If you’re starting a new business, let me get one thing straight: You’re a superhero.
A rock star.
A total BOSS.
Because this stuff is HARD.
Getting a self-started business up and running demands 24 hours a day and an intense devotion.
It’s exhausting and overwelming. Rewarding and motivating. All the good and the bad, all at once.
And it causes everything in your world to shift.
Life can’t carry on as it did before you were an entrepreneur. I learned that first hand in the last year. Everything has to evolve. That’s ok, but it’s important to recognize that change and make the necessary shifts in your day-to-day to accommodate it.
Especially when it comes to your health.
Your business deserves the chance to flourish and thrive; but so do you.
Adapting to the entrepreneur lifestyle means purposefully and actively making the time for mental and physical health, a social life, and scheduled breaks from work on a regular basis.
You have to set limits, restrictions and boundaries. You have to be clear with yourself, and dedicated to protecting your health in this process.
Here are the commitments I have had to make for myself to get to where I needed to– in a way that was both healthy and sustainable.
1. Commit to healthy eating habits.
Put the phone and laptop down and nourish your body!
Unfortunately, eating is often secondary to building my business, leaving me prey to unhealthy choices.
Listen, our health matters. What good is a business if we don’t take care of ourselves?
I’ve learned to keep healthy snacks everywhere. A bag of nuts in my bag helps curb hunger while I’m waiting to get home to cook a healthy meal. If I don’t have something to grab quickly, I’m likely to hit a delivery app on my phone and inhale something I’ll regret.
It may also be time to learn to cook and make your own meals.
2. Commit to a good night’s sleep.
The necessity of sleep is no exaggeration. Personally, I do whatever I need to make sure I’m in bed at a time that allows me plenty of hours to rest. I can’t do what I need to do without a rested brain, and neither can you!
Of course, there are nights when life takes over and it doesn’t happen. But for the most part, sleep is a number one priority. I don’t have time for the negative domino effect that takes place after pulling an all-nighter.
3. Commit to moving your body every day.
Trying to squeeze in a fitness regimen feels impossible at times. Still, I know I have to, or I’ll end up at the doctor’s office more than my company’s office.
We need to stay fit for our sake and for those who love us. I have found the only way to make it happen is with a fairly strict schedule.
I noticed that every time life got in the way, it was exercise I’d reschedule. No more. Exercise is now delegated to a certain time every day and nothing trumps it.
Take a 30-minute walk in the morning or do squats at your desk. Whatever it takes, just squeeze something in that counts as keeping your heart healthy and your body fit.
4. Commit to protecting your social and personal life at all costs.
Remember a social life? I sort of do.
In all seriousness, if you’ve lost this part of your life, get it back. Adapting to the entrepreneur lifestyle means adjusting in the way we socialize.
I enjoy a night in alone. However, I make sure I get out with friends once or twice a month, otherwise I could easily become antisocial, and I know that isn’t good for me emotionally or mentally.
If you’re single like I am, dating looks very different as an entrepreneur. It’s got to be with someone who understands my passion and need to put my business high on the priority list.
5. Commit to taking BREAKS.
Trust me, I know—it’s tough to actually take time off from a business I am running. Still, I know it’s good for me.
Plan a couple of trips each year and allow no computers, phones, or anything business-related. It refreshes the soul and often causes our minds to generate more creative thoughts when we return.
6. Commit to celebrating and believing in yourself.
Remember to love yourself. Remember to give yourself grace. Remember to be proud of what you’re doing.
It’s awesome. You’re crushing it. What you’re doing is difficult, and that’s ok. You’ll make mistakes sometimes. You’ll feel the stress of bills. You’ll get frustrated. That’s all normal.
Commit to reminding yourself of how strong you are, and try not to let the hustle and bustle of the grind squash your mental health in the process.
Taking care of yourself isn’t selfish and it isn’t counterproductive.
It’s a necessity in prioritizing a busy entrepreneurial lifestyle.
Rest, stay fit, and make time for fun and much-needed breaks from work.
You’ve got this.