As a business leader, you’re always busy. Especially if it’s a small business and you have only a small team you’re working with, a lot of the responsibilities come down to you, which means working late nights and even on weekends. It’s worth it, of course; this is your business, and you’re running it as well as your life. Sometimes, you’re doing something that doesn’t take too much time, like coming up with the right hashtags for likes. But other times, you’re spending hours coming up with a new presentation for investors, and it takes so much time away from your life that you’re no longer getting the sleep or exercise you need.
And this can take a toll on your emotional health. Even though there’s something that’s supposed to be impressive about the entrepreneur who never sleeps, who wakes up in the middle of the night inspired with a new business idea to scribble it down, it’s unhealthy. So if you’re ready to take care of your emotional health, read on.
Detox from social media
The first thing you need to do is take stock of your activities on social media. Chances are, social media is an escape for you, and it isn’t a healthy one. Whether your business is doing well or you’re having trouble, Facebook and Instagram are places we can turn to for validation. Facebook has even admitted that they’ve designed the “notifications” feature to be emotionally addictive. And according to the Pew Research Center, a record share of Americans now own smartphones, with 77 percent of the population and 92 percent of 18 to 29-year-olds owning one. That means you’re likely not alone.
According to Life Advancer, some social media addiction signs include posting pictures of every single meal, reaching for your phone first thing in the morning, scrolling through Instagram or Facebook and you’re suddenly months or years in the past, being without wi-fi or 3G feels like a disaster, anxiously waiting for likes, and deleting posts without an adequate number of likes. If you think this might be the case for you, check out this social media detox guide. If your business can’t do without social media, consider hiring a social media specialist to handle those aspects of the business.
Give yourself time to sleep and relax
Another factor that might be negatively impacting your emotional health is lack of sleep and relaxation. Especially if you’ve just started a new business, or you’re having problems, you might find yourself having trouble falling asleep. Or fully relaxing when you’re trying to meditate. Maybe you’ve even ended up taking out some of this stress on people close to you or business partners–which is an easy mistake to make when you severely lack sleep and time off.
As of 2017, 36 percent of adults feel tired in the mornings. So if you’re having trouble sleeping, you’re not alone. But just because it’s common, that doesn’t mean it’s okay. Give yourself a book to read or practice meditation techniques before going to bed–and if that’s not enough, meet with a health professional to discuss other options. As for time to relax, whether that’s going to a spa or watching Netflix on the couch, schedule it into your calendar, the same way you would a business meeting. That’s the only way you’ll hold yourself accountable.
Talk to someone
Sometimes, when something’s bothering us, it can be hard to know how to deal with it. And often, our stressors are all tied up together. How many times have you felt like running your business successfully, being financially healthy, and enjoying your relationships seem to be intertwined issues? That’s because they are. Anytime there’s a stressor in one part of your life, it’s going to impact the others.
If you don’t know how to address these stressors, then it’s a good idea to talk to someone. Sometimes, a friend or a partner is enough. But if you find that this doesn’t work, you can always speak with a therapist. Employment of psychologists has been expected to grow at 14 percent from 2016 to 2026, which is above average for most professions–and not a surprise, considering the anxiety-filled world in which we live. If you think you’re too busy to see a therapist regularly, you can always see one online with a service like BetterHelp.
These are some of the best ways to emotionally healthy, even when you’re always working and running your own business. What other strategies to make sure that you’re emotionally healthy?