It’s no secret that in the hustle and bustle hubbub of modern day entrepreneurship, we’re often taught to wear our over-worked, over-saturated, maxed-out schedules as a badge of honor.
We’re constantly sold the idea that working ourselves into the ground is a necessary part of the “American dream”, that putting career before everything is the only way to make it big and if we’re taking time for ourselves, we just don’t want it as bad as the next guy.
While owning and running a business that aligns with our passions, purpose and vision for life is a calling we should count ourselves blessed to pursue, the price of "the hustle" has been known to take it’s toll on our health, happiness and general sanity...unless we have the right tools in our arsenal to ensure both our businesses and our bodies are being looked after.
So, with all this work, work, work and days that seem to somehow be getting shorter, what strategies can we implement to get more done without phoning in a favor to the Big Man upstairs and asking him if we could pretty, pretty please have just five more hours in the day?
Enter self-care. *gasp* I know what you may be thinking...
”Hold the freaking phone Renee, you’re asking me to add ANOTHER thing to my day and expecting that to help with my already overloaded schedule?”
I know it sounds counterintuitive but hear me out before you grab the pitch forks and torches and strong-arm me off the scene.
Self-care can and does make us more productive human beings, between 12% - 20% more productive on average according to recent studies. And get this, you’re an entrepreneur, so we ALREADY know you’re a motivated person, just imagine what results you could see if people working towards someone ELSE’S vision are getting those kinds of numbers.
Here are just five of the ways regular self-care helps us CRUSH our goals:
1) IT FORCES US TO SCHEDULE & ACCOMPLISH
We all know the feeling of looking at the “to-do” list and thinking: “Wow, this is...I’m going back to bed”. If we expect to fit “me time” into our already packed days, there’s no way it’s getting done without some serious scheduling. The good news? Time blocking and putting REAL appointments into our calendars does this funny little thing to our brains. It makes the reality of what we need to get done tangible and assigns it specific parameters. The human psyche loves specificity, it gives us a clear path to follow and makes us feel motivated to GET SHIT DONE. Keller Williams Realty, voted both the #1 training company and the happiest place to work in the US last year, has a little saying that I've always found to be true when it comes to scheduling: “All work expands to fill the time allowed”. Our brains are great at figuring out when we aren’t sincere about something, which means if you give yourself a day to get something done, it'll probably take you all day to do it. If you give yourself two hours to get something done because you have a massage scheduled at 2:30 damn it and it will not be missed, it’ll take two hours. When we set boundaries on our time, our daily tasks don’t have the opportunity to linger; we send a clear message to our cells to kick it into high gear and PERFORM to meet the demand.
2) IT MAKES US MORE FOCUSED & CREATIVE
As a creative entrepreneur, I know first hand the struggles of brain-no-workie syndrome. When we press our brains and bodies to the max with no time for recentering, we lose our ability to:
Focus on the task at hand: Ever found yourself needing to finish that one stuuuuuuupid sentence in that email but suddenly you’ve forgotten how to speak because you have 27 other thoughts all fighting for precedence in