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Being an entrepreneur can be exciting, passion-driven, financially rewarding, and personally fulfilling. It can also be stressful and emotionally draining, as each day presents many obstacles to navigate. Without a strong focus on health and wellness, an entrepreneur’s vision can be skewed, making their goals harder to achieve. Entrepreneurs deal with a higher stress load than most people and can quickly become overwhelmed.
Whether you’re running a brick-and-mortar store, servicing a steady stream of customers, or hosting a popular podcast, prioritizing self-care can be a big part of navigating business waters to success.
Entrepreneurs can often prioritize burning the candle at both ends over taking care of themselves. Doing one thing for your self-care can help you increase productivity in the long run and help you feel more satisfied with your chosen career. Here are some good self-care habits to develop as you run your empire.
Related: 8 Self-Care Tips From Wildly Successful Entrepreneurs
1. Nourish your body with good fuel
Having the energy and stamina to run a business starts with fueling your body with healthy food, rest, and exercise. Self-employed people often stay up late and burn the midnight oil to make their dreams come true. This propensity to overwork can lead to eating whatever is available and choosing foods that don’t nourish your body. Even if you’re not ready to give up late nights and long hours, focusing on a balanced diet will make all the difference. A solution to this may be a meal delivery service that splits the ingredients for multiple meals, or a service that allows you to heat and eat. Hydrating your body is just as important, so keep a pitcher of water on your desk!
Related: 10 Simple Ways to Eat Healthy Without Thinking
2. Make sleep a priority
As we mentioned, entrepreneurs are famous for preceding sleep in favor of brainstorming and building businesses. Having a consistent bedtime and sleep schedule will ultimately increase productivity, allow more headroom for creativity, and benefit overall health. The CDC has said that 1 in 3 adults does not get enough sleep each night. The average adult should make 7 hours of sleep a night a common goal. Resting seems like the obvious thing to do, but many entrepreneurs just can’t unplug. The “just one more email” or “rush mode” mentality can often mean that rest is compromised. Once you develop a regular sleep cycle, you also know how much sleep you need. Resting is not difficult at all, it is giving ourselves permission to rest that is difficult.
Related: To really shine at work, how much sleep is required?
3. Set firm trading limits
When building your business, it may be tempting to take calls at all hours of the day, respond to emails immediately, and always be available, especially to your clients and your team. However, having no limits can mean disrupted sleep patterns, fatigue, and poor nutrition choices. And the next thing you know, exhaustion is knocking on your door.
There is a belief among those who are not entrepreneurs that you make your own rules in business and can do what you want, set your own time and freedom. While there is some truth to that statement, companies and entrepreneurs build these businesses to meet the needs of their customers or solve problems. Communicating your established work hours to clients and that you are “available for calls” is an essential pillar of your success. One tip that I have found helpful is to put my response times in my email signature.
Related: How to Set Boundaries While Working Remotely
4. Take regular breaks
You may have noticed a theme with these self-care tips: It’s a simple fact that entrepreneurs tend to overwork. Even if you have to force yourself away from work, make it a priority to take small breaks whenever possible, even if it’s just to sit outside and enjoy a nice day. The pattern interrupting you from being in front of a screen, thinking about a process, solving a problem, or spending energy on a call is a recharge.
5. Outsource tasks
A big part of self-care is knowing when to say “no” and knowing what work is best to delegate to others. We may have a set way of wanting to do things and expectations of how things should be. But the more you allow yourself to reflect on your area, the more you can contribute.
What is self-care today?
The definition of self-care is constantly changing. At one point, he conjured up visions of cucumbers on the eyes and bubble baths. Today, however, self-care can include any action that helps a person refocus, rest, and recharge. Activities like yoga, meditation, athletics, art activities, and even free time with friends could all fall under the self-care banner.
Self-care has been a buzzword recently, but that doesn’t detract from its importance, especially for entrepreneurs. Building and scaling a business is a formidable challenge. Those who are well-rested, well-nourished, and focused on the importance of wellness are well-prepared to meet that challenge head-on.
Related: Can Creative Breaks Boost Your Employee Productivity?