We’ve been discussing about self-care for the past few days. We have also touched some of the things we need to do to make sure our bodies and minds are healthy. Many of us know the importance of self-care, yet take it very lightly.
We will be talking about business owners or entrepreneurs on this post. Their daily responsibilities may differ based on the size as well as scope of their business, but the average business owner is juggling amongst different roles. They usually spend about 16 hours a day running activities of the business. They need to make enough income to grow the business while also taking care of their needs.
The detailed article of today is an inspiring life story from Helen, a friend and an entrepreneur.
Helen is an acquaintance who has a beauty and hairdressing salon for ladies and young girls. I visited her salon with a friend who usually does her hair too at Helen’s Beauty (that’s the business name). I wasn’t planning to do my hair that day, but when I saw how excellent the braids on one of the clients, I thought I will go for it. We finished braiding my hair a little late and decided to go for dinner together at a nearby restaurant. That’s when I got to know more about Helen and her business.
Helen is a single mum of two (8-year old daughter and 10-year old son). She has two employees who work with her at the beauty salon. Helen’s Beauty opens at 8am to 8pm on Monday to Friday, 8am to 9pm on Saturday and closed on Sundays. I asked how her typical day was like. Here is what she shared with me.
“Running my own business and taking care of my children alone is no piece of cake,” she said. Her business is now four years since she started. “Things were not that bad for the second year because I started making profit … and then my husband lost his life in a car accident,” she continued with a forced smile.
Even though she lost her husband, she just didn’t give up. Her business has been profitable since then. Her two children are well taken care of. I was wondering how she could go about this all alone, especially as I know what it takes for me and my husband to bring up my two little cuties. How does she do this and still remain beautiful and very healthy?
“One of the greatest lessons I learned after loosing my husband in the road accident is the importance of self-care,” she said. “Two months after his death, I realised how haggard I was – putting on weight, always feeling stressed. I was really “uncomfortable in my own skin”,” she said laughing.
She continued that one day as she was getting ready for church she stared at herself in the mirror and said quietly to herself “What am I doing to my life?” That was when she took a decision that she won’t let her husbands death to take her to an early grave. “I have skillful hands, I have two mouths to feed and two others who depend on me for their livelihood. I can’t just let them down,” she said.
According to Helen, that was how she came to understand that taking care of herself was very important if she had to succeed. She said to be successful in business, you must be “successful in your mind and body”. You can’t run your own business when you are not healthy.
Many business owners who are just starting forget about the importance of self-care especially when they are focused on achieving something. On the contrary, most successful entrepreneurs who have been into business for a long time have learned this lesson. I know many like Helen learned it through the hard way.
How does she manage her business, take care of her children and without leaving self-care to slide away again? “I create time for me, exercise daily, I say no when it is necessary, eat healthy, sleep is a priority and most importantly I spend quality time with my kids,” she said.
Helen just gave me a summary of the basic things you do to feel the importance of self-care in your life as an entrepreneur. A “me time” is one of the most important part of the busy day of an entrepreneur. According to Helen, she does that on a daily basis. The first thing she does in the morning is meditation. After meditating, she plans her daily schedule and prepare the kids for school/holiday club.
“I am lucky now that the kids are a little older. I taught them how to take care of themselves at an early age. With this, I don’t have to supervise them when it comes to making their bed, taking their bath and so on,” she said. After the children take their bus to school, Helen rushes to the grocery store if she needs anything giving her plenty of time afterwards to go to the gym.
“I am not a vegan, but vegetables make a great part of my diet. My entire Sunday is for my kids and I. We go to church come back and prepare lunch together. Most of the time, we spend our Sunday evening dancing together. I love dancing and teach them also. My daughter is a great dancer,” she said.
What you eat must be nourishing to the body as a business owner or entrepreneur. It helps you to maintain your energy, to stay focus and boost your mood. This makes you to become more productive.
Many entrepreneurs find it difficult to include exercise into their daily routine. They value each second of their time and forget that exercising their body will be of any help to them. Helen told me she doesn’t joke with her gym time. Exercise just like goo diet helps us to increase our energy, focus better, boost confidence and relieve stress. This means it’s very necessary for business owners to take exercise seriously.
Helen mentioned dancing with her kids on Sundays. I wish I could do that all the time. Everyone needs a break from work once in a while. There’s no excellent break like doing what you enjoy such as dancing.
Successful entrepreneurs or business owners usually use their hobbies to blow off steam. When you do something that gives you fun, it gives your mind the much-needed break. This helps you to become more creative and re-energised too.
Thanks for reading xxx
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