As a business owner, you likely know the importance of focusing on self-care. You may wish to make it a priority. But between the challenges of running a company and life commitments, how do you find the time?
If you routinely skip taking care of yourself to focus on other priorities, suggest rethinking that stance. The time you set aside for self-care also helps your business and employees.
Fitting self-care into busy schedules
Self-care sounds like a welcome change of pace, but how do you fit taking care of yourself into an already crammed schedule? The following business owners explain how they do it.
“If I don’t schedule self-care, then it doesn’t happen. Of course, the best-laid plans never work out perfectly, but the key is that when I get out of sync, I have a plan to go back to.”
—Nate Checketts, CEO, Rhone
“I schedule time blocks for self-care each day as if they are business meetings. I don’t tell anyone that the time blocks are for self-care, but I stick to the commitment to myself. These time blocks include attending spin class, walking on the beach, enjoying a quiet cup of tea in my courtyard or just time in meditation.”
—Violette de Ayala, founder and CEO, FemCity, and author of The Self-Guided Guru Lessons for Everyday Humans
Make self-care a habit
“My self-care routine includes getting up early every day. I’m up by 4 am each morning, which means I own my world for the next two hours. During this time, I exercise and then get ready for the day.”
—Peter Shankman, host, Faster Than Normal podcast and founder, HARO
Do something fun
“My secret to self-care when I’m stressed out is three steps: first, go for a run. Then have a relaxing shower and then eat a chicken burger with extra chilli and bubble tea. Because you get endorphins from exercise and then dopamine from comfort food. I do this 2-3 times a week and it works every time.”
—Fred Schebesta, CEO, Finder.com.au
“The slower pace of COVID-19 made me question the need to fly interstate for meetings, say yes to every event as I valued the calm, creativity and clarity that came to me through the quieter times. It has taught me to think before I say yes and to truly appreciate the slower pace of life.
“I also lost track of my daily meditation for a little while, and this is something that I have brought back with a vengeance. In fact, I do believe my daily ten-minute meditation played a big part in guiding me through some of the most stressful, unprecedented times we all experienced in March/April last year.”
— Pamela Jabbour, founder and CEO, Total Image Group
Simplicity is best
“There are things that I still don’t get enough time to do, but I do as much as I can, like meditation. I find that it’s very good for stress.
“I recently purchased the Muse headband, the one that...actually reads your brainwaves and can tell you how deep into meditation you’ve gone. It’s got a soundtrack that helps you get there, and you’ll find that very effective.”
—Paul Scurrah, Managing Director and CEO Pacific National and former Virgin CEO
“I suggest eliminating the expectation that taking care of yourself has to be expensive and time-consuming. The two minutes you have before bedtime can be spent on a visualisation exercise. The five minutes you’re in the shower can be used to jam out to your favourite song. And the drive to work can be for listening to a motivational or educational podcast.”
—Jessi Beyer, owner, Jessi Beyer International
Your health is a worthwhile investment: you can’t work if you’re sick. No matter what self-care looks like to you, find the time, create the space, get support and, remember, self-care is an ongoing process.