Self care is very important to me. I know when I say the phrase “self care” a lot can come to mind. I’m not just talking about the meaningless phrase or trend that’s sweeping across Instagram. I’m talking about sustainable practices for your everyday life that will not only benefit you, but also your business.
In the early days of building my business, I did NOT take self care seriously. Going for a walk or taking an evening off of work to hang out with friends was a very scarce activity for me. I was working and focusing so hard on getting myself and my business to the next level. Little did I realize that allowing myself to step away would give me breathing room for more creative ideas, better perspective on workflows and more. I was under the impression that in order to achieve success, I needed to hustle my way there.
Nowadays, I couldn’t be more different. In fact, one of the main focuses in my work days and in general is self care! Not only has this shift allowed me to be more creative, I’m now in better moods, I think more clearly, I’m excited to start the day and I have more sustained energy throughout the day!
So, if you’re in a slump or feel like you’re on the hamster wheel of hustle, keep reading.
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7 Self Care Tips for Business Owners
1. Exercise Daily
Moving my body first thing in the morning has been an absolute game changer for me. I have been attending HIIT Strength group training classes 4-6 times a week at a gym by my house for the past year plus. When the alarm goes off at 5:25am I am sooo tempted to hit the snooze button. But the way I feel after the class is what gets me out of bed. I feel energized, excited and my work and performance in the studio benefit. And guess what? If you can’t afford a gym membership or don’t enjoy group fitness, squats are free, pushups are free… All you need is a little motivation and 20 minutes of your time to reap the benefits of exercise in your work day. Oh and as a little bonus, this Harvard study shows how regular exercise improves your memory and learning skills. Major plus!
2. Outside Time
Whenever I’m feeling uninspired or in a creative rut, I go outside. Not only that, I try to spend at least TWO hours each day outside, whether that’s gardening, playing at the park with my son or going for a hike, it is absolutely necessary for all of us to get outside time. I won’t go into all the benefits of Vitamin D and UVA light here, but for me, going outside and getting fresh air gives me a fresh perspective. There’s nothing like curing that unmotivated and stuck feeling with some sunshine and fresh air!
3. Eat Real Food
If you follow me on Instagram, then you may already know I’m kind of into nutrition and health. I have a whole story highlight dedicated to how I eat, and how I’ve been able to hack some of my health issues from the past. I’m not going to go into all of the details here—go check out my highlight “Health”—but if I want to feel sluggish and brain-foggy, then all I have to do is eat processed foods or anything with seed oils in it. If I don’t have a clear mind and body, I can’t do my best work. So eating real, clean foods is a HUGE self care tip for me.
Staying away from sluggish foods that contain synthetic ingredients and inflammatory oils and ingredients has been a game changer for my work days and life. I personally mainly eat clean, grass finished meats, and fruit with some raw dairy and root vegetables. Do I have to put in extra effort and cook all of my meals? Yes, but the benefits outweigh the inconvenience or time it takes me to cook up some good food. This isn’t for everyone, but I’ve noticed a huge difference in my days and this is not habitual for me.
4. Find a Hobby Outside of Your Work
Lately my hobby has been cooking and reading about nutrition. I’ve always dreamt about going back to school to study nutrition or something health related, so as of the last couple of years, I’ve been giving myself the education through taking online courses, reading tons of books and devouring podcasts. It’s what I do every single night in the bath or sauna and it fills me up. In the first few years of starting my business, I had ZERO outside hobbies. I had no time (or that was my excuse)! I was working 12-18 hour days and the only things I did besides work was sleep, manage to feed myself and do it all over again. Giving myself something else to focus on for a time is helping to leave room for excitement. You know the saying, “Distance makes the heart grow fonder”? Well, having to focus on something else every day for a time, or every weekend will hugely impact your drive and motivation in your actual work days!
5. Get Into Breathwork
The power of our breath is so profound and way more impactful than most are even aware. Last year I read the book called Breathe, and it totally changed the way I view the simple, background act of breathing. Activating your breath and practicing breath work helps to stimulate our vagus nervous system and reduce anxiety and stress. The vagus nerve is a cranial nerve that winds around connecting our brain to organs like our lungs, heart and digestive system and is responsible for directing us into our relaxed or parasympathetic state. When I’m calm, I can think more clearly, communicate more effectively and create work in a flow state. Never underestimate the power of breathing!
6. Create an Inspiring Workspace
This podcast is by one of my favorite neuroscientists Dr. Huberman, and he discusses the impact of light, how to set up your workspace to improve productivity, body posture and more. It’s highly insightful and will show you how to design a work environment that will allow you to be more creative and productive. Another important thing for me in this self care tip is having a clean workspace. If my desk is messy, I feel uninspired.
7. Treat Yo’ Self
You work hard, treat yourself!! I used to feel so guilty taking time off for vacation, or buying that shirt or pair of jeans I had saved up for. But celebrating small (or big) victories helps you to set goals and stick to them, stay excited and motivated about what you’re doing and more. Obviously, I like to keep this reasonable and I’m not saying to go out and blow all of your cash, but it could even be something as simple as taking the day off to go to the beach or your favorite park as a reward for a big launch or successful month!
Comment below and tell me your favorite self care tip or practice to staying inspired and relaxed!