Being a business owner or entrepreneur means that you have an endless list of jobs to do. You have to obtain new customers and manage existing ones, optimise your business processes, lead your team, look after their health and wellbeing as well as your own, and more. With so much to do and manage, it is likely that you will encounter high levels of work-related stress. According to HSE, work-related stress, depression or anxiety are responsible for half of all work-related ill health. If you do not look after yourself, this stress could lead to burnout over time.
By taking quality time to de-stress and recuperate, you are more likely to avoid burnout and to be able to tackle each day in a sustainable way. In this blog post, we share some suggestions on how to de-stress as a business owner.
Meditation has many benefits: it reduces stress levels, reduces anxiety, helps to clear your mind and improves your focus. Imagine how this could benefit you and your business!
There are several types of meditation practice that you can do. You just have to make a quick search on Google to find a full list. Pick the one that works best for you. Some of the meditation types we particularly like are:
- Mindfulness meditation – this meditation involves you sitting down, focusing on the present moment intentionally and observing your thoughts and feelings without judgement. You could do this in your garden or in your living room.
- Guided meditation – this consists of a narrator guiding you through a meditation. There are many guided meditations on YouTube, but you can also download apps such as Headspace and Calm if you would prefer. Guided meditation is ideal for beginners.
To get the full benefits of meditation, including its ability to reduce stress, you need to do it daily on a consistent basis. You could start at 10 minutes a day and gradually increase this over time.
2. Say no
As a business owner, sometimes it can be hard to say no to opportunities or social events. You may feel that you have to say yes to everything for fear of missing out or upsetting someone. But this can easily lead to overwhelm and cause unnecessary stress.
You may just need some time to yourself, to take a hot bath, curl up in bed with your favourite book, or to chill with your favourite Netflix series. This ‘me time’ is absolutely essential for recuperation so that you have the energy to run your business; it should be a top priority. So, think about what you need today and start saying no to things that you do not really want to do.
3. Exercise or walk out in nature
Exercise is a great way to combat stress and has both physical and mental health benefits. Exercise releases endorphins and increases serotonin and dopamine, which will lower your stress levels. Exercise also helps you sleep better.
The NHS recommends that you undertake at least 150 minutes of moderate intensity activity a week, or 75 minutes of vigorous intensity activity. They suggest spreading this over 4-5 days a week or every day.
Choose an activity that you love. By choosing something you love, you are more likely to be motivated to continue with it regularly. You could try one or a multitude of these:
- Taking a brisk walk or run around your local park or greenspace areas
- Going out for a brisk walk or run on the beach
- Working out at your local gym or attending a spin class
- Joining a local dance class or sports club such as football or rugby
- Swimming or cycling
4. Unplug from technology
You may have a habit of responding to your work emails at all hours of the day; this, however, means that you never get to properly switch off and relax. On top of that, your phone, laptop and TV all emit blue light; this blue light interferes with your circadian rhythm which regulates your sleep and can impact your quality of sleep. Poor sleep can affect your ability to handle stress, causing a vicious cycle.
Switch your devices off, read a good book, have a relaxing bath, have set hours for working, and give yourself the time you need to de-stress and recuperate.
5. Incorporate fun and short trips away into your life
Incorporating your favourite hobbies and activities into your life on a regular basis will help bring you joy and help you de-stress. You might enjoy playing golf (Josh, the Founder of Bizpedia’s favourite!), going swimming, cycling, visiting your favourite location, exploring new places and soaking up the culture, undertaking a new activity such as kayaking, or, if you are an adrenaline junkie, something like indoor skydiving or Go Ape. It could even be as simple as spending time with your pets, your family, your friends and going out for a nice meal.
Not only that, but you should factor in short weekend trips or a week trip away. This is a great way not only to de-stress and take your mind off work but also to reward yourself for your hard work.
Taking time to de-stress will help you have a better work-life balance, help you look after yourself, and as a result have a positive impact on your business. Start adding the above to your life today to see the difference it makes.