn’t factor in the importance of self-care. It rewards those who are always on the go, never sleep, and don’t have “time to relax”. It’s not healthy! By incorporating a self-care routine as an entrepreneur you can:
Reduce Your Stress Levels
Stress is a normal part of life (and isn’t necessarily unhealthy) but if not managed right, can have big health consequences. Learning how to manage your stress levels is important as an entrepreneur and self-care is one way to relax your body (and mind) and give yourself a break.
Improve clarity and creativity
When you’re less stressed, your mind will be more open for creativity and inspiration to hit! Overwhelm doesn’t allow your mind to have time to process which can lead to creative blocks and feeling stuck.
Taking breaks improves your productivity. Point blank period. Even stepping away for 10 minutes to practice breathing, stretching, mediations or a simple walk can leave you feeling refreshed and ready to crush that work you’ve been putting off.
Improve Mental Health
As a woman of color (or woman of the global majority – my new favorite phrase) my mental health is everything. The psychological, emotional, and physical effects of sustained stress are a huge health factor in Black and Brown communities. We are pre-disposed to conditions like high blood pressure. Taking care of our mental is one way to change the generational outlook for future generations of women like us.
What are some ways to start incorporating self-care into your entrepreneurial journey? Try these 5 tips for taking care of yourself while you take care of business.
Set aside “me time”
Make time in your schedule for you. That can mean meditating, journaling, or scrolling through TikTok! Find moments where you can quiet your mind and really check in with how you’re doing. Whether it’s meditating, journaling or even playing video games, successful entrepreneurs learn to bake some valuable “me time” into their daily schedule. This means finding moments where you can quiet your mind and check in with yourself. For me, that means a quiet cup of coffee in the morning instead of jumping right into work. Find something that works for you.
Learn to say no
Boundaries need to be a thing in your life. Set them. Keep them. When you say no, you’re allowing yourself the time to do things that matter and can often lead to bigger and better things. It can be hard at first, but over time you’ll find it easier to say no to unwanted plans or things that don’t serve your purpose. Also, no is a complete sentence. No explanation is needed.
Nourish Your Body
I’ll admit, this is something I struggle with but when I do, I feel so much better. It’s hard to change old and unhealthy eating habits but we gain so much when we make lifestyle changes to our diet. Not only will better-eating help you physically, but it can help maintain your energy, boost your mood, and help you be more productive.
Find a hobby
Work should never be your whole life. I’ve recently gotten into putting together Harry Potter Lego sets and it’s something that allows my mind to take a much-needed break. Find something you love to do that can help you destress from your work.
Be in the moment
I read an article once that said so many people today experience life through the screen on their phones. Think about a concert you’ve been to (pre-covid) and you’ll immediately see everyone watching the concert through their phones as they record videos instead of actually experiencing the concert. Being mindful of your actual lived moments can help you find gratitude and connect with others on a deeper level which can reduce stress levels.
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