As a business leader, you can’t think of the last time you weren’t stressed. After all, there’s always something to do. Whether you’re starting up a new business and looking for potential funders, or you’re opening up a new office that requires a ton of paperwork, it’s like you’re always busy. And that, inevitably, leads to stress. Sure, there are perks to running your own business, like choosing your own schedule and coming up with cool t-shirt mockups for your team to wear. But sometimes it feels like the day never ends.
That’s why it’s important to come up with the right strategies to deal with stress. Even when you’re at your busiest, if you follow these tips, you’ll feel less stressed. So if you’re ready to have healthier stress levels while running your business successfully, read on.
It can be hard to let go of responsibilities when you’re a business leader. Especially if you’ve only just recently expanded your team, and you used to work alone, the last thing you want to do is hand over what you usually do to other people. But as your business grows, delegating is necessary. Just take a look at how Richard Branson, Virgin’s founder, explains it:
“[I]t’s vital to the success of your business that you learn to hand off those that you aren’t able to do well. I’m not saying that you should never try your hand at a new skill — entrepreneurs are usually insatiably curious…When I try a new task and find it’s not my cup of tea, or I’m simply not cut out to do it, I delegate it to someone who is passionate about the work, knowing that person will do a great job. This is part of our philosophy at Virgin: We aren’t limited by the skills of the people on our team, but also employ hundreds of agencies, contractors, and freelancers.”
Considering that Virgin Media’s global revenue in 2016 was 4.8 billion GBP, this is advice worth taking.
If you’re always busy with your business, it’s likely that the last thing you have time for is exercise. Sure, eating right is possible some of the time–all you need is to cook more at home, or order something healthy on Seamless when you’re working late at the office–but how are you going to have to time to go to the gym? And shower? And somehow have time to get into the right clothes and head back to a cocktail meeting with a client in the early evening?
But the fact is, exercise is important. For one thing, it’ll lift your mood: exercising for only 20 minutes can benefit your mood for the next 12 hours, which means that you’ll do great on that early morning presentation if you head to the gym first. The endorphins will be pumping, and you’ll close the deal. But it’ll also help you focus. And, if you’re fit, you’ll be taken more seriously in the business world (which is a shame, but that’s the way it is).
According to entrepreneur Josh Steimle, “I schedule my workouts during the workday and prioritize exercise over all my work activities. There is some flexibility, but if there is a conflict between a trail run I need to get in, and a meeting with a client, I’ll reschedule the client meeting first…[A]s soon as I start pushing workouts off, I’ll start missing workouts, and once I start missing workouts, I’m close to stopping workouts altogether. Exercise must come first, or it’s unlikely to happen at all.”
3 Make time for yourself
Finally, don’t forget to make time for yourself. It may seem impossible, but it’s important! At first, it’s difficult, but the best way to find time to do what you love–whether that’s going to the movies once a week or spending time with your family–is to physically schedule it in. Set aside time just for you, and stick to it no matter what your work responsibilities. (After all, as discussed above: you can always delegate.)
Considering that stress accounts for about 37 percent of work-related illnesses, and the last thing you want is to be too sick to come into work, it’s also beneficial to your business for you to relax. Even if you do a quick twenty minutes of yoga every morning, you’ll start seeing benefits immediately.
By using these strategies, you’ll be less stressed while running your business. And that means you’ll feel more comfortable running it, which in the long-term will guarantee your business’s success.
What stresses you out most at work?