“I have come to believe that caring for myself is not self indulgent. Caring for myself is an act of survival.”— Audre Lorde
It is no secret that running your own business can be a stressful and taxing undertaking for any entrepreneur. wegg® knows that laying the groundwork to turn a start-up into a global enterprise can be as challenging as it is rewarding. It is also not a secret that in our society, women are often put in a position of serving and caring for others before doing so for themselves. With this in mind, it can be said that women entrepreneurs are accustomed to putting their businesses first, and themselves last. If you don’t take care of yourself, how can you take care of your company?
In Stephanie Burns’ recent Forbes article, “Four Ways to Take Care of Your Mental Health When Running a Business,” she illustrates accessible and important strategies that all entrepreneurs could learn from.
Burns quotes “research by students, PhDs, and MDs from Berkeley, Stanford, and the University of California San Francisco,” which states that forty-nine percent of entrepreneurs were found to have at least one mental health condition. This finding shows that self-care is a critical avenue that many entrepreneurs should explore. Let’s explore Burns’ tips…
“Hold yourself accountable to taking time off.”
Work-life balance is a necessity in any career. When the boundaries between business hours and personal life are blurred, the possibility for an entrepreneur to not be present for either is presented. Burns references Ferris Jabr’s article for Scientific American, which states, “Downtime replenishes the brain’s stores of attention and motivation, encourages productivity and creativity, and is essential to both achieve our highest levels of performance and simply form stable memories in everyday life.”
“When you take breaks, meditate or engage in physical activity.”
For workaholics, taking breaks can feel indulgent or like giving up. Breaks are necessary for peak productivity. Burns suggests taking active breaks, which can help entrepreneurs avoid sinking into feelings that they “are not doing enough.” She explains,
“You can amplify the benefit of your time off by allocating time to meditate. Mental Health America presented research from over 600 studies on the correlation between meditation and improved mental health, and found that meditation has a notable impact on stress reduction. Physical activity is also a great way to manage stress levels, promote endorphins, and return to work more energized.”
“Learn to gauge how burnt out you are.”
Checking in with yourself during every stage of starting and growing a business will increase the endurance and longevity of it. Burning out too soon on a passion project could prevent your company from achieving the heights it could reach. Burns explains, “When the work you once loved starts to lose its magic, it’s time to take a day or two off.”
“Join a community or support group of other entrepreneurs.”
wegg® believes that a healthy entrepreneur is a successful one. The network of wegg® educators, staff, and participants, is a community for any woman seeking entrepreneurship advancement. Our online resources are accessible to everyone, from those trying to take their booming business global, to the novice with a start-up idea. wegg® gives women entrepreneurs the tools they need to fuel their passions.