Business Essentials

5 Ways To Fit Self Care Into Your Busy Schedule

5 Ways To Fit Self Care Into Your Busy Schedule

Tuesday, 14 December 2021

When you are running a business, it is easy to feel like you never have time to complete everything on your to do list, let alone have some time for yourself.


It’s no surprise that entrepreneurs are 50% more likely to experience mental health issues and are the demographic most at risk of experiencing burnout. Whilst taking time out for self-care might feel like a luxury, it is in fact essential that you look after your own wellbeing if you hope to grow a successful business. However, whether you are trying to get a business idea off the ground or running a growing team, it’s unlikely that you will have the time to treat yourself to a 2-week detoxifying yoga retreat in Cost Rica. Here are our 5 top tips for fitting self-care in to your busy schedule.



Mix up your Morning Routine


Most of us are guilty of picking up our phones as soon as we wake up in the morning. We can say that it’s to turn our alarms off, but we all know that it doesn’t stop after we hit the snooze button. Suddenly, we’re responding to emails, scrolling through social media and next thing you know you we’ve spent 20 minutes staring at a tiny screen, before we have even got out of bed. 


Instead of reaching for your phone, try reaching for the yoga mat. Even a five-minute stretch straight after you get out of bed can really make a difference to how you feel as you start your day. Then try and take some time to say some positive affirmations. Saying them out loud to yourself might feel silly at first, but once you get into the practice, you’ll soon notice the difference it makes to your mindset for the rest of the day. Some of our favourites include:


  • Today I will make progress towards my goals. 
    I am capable of what I am willing to work for. 
  • I am thankful for what I have, even if it is not perfect. 
  • I believe in myself. I am capable of whatever I set my mind too.



Practice Mindfulness in Unlikely Places


Mindfulness might sound like something you have to practice on a mountain top in Nepal, but that couldn’t be further from the truth. It is all about being present in your body and consciously aware of your actions. The process of mindfulness grounds you and slows you down and even a few minutes a day of this action can have a dramatic effect on your mental health.  The easiest way to bring mindfulness into your busy schedule is to take your time and really think about your actions when you are undertaking everyday activities. Some great examples include:


  • When you’re in the shower – taking the time to notice the smell of the shower gel, the temperature of the water on your skin and be mindful of the sound when you switch the water off.
  • When you’re making a cup of tea – be mindful of the sound the kettles makes as it boils, the steam coming out of it. Watch how the water in the cup changes colour as the tea infuses into it.
  • When you’re standing in a queue – notice your surroundings. If outside, take in the nature. Become aware of your posture and how you are breathing. Send kind thoughts to the people in front of you.


Walk Away from Your Desk – And Your Stress


Being stuck at a desk, staring at a computer all day can be detrimental to our health in a multitude of ways, from strained eyesight to poor posture. It’s can also be bad for our mental wellbeing - physically active people are 30% more likely to suffer from depression. Walking not only gets you away from the computer but it will also cause a release of endorphins which reduces feelings of stress and anxiety.


If possible, consider walking to work to set you up for the rest of the day or walking home to help you switch off. Even a quick walk at lunchtime could be enough to have a positive impact on us, researchers at the University of Essex found that as little as 5 minutes of outdoor exercise can boost our wellbeing.


Fresh air and a change of scene can also stimulate creativity, so if you find yourself stuck on a problem, rather than stressing out at your desk, take a stroll around the block.


How to End Your Day


In the same way it’s essential to start your day right, your evening routine is just as critical. The most important thing is to have a strict and clear cut off point for all tech, especially the mobile phone that keeps your brain focused on work. It’s especially pertinent that you set clear tech boundaries if you work from home, or if you need to work in the evenings.


No matter how busy you are, taking a small amount of time each evening for yourself will make a huge difference to your mindset – which will help you be more productive the following day. Some easy, quick ways to relax include:


  • Drink a soothing tea, like chamomile or peppermint
  • Dim the lights and light a scented candle – lavender is great for helping you destress
  • Get back on the mat! Whilst some poses are great for energising you at the start of the day, you want to try more relaxing poses before you get in to bed. Lying on your back or holding child pose whilst taking long, deep breath is a great way of signalling to your body that it’s time to switch off.
  • Try a visual body scan. Lie on your back and visualize each part of your body, from head to toe. When you find places of stress, take a moment to breathe deeply into that area, until it relaxes.


Don't Neglect The Sandman


Ignore the crazy CEO stories of going to bed at midnight and waking up at 4.30am to hit the gym – getting at least 8 hours sleep is your biggest weapon against burn out and shouldn’t be neglected.


In a recent Ted Talk Professor Matt Walker spoke about the benefits of a good night’s sleep and the dangers of missing out on it. Not only are there a host of serious health benefits to being well rested (as an extreme illustration of this point, Matt explains that car crashes and cardiac arrests spike the day that the clocks go forward) but it’s essential for your professional performance. Matt’s research indicates the amount of sleep a CEO gets directly correlates to how charismatic they are. He also noted that people who get less sleep produce fewer creative solutions – which isn’t great if you are an entrepreneur constantly trying to problem solve and innovate.   









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