I was the worst at self-care. I know that sounds ironic coming from someone who teaches “take care of you first”.
I did all the proper talking on the outside but didn’t really walk the walk. I was one of them “strong” and “independent” women. I must be doing something every second of the day, or I’m not feeling productive.
I would wake up early and stay up late. I rewarded myself with more projects.
Soon, my life was out of control and I crashed…hard.
I wasn’t practicing self-care.
Now, I schedule self-care into my busy schedule to make sure every part of me is whole… body, mind, and soul.
And that’s why I wrote this article, to remind us that busy entrepreneurs and small business owners need to practice self-care too.
What is Self Care?
Self-Care is purposeful and holistic maintenance of one’s self.
Why is self care for busy wellness entrepreneurs important?
We are known for putting our business and clients first, then ourselves last.
Being a busy spiritual entrepreneur can be stressful, energy draining and lonely at times.
This can lead to physical and mental health issues. You got work to do, so we need to keep you healthy and whole.
Here are my ABC’s of self care for Entrepreneurs And Small Businesses Owners.
Try to incorporate a few of them in your lifestyle. Your body, team, and clients will thank you for it. Mine did.
“An important part of any focusing regimen is to set aside time at the end of the day – just before going to sleep – to acknowledge your successes, review your goals, focus on your successful future, and make specific plans for what you want to accomplish the next day.” – Jack Canfield
Have you sat down and thought about how far you have come? Spend a few moments replaying your wins, clients who complimented you, or the people who love you. Even on the days where everything seemed to go wrong, you can find something good that makes you smile. Try going to bed knowing that you are a ROCKSTAR.
“When you own your breath, nobody can steal your peace.” – Author Unknown
There are days where you barely have time to refill your coffee or grab a bite to eat. Take 30 seconds and just breathe. Breathe in for 3 seconds, hold for 3 seconds and exhale for 3 seconds. This allows your body to calm down and your mind to refocus so you can get things done. Self care for busy entrepreneurs doesn’t have to be complex.
“We would do ourselves a tremendous favor by letting go of the people who poison our spirit.” – Author unknown
There are times when it is necessary to end relationships with friends and clients. They have tried to control you, crossed boundaries and take from you until you are drained. Take the necessary steps to distance yourselves from them in order to keep your sanity.
“It’s not how much we give but how much love we put into giving.”– Mother Teresa
It feels good to give. I’m not talking about lending your friend five dollars, but donating to a worthy cause or organization. We love being a part of the solution to a problem that’s bigger than ourselves. If you are just starting our or your money is tied up, you can always donate your time and services. VolenteerMatch.org has over 100,000 opportunities from over 100,000 organizations looking for your skills and talents. You can volunteer as little as you want and most of the time, virtually.
“Managing your emotions doesn’t mean you don’t express yourself; it means you stop short of hurting others and sabotaging yourself.” – Sue Fitzmaurice
There will be days where nothing is going your way. You dropped the ball, a client yells at you, and you get stopped at every red light. It’s ok to feel emotions like anger, hurt, disappointment and fear. It’s also ok to express how you feel to others. Use “I feel…” phrases to get it all out, so you can move on.
“A friend is someone who gives you total freedom to be yourself”.– Jim Morrison
Do you remember those people you hung out with before you became “Super CEO”? Return their call, go to the cookout with them, or meet them drinks. They know all your secrets, think you’re weird and love you anyways. Spend some time with them and be free.
“Gratitude is the healthiest of all human emotions. The more you express gratitude for what you have, the more likely you will have even more to express gratitude for.” – Zig Ziglar
A gratitude book is a journal, notebook or digital folder filled with all the wonderful things you are grateful for. Begin by writing down 3-5 things each day. It can be as simple as one word or a series of sentences. Keep it at your desk and look at it when you are feeling blue. It will lift your spirit and help you remember how good you have it.
“Healing is to remind us we are not the experiences of the world.”– Robert Holden
Healing takes time. It is a slow process, but necessary for you to recover from past hurts, brokenness or trauma. There are many different paths to begin a healing journey. Find one that you are comfortable with. When things become uncomfortable, reach out to a friend, a support group or professional for additional help. You can mend the broken pieces back together again. It’s why self care for busy entrepreneurs is so important.
“If you cannot find peace within yourself, you will never find it anywhere else.” – Marvin Gaye
Inner peace is being in total control of you and the way you behave to situations around you. There can be complete chaos all around you, but you know that you are well equipped to handle everything necessary for that moment. When you have inner peace, you can show others and create a peaceful environment around you.
“Every secret of a writer’s soul, every experience of his life, every quality of his mind, is written large in his works.” – Virginia Woolf
Writing in a journal daily or weekly does wonders for your mental health. It’s your private place where you can address your thoughts, emotions, fears and doubts. Once it is out of your head, you can leave it there so you don’t carry it with you.
