Entrepreneurs often fall into the trap of being so busy all the time that they neglect their health. Their thoughts are focused on business matters, so they forget to think about essential things like diet, exercise, and sleep. If you are one of these entrepreneurs, you probably know that it’s time to make a change. Your body and your mind are linked, so taking care of one helps take care of the other. Entrepreneur Cody Moxam has a few health tips for who folks who neglect taking care of themselves due to their busy schedules:
Eat a healthy diet
Eating a healthy diet may seem like an obvious piece of advice, but reinforcement never hurts! You probably know that you need to be eating better, but grabbing fast food and not even thinking about the food you are (or not) putting in your body takes less time than putting effort into cooking a nourishing meal. Cooking does not have to be time-consuming, though, and it helps to reframe your thinking so that you regard food as fuel more so than something to make hunger pangs go away. Your diet affects almost every aspect of your body—your very survival depends on it—so take care to eat fruits, vegetables, and other foods that sharpen both your body and mind.
Take some time for yourself
On a related note, take time for yourself during the day—and your lunch break is a convenient time to do so. Entrepreneur Cindy M. Liebel says:
“Take time to sit down and enjoy lunchtime… I used to make a quick meal or grab a snack and head right back to my desk on the computer doing work stuff or eating in between creating. Instead, I now take time to sit down and eat my meal/snack while enjoying the silence while reading a book, magazine, or newspaper. It has been rewarding.”
You shouldn’t work in your bed, so don’t eat lunch at your desk. Give yourself some time to slow down and recharge in the middle of the day.
Get plenty of sleep
This one is also obvious, but again, let’s drive the point home: your body and your mind need sleep. Sleep rhythms move in one-and-a-half hour cycles, so experts advise that you get either seven-and-a-half or nine hours of sleep each night. When you get as much rest as you need, you can tackle the day ahead with alertness and sharpness of mind.
Find an excuse to walk
You know you need your exercise, so find ways to squeeze it in throughout your day. If not a trip to the gym, it might look like a few short workouts here and there, a bike ride in the morning, or using any excuse to walk. Something you can do is suggest walking meetings whenever you need to meet with business contacts and friends instead of sitting down with them: you can stroll around the park while still having your conversation, improve your mood, and the uniqueness of the situation can help inspire a less intimidating atmosphere.
Talk to people about things that aren’t business
Maintaining a proper work-life balance is essential. It’s healthy to talk to the people in your life, and ultimately, your relationships are far more important than any business venture. Do not neglect the people who care about you and make efforts to connect with people over something that is not business. As Cody Moxam makes clear on his personal site, he makes time for people and other hobbies, such as poetry, outside of his business and academic life.
Make time to wind down
Living in a constant state of go-go-go will take a toll on your physical and mental health. If you work right before bed and work as soon as you’ve had a cup of coffee in the morning, you’ll inevitably feel overwhelmed. Mastin Kipp, the author of Claim Your Power, says:
“The best way to start the day is to make sure you have a solid wind down period the night before. I eat dinner three hours before bed with lean protein and greens and a digestive enzyme so that my body is not spending its resting hours digesting food and instead, helping me repair and recover from the day’s stress and activities.”
Take time to relax at night. Read a book, watch TV, and talk to people—your business endeavors should not consume your life. The life of an entrepreneur can be demanding, but you should not sacrifice your health for it. What is your venture for if you cannot enjoy it? Remember to put your health first so that not only are you in the best physical and mental shape possible to be the best professional you can be, you can embrace other aspects of life.