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Running a business requires committing a vast amount of time into making it successful. Many business owners end up sacrificing their health and fitness to make sure their businesses are profitable. But do you have to?
The reality is, you will have to work long hours for most businesses to do well. The latest studies show that 62% of business owners admit that running a business is more stressful than they expected. 39% of them also admitted to working more than 60 hours per week. There’s no doubt this will take a toll on one’s mental and physical health.
There are some ways to help reduce stress and find time for fitness while running a business that is sure to succeed.
1. Sleep Keeps You Healthy
Most Americans don’t get enough sleep. And working a 60-hour work week can begin to cut int your ability to get restful, regenerative sleep. Sleep allows you to focus and think clearly during the daytime and puts you at a lower risk for heart disease, high blood pressure, and depression.
To make sure you’re giving yourself every opportunity possible to be physically and mentally healthy, you’ll want to get at least 7 hours of sleep, but more can be beneficial, too.
Avoid heavy drinking and nighttime caffeine. You should also prepare your brain for sleep by keeping a regular sleep schedule and going to be at the same time every night.
2. Meals Matter
We cannot emphasize how much your diet affects your health. Don’t pack a boring turkey sandwich every day. You’ll experience food burnout and miss out on the full nutrition you need.
Eat fruits and vegetables as often as you can. This means at least daily. Fruits and veggies also reduce your risk of heart disease while improving your digestive health. Keep a bag of bite-sized carrots on your desk to snack on as you work. Pineapple also makes a great midday snack that will brighten your day.
Maintain variety and color. That turkey sandwich isn’t doing you any favors day after day. Eating a rainbow of food helps ensure you’re getting a variety of sources for your vitamins, minerals, and proteins.
3. Squeeze in a 30-Minute Workout
When you’re making your schedule, make time for a workout. If you just listed your latest domain name and uploaded 19 new items in your online store, reward yourself with 30 minutes of exercise.
Half an hour of exercise will do wonders for your physique and your well being. The CDC suggests that adults exercise for 30 minutes every day or 2 and a half hours every week. This will help with your metabolism, heart health, and help you burn a few extra calories.
Your 30 minutes don’t need to be an exercise class, you can exercise every hour by getting up, doing 3 minutes of jumping jacks then 2 minutes of squats. Or you can take the stairs instead of the elevator. You can even park at the back of the parking lot to get in a little extra cardio.
4. Schedule Downtime
Downtime is just as important to your health as getting enough sleep. When you’re working 50, 60, or 70 hours per week, you’re headed toward mental burnout and stress. This doesn’t mean you have to meditate to ocean sounds, but it can be time for you to devote to a hobby or personal maintenance.
Schedule yourself a facial or manicure on a weekday for some midweek relaxation. Or treat yourself to a pedicure at home. Try switching off by reading a good book or taking a bath instead of a shower.
Make time for your friends, too. Sometimes it’s easy to cancel on a friend rather than reschedule or postpone a work appointment. You need your friends to keep you level and spend your downtime with, don’t take them for granted.
5. Preventative Medicine Is a Must
This one may not seem like it needs to be stated. Many business owners neglect their regular checkups and preventative health. Don’t let a small health problem snowball and keep you from being as healthy as you can be.
You will want to get the standard physical every year and get your eyes checked. Your other annual exams are important, too, don’t skip your dental cleanings or mammograms.
It can be hard for business owners to find someone to talk to. If you’re dealing with work-related stress and juggling too much, you may want to talk to a therapist to help you balance the stress out. Therapists can help you discuss relationship struggles or the pressure of owning a business.
Once you own a business, it can consume your life, but don’t sacrifice your health. Remember to keep a balance and allow time for yourself and those you care about. If you burn out or don’t take care of yourself, your business will ultimately suffer in the long run. Get up and do a few jumping jacks before jumping back into that spreadsheet.
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