Self-Care Tips for the Busy Entrepreneur
For the last few weeks I’ve felt overwhelmed, yet I’ve been afraid to event complain. I’m having the best year of my life; constant win after win in my new business, who wants to hear how tired I am of success? You’d think I’d be flying high. I’ve been exhausted, overworked, depressed and angry however. I’ve been too tired to even enjoy all the amazing things happening for me.
The more I talk to other solopreneurs and entrepreneurs I’m discovering I’m far from alone. Many of us are experiencing a similar sense of burnout. I used to think burnout was only for those who were working themselves to death trying to save a failing business. Now I know that the same burnout can come from success.
We’re all different, each of us have a different path and speed. Though people say things such as “we all have the same 24 hours in a day”, that isn’t true. We all live our 24 hours with a different set of circumstances.
Myself for example, am legally disabled; at times, I move like I’m not. I find myself constantly moving, intent on helping more people, attending more events, saying yes to more projects. Before I even realize it, I’m burn out, passed out and suffering from over activity.
Being so exhausted has caused Me to miss some of the very events I was intent on attending because I wore myself out at one that was unnecessary, I’ve missed deadlines and my dating life is non-existent. What I finally had to admit to myself is that it’s time to get back to the self-care basics that once sustained me.
After talking to a few of my entrepreneur friends, I realized they could help them as well. If you’ve experienced a similar burnout, I hope they can help you.
Set a morning and evening routine.
It can’t be underestimated the importance of scheduling a morning and evening routine. Not only does a morning routine set your day up for success, but it allows you to start your day peacefully, unrushed and with purpose. Before you give the world your energy, take some time for self-care such as journaling, exercising, eating a healthy breakfast, meditation or even partaking in your favorite hobby.
End your day with a similar routine that includes wind down time away from your phone and other electronic devices. The evening is a perfect time to create your to-do list for the following day. Decide a bed time, getting adequate sleep can be life changing. Even if you don’t fall asleep, get in bed and read.
Do yoga or start meditating
I suggest either yoga or meditation because both have similar breathing techniques. While yoga is more focused on stretching and releasing the tension in your body, meditation is for releasing the tension in your mind. When we meditate, we give ourselves time to block out all the negativity, the business and responsibility to focus on peace, your purpose or nothing, if you should choose to be blank. Yoga is a series of physical movements that can release stress, tension and pent up emotions. Give yourself the gift of release.
Take a vacation
Yes, I’m serious. I know how much work and responsibility you have; You’re burnt out because you have so much to do and here I am telling you to take a break. As my business grew, I felt it was getting too big for me to take a break. How could I disappoint my fans and clients by being unavailable? It wasn’t until I went on a trip to Chicago last month that I realized just how bad I needed a break. I went out of town to hang out and have fun, what I ended up doing was sleeping instead. Each day, I tried to go out and have fun, but I found that I had so little energy. For four days, I spent most of the day resting, too exhausted to make it out even once at night.
The vacation turned out to be exactly what I needed, not only did I get time to rest, but I had time to evaluate how I was living too fast. My vacation taught me that I was working too hard to even enjoy the benefits of my hard work.
When I came home I vowed to slow down and rest and I did. I also hired an assistant so I would no longer have to run myself ragged. I may not have had the energy in Chicago, but the next time I go on vacation I won’t be leaving home too burnt out to enjoy it. Lesson learned.
Learn to say no
How many times have you found yourself sitting at an event wondering how you ended up there when you wanted to be in bed sleep? I have. Being an entrepreneur is hard, there’s a thin line between networking and socializing. I know what it’s like to want to support the brands/ people that support you, but there are only 24 hours in a day. We can’t attend every event, buy every new product our friends launch, or say yes to every favor asked of us.
You must reclaim your time and energy, cutting off energy vampires who drain you with their constant demand of advice, support and participation in the minutiae of their lives. You know who these people in your life are, don’t let your loyalty become the noose around your neck. Just say no.