Running a business, although rewarding and exciting, is almost alwaysphysically and emotionally demanding. Answering the inevitable flood of emails, attending meetings, and finding new partnerships and opportunities are just a few of the things that tax your time. Of course, there is more to your daily life both inside and outside the office, but if you have a tendency to prioritize work over working on yourself then you are going to find that you will no longer run your business: your business will run you.
If you are predominantly consumed with the operations of your business and hardly tend to your own personal needs, you are underestimating how much your business needs you to be at your best. Neglecting your health, by doing things like consistently substituting energy drinksfor sleep, may give you that productive pick-me-up in the moment, but the ultimate toll it will take on you will flow over into your business eventually.
The bottom line is that your health is your greatest business asset. While it can be scary to take some “me” time when you’re feeling like so much is on the line if you don’t take care of yourself well, eventually you won’t be able to take care of your business either.
If you’ve been putting off “me” time for too long, make an investment in yourself. It’s the best investment you could make in your business.
1. Get into a routine.
Make a commitment to getting up a few minutes earlier to make a decent breakfast or try hitting the gym during lunch. Be determined to not always take your work home with you at the end of the day. While it may be unrealistic for you to be completely “offline”during off hours, set aside time to spend with family or to care for your personal needs when you get home. You can always establish set working hours in the evening if you know there’s work you must get done from home. While setting new boundaries can be challenging at first, most will respect your boundaries if you respect them yourself.
Utilizing a day planner can be quite beneficial when trying to organize your time. If you have a smartphone or a tablet, there are apps galore that can help keep you organized with timers, alarms and more. Some people simply react better to a device that can remind them of when certain activities need to be enacted.
2. Get to bed on time.
Instead of staying up late to get extra work done, go to bed and get up earlier to complete the tasks. You will be more refreshed and energized leaving you able to work more efficiently. If you find that you’re constantly letting your work drift into the later hours, you may want to reassess how you budget your time throughout the day. Could there be a time-consuming task that you could outsource? Are you not being as productive as you could? Whatever the case may be, you would be a bit more efficient with consistent rest.
Sometimes our bodies are simply not ready to sleep during the waning hours of the night. Many of us could be laying there looking at the clock realizing that they have to be at work in four hours. How can you help yourself get a good night’s rest?
- Exercising before bed. Working out prior to bedtime can help you exhaust pent up energy that may keep you awake.
- Chamomile tea. More than just a home remedy, chamomile itself is known to relax the body.
- Reduce caffeine intake. Don’t drink caffeinated drinks within five hours of bed time.
- The right temperature. Yes, even the temperature of your room can make a difference in how well you sleep. It’s all about being comfortable.
3. Get moving
Instead of sitting all day at your desk and skipping breaks, try standing up and walking or pacing while you make business calls. You may even want to consider using a balance ball instead of a chair for periods throughout the day. Give yourself five to ten minutes every two hours to get some water or a snack. Hydration helps your brain and body function more smoothly and snacking keeps you from binge eating at dinner. During breaks, walk around the establishment to get the blood flowing. If you are near a location for lunch, walk instead of drive. Any kind of physical activity during your work day can be greatly beneficial especially if you are desk-bound.
When you begin to feel stress, take immediate steps to de-stress.Steadying your core, lean your upper body from side to side to keep your spine flexible and agile. Roll your neck, close your eyes, breathe deeply, and massage your shoulders to relieve the strain from sitting at a desk for long hours. Count backwards from ten or visualize a relaxing place a few times throughout the day to let go of pent up stress.
5. Do some morning meditation.
Instead of jumping right into work moments after waking up, drink a full glass of water, stretch, and meditate for at least five minutes. There are a variety of mediation techniques that you could tap into. You may find that it’s helpful to focus on your breath and clear your mind; or perhaps controlled breathing with prayer and self-reflection will be your style. Find what works best for you. Meditation will do wonders for your mind, and a healthy mind will do wonders for your workflow.
Your health should be your biggest priority because when you are at your best you also work your best. Remember that your business needs and when you live like it does success will begin to unfold more naturally in every aspect of your life.
Ken Myers is a father, husband, and entrepreneur. He has combined his passion for helping families find in-home care with his experience to build a business. Learn more about him by visiting @KenneyMyers on Twitter.
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