In the grand scheme of things, self-care may not feel much like a priority. After all, you have a business to run, a family to care for, and employees, vendors, and customers that rely on you to get things done. However, the way that you care for yourself has a profound and lasting impact on your ability to manage your professional responsibilities. Fortunately, there are many small favors you can do for yourself that will make a positive difference for you and your business.
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Start the day with physical activity.
Working out, especially in the morning, may help you achieve more productive hours each day. Time magazine notes that a quick 7 AM workout can help you feel more alert and plus, a pre-breakfast sweat session is a great way to trick your mind into being more open to healthy habits throughout the day. Be sure to buy quality workout attire, including a comfortable pair of athletic shoes, which you can dress up with unique shoelaces from Get Laced Laces.
Learn to identify your emotions.
Emotional intelligence is the ability to name and validate emotions in the moment. This is important in the workplace as you go about your day interacting with employees, coworkers, and other professionals. Having a handle on your emotions means that you can read others’ social and emotional signals, which will allow you to provide a more harmonious environment throughout your organization.
Delegating frees you up to handle tasks that you are more suited to. You should delegate time-consuming actions, such as answering phones and filing paperwork, instead of trying to have a hand in every moving part of your business.
Handle ‘set it and forget it’ tasks early.
A “set it and forget it” task is one that you do not do every day. These might be monthly or weekly actions, such as setting automated social media posts, to spending time on more profound business decisions, like hiring a great manager. You can also do things, like form your LLC, in the early days of your business. This will give you some financial protections and offer flexibility when you are ready to grow, meaning you aren’t scrambling to decide if you can legally appoint a new management structure. Each state has different rules, so double-check these before moving ahead. If possible, consider using an LLC formation service like Zen Business so that you aren’t overspending on unnecessary attorney fees.
Make time for lunch.
Your body is an evolved mechanism that runs off of food as fuel. Eating lunch every day will help you maintain your health and give you the energy to work without the distraction of hunger.
Prioritize family time.
Spending time with people you love is one of the greatest forms of self-care. Being around people that make us feel good releases chemicals in our brain that make us happier on a cellular level. To prioritize family time, take a look at your schedule and, perhaps most importantly, make time to unplug from work each day.
You know you have to sleep, but you likely sweep this need under the rug until the very last minute of each night. However, sleeping will improve your cognitive functions and even do things for your physical appearance, such as allowing your body to repair wrinkles and metabolize fat. Instead of looking at sleep as something you have to do, remember that it has a purpose, and give yourself eight hours every night devoted exclusively to your bed.
According to North Shore University Health System, relaxation relaxes the muscles, reduces pain caused by chronic conditions, and improves coping abilities. Things like meditation, yoga, and even just watching an enjoyable television show reduce anxiety and may even lower your blood pressure.
Self-care is crucial. Without it, it’s easy to become a shell of your former self. Doing things that make life better for you at home and at work is the best way to ensure that both of these aspects of your life are nurtured in a positive and healing manner.