“Karaoke bars combine two of the nation’s greatest evils: people who shouldn’t drink with people who shouldn’t sing.”– Tom Dreesen
Did you know that singing is a natural anti-depressant and lowers stress levels? Don’t believe me? Try belting out the lyrics to your favorite song. How do you feel better? Now mix that with friends and a couple of beers for one worry-free night.
“A good laugh and a long sleep are the two best cures for anything.”– Irish Proverb
I don’t want to sound like a broken, but laughter is the best medicine. Need to laugh, but not really feeling it? Stand in the mirror and watch yourself fake laughing. Eventually, that will turn into real laughter because you look ridiculous. You can also watch something funny, or talk to a really good friend.
“The thing about meditation is that you become more and more YOU.” – David Lynch
Meditation isn’t about quieting your mind, but about being aware of your thoughts, emotions, and sensations. Listening to guided meditations is an easy way to get started. Begin with one minute and slowly work your way up to 10-15 minutes. You don’t have to meditate for hours to experience the benefits.
“I go to nature to be soothed and healed, and to have my senses put in order.” – John Burroughs
Want to feel better? Go spend some time outdoors. Nature offers one of the most reliable boosts to your mental and physical well-being. Take a short walk in the sun, jog through the park before you begin your day, or spend a moment on your balcony. Take your shoes off and feel the grass between your toes for an energetic boost.
“Opportunity often comes in disguised in the form of misfortune, or temporary defeat.” -Napoleon Hill
You have a decision to make. You can either see your situation as a struggle, or as an opportunity. Ask yourself: What can I do differently next time? Who can I ask for help? How can I use this to help someone else?
“Get rid of clutter and you may just find that it was blocking the door you’ve been looking for.” – Katrina Mayer
Have you ever watched the show “Hoarders?” Each homeowner has an unhealthy attachment to stuff. I’m not calling you a hoarder, but I’m sure there are some physical items, mental baggage or relationships you need to get rid of. Remember, if you do not use it or if it no longer brings you joy, then it is time to purge it.
“Silence can give you all the answers that you need to hear.” – Author Unknown
We are connected to everyone and everything all the time. Solitude allows you to reboot your brain and unwind. Try waking up 20 minutes earlier and just be.
“Whenever you read a good book, somewhere in the world a door opens to allow in more light.” –Vera Nazarian
Getting lost in a book is one of the easiest ways to relax. Allow the book to transport you anywhere at any moment. With the Kindle app, millions of books are right at your fingertips.
“People who describe things as ‘better than sex’ are having the wrong kind of sex.”- Author Unknown
Feeling burned out and stressed out? Sex is the cure. Like exercise, sex causes your brain to release those feel good chemicals and put a smile on your face. Don’t forget to cuddle to increase all the feels.
“Twenty years from now, you will be more disappointed by the things you didn’t do than by the ones you did do.” – Mark Twain
A change of location can give you a different view of yourself, your problems and the world. Try not to plan something for every moment you are away, or you will need a vacation from your vacation. Turn off your phone and immerse yourself into your surroundings.
“To whatever degree you listen and follow your intuition, you become a creative channel for the higher power of the universe.”– Shakti Gawain
Many people believe that there is a power greater than us. They find peace knowing there is someone that they can turn to for answers, guidance, and love. I encourage you to spend time connecting spiritually with your higher power.
“I have learned now that while those who speak about one’s miseries usually hurt, those who keep silence hurt more.” – C.S. Lewis
We deal with things that annoy, and frustrate us every day. Most of us keep these bottled up inside until we explode on someone who didn’t deserve it. That’s why we need safe places to get it all out and not cause harm to others. Find a trustworthy friend, or join a group where you can talk with others who know exactly what you are going through.
“Pure water is the world’s first and foremost medicine.” – Slovakian Proverb
Water is used to clean and purify both spiritually and physically. Listening to the sounds of natural water can improve your emotional and mental well-being. If you cannot get to a lake or river, having a water fountain can give you the same benefit.
“Power’s not given to you. You have to take it.” – Beyoncé Knowles-Carter
Extraordinary people do things that other people won’t. They inspire and motivate us to be better versions of ourselves. Being an entrepreneur makes you extraordinary. You work hard, solve problems and share your knowledge with others. Don’t ever forget that.
”Yoga is the perfect opportunity to be curious about who you are.” – Jason Crandell
The goal of yoga is to unite the mind, the body and the spirit. When they are aligned, you can relieve tension and feel relaxed. Start with a beginners class in your neighborhood, or Youtube if you would rather stay in.
“If you’re not having fun, it’s your own fault.” – Rich DiGirolamo
I saved the best for last. Turn off your phone. Stop working 80 hours a week. Get out there and enjoy yourself! Don’t miss out on the valuable gift you have called life.
If you enjoyed my A-Z of self care for entrepreneurs and small business owners, please share it with a friend.
This post was previously written for the Peri10k community.