There’s no getting around the fact that running your own business can be stressful. Unlike people employed in 9-5 jobs, you don’t get to simply switch off in the evenings or at weekends. Being in charge of a company is a major responsibility and at times it can seem all-consuming. However, unless you’re prepared to experience burnout, it’s vital that you take steps to control your stress levels. It’s important to realise that excessive and prolonged pressure can seriously impair your ability to think clearly, which could be bad news for your business. It can also take its toll on your physical and mental wellbeing.
To help you avoid these potential pitfalls, here’s an entrepreneur’s guide to keeping stress in check.
Learn to prioritise, and delegate where appropriate
As leading businessman Chris Niarchos of Appco Group notes, effective time management is key when you’re heading up a company. In a recent blog post offering advice to fellow entrepreneurs, he stated that if you fail to plan your days effectively, it’s easy to feel overwhelmed by the sheer weight of work you have to get through. He went to highlight the importance of prioritising the most crucial tasks and working on these first, and of delegating responsibilities to appropriate people within your organisation.
If you’re a perfectionist, you might find it hard to get into the habit of sharing work out, but not doing so is a recipe for disaster. Micromanaging every element of your business is unsustainable in the long run and it’s bound to cause your stress levels to spike. It also means you’ll have less time to focus on crucial tasks like setting the strategic direction for your company.
Take time out
There’s always something you could be doing to better your business, but it’s crucial that you allow yourself some downtime to relax and unwind. By setting aside designated slots in your schedule to catch up with family and friends and generally de-stress, you’ll give yourself some space to breathe and reenergise. Taking time out like this can also help to remind you of what’s really important in life and why you’re trying so hard to make a success of your business in the first place.
Look after your health
When you’re rushed, it’s all too easy to neglect your health. For example, you might find yourself filling up on junk food and consuming too much caffeine. Perhaps you struggle to get enough sleep as well, and maybe you can’t find the time to exercise. Over the long-term, this can affect your wellbeing and it cause your stress levels to soar. So, even when you’re busy, it’s important to make an effort to live healthily. Simple changes, like going to bed an hour earlier and taking a healthy lunch with you to work each day, can make a big difference. Also, try to fit regular exercise into your schedule. Bear in mind that physical activity, whether it’s a run to work or a session at the gym, can be a big stress reliever.
If you feel fit and healthy, you should find it easier to cope with the pressures of running a business.