The "No-BS" Guide to Self Care for Female Entrepreneurs
Self care is a topic that I don't think gets talked about enough - and I don’t mean just the “pamper yourself and you’ll be fine” type!
Self care goes much, much deeper than that. It isn’t just about looking after your physical body but also how to care for your mind as an entrepreneur.
In this topic, I’ll touch on some of the more intrinsic reasons to practice self care, such as:
Mindset modifications for self-care
Truth about “hustling” until you make it
The signs of burnout you may be ignoring
Dealing with long-term stress and burnout
So as usual, let’s get started with our Mindset Modification!
“I Can Better Provide and Impact The World Around Me When I Am Physically and Mentally At My Best.”
Yes, the first step to conquering self care is to know that the world won’t end and no one minds if you take time off.
Your business will be fine, your friends won’t be mad at you, your family members will understand, and your dog is not going die.
In fact, the world doesn’t care if you take time off.
A lot of the ideas and beliefs you have about taking time outs are pre-conceived assumptions. That means just because you believe something will go wrong, that doesn’t make it a fact.
It’s alright to take your mind off building your dreams, your tribe, or your brand, and start making regular time for self development.
You can’t change and impact the world when your energy is running on empty. In these modern times, taking time out is not a privilege - it is an absolute necessity.
The Truth About Self Care for Female Entrepreneurs
I promise you this:
You can't serve the world and create an impact when your vibration and energy doesn’t match up to the universe’s abundance.
So the first thing to do is to have certain practices in place.
What do you do?
You listen to your body.
Everybody’s body works differently so it’s important to cultivate a habit of “listening” to your body. For example:
Are you an early riser or late sleeper?
Are you more productive in the morning or in the evening?
How many continuous hours of work can you perform before you begin to get tired?
Even so, is it physical or mental tiredness?
Do you require one long power nap or several breaks in between work?
Do you work better under stress or without stress?
How long can you pay close attention to something before your mind wanders off?
All these questions are absolutely pivotal to how you perform your individual self care. Once you start noticing a pattern in the way your body functions and how it reacts to external stimuli, then you have a better understanding of how to tweak it to suit your body’s needs.
Don’t Fall for The #Hustle4Life Trope
Here’s a truth pill we all need to swallow:
The whole “24/7 hustle” mentality is not only ridiculous but is also a really bad joke perpetuated by a few popular entrepreneurship personalities.
In fact, it is a pretty clever marketing ploy used to keep these personalities relevant. They keep hawking it because people are willing to buy into it. I mean, if it worked for these famous people, it should work for you too, right?
NO. We are human beings and we are not built for that type of hustle and overwork.
It’s all about balance. Human beings have both a mind and body. Not just one or the other. We are, by our intrinsic nature, required to care for both at the same time.
Don’t Feel Bad for Wanting to Have a Little Fun
There are a lot of entrepreneurial archetypes out there who vehemently renounce mind-numbing entertainment like the TV… but truth is, some entertainment is good for the soul.
It has become somewhat of a pop-entrepreneur-culture to avoid the idiot box if you ever want to see the light of success - and that’s where the real harm is. There’s nothing wrong with zoning-out on an episode of Keeping Up With The Kardashians every once in a while.
Think about this for a second:
Have you ever been in a situation where you’ve been working for so long that your mind just can’t switch off at the end of the day?
It happens to a lot of people and it affects their partners, families, friends and even pets. We’ve come to this era where if you don’t work hard, you don’t deserve the success. To many, this ‘work til you drop’ culture causes more problems than solves them.
Watching TV is not a sin. It’s just entertainment. It doesn’t make you stupid and it won’t fry your brain. Even Tony Robbins say that he watches Family Guy often to switch off.
Everyone needs something to allow their brains to just completely let go and wander. You do whatever works for you.
The Life-Changing Magic of Being Alone
The best thing you’ll learn here is:
Self care is really about managing the energies around you.
We are surrounded by energies 24/7 - from the things we touch to the food we eat, and most importantly, the people we surround ourselves with - these are all external energies that have an affect on us.
Managing energies doesn’t take a lot of skill but it does require you to step outside your comfort. It’s tough because it may mean spending some time away from people or even Marie Kondo-ing the people in your life. (Ouch.)
Let’s go through a simple exercise to understand this concept:
Close your eyes. Imagine you are living in a world where you can roam freely with no fear of criticism and judgement. You have the freedom to be yourself and people only speak positive things about you. In this world, people love you just the way you are and sing praises for the amazingness that is you. They look up to you and look to you for light and guidance. When you speak, the crowd pays attention and listens because everything you say and think matters deeply to them. They celebrate the perfection that is you and believe that you are the magic that the world has been waiting for.
Now, answer these questions:
How different would your life be if you could live it your way?
What things would you do differently if no one judged you?
What emotions would you feel if people loved you just the way you are?
What challenges would you conquer if you had absolutely no fear?
As humans, we carry a lot of external programming that has been instilled in us by other people. This includes our belief systems, our likes and dislikes, our fears and most importantly, our pre-notions - the belief systems you already set in place before they even happen.
This is why energy clearing is the best kind of self care you can bestow yourself. Spending time away from other people puts you more in touch with your inner self, and don’t be afraid to let go of the negative people in your life to making space for the more positive energies to reside.
Take a soothing bath or take a walk in the park by yourself. Have a loving conversation with your inner self. You’d be surprised how comforting and energising it is to be in your own company, free from judgement and criticism.
Create a Space to Store Happy Thoughts and Energies
People always talk about conjuring happy thoughts and raising positive vibrations but no one teaches us how to maintain it. That’s why it’s important to create a special space to store your good energies and vibrations so you can make space within yourself for more good energies and vibrations.
That’s right - you can have and store as much as you want!
I tend to do this by journaling.
I keep a journal by my bedside that I go back to every night. I record any positive feelings, things that made me happy that day, and blessings that I’m grateful for. Every once in a while, I go back to it to count my blessings, deposit new thoughts and energies into it, and continue attracting more as I rise the next day.
Others do it by keeping a “gratitude jar”. Every day, you deposit little notes about something you’re grateful for that day. When the jar is full, take out and read each note. You’ll be surprised by how many blessings you’ve collected in your life without you noticing it.
Think of it as a small deposit into your “Bank of Blessings/Happiness/Positivity”.
Have Something to Look Forward To
Today, plan to go somewhere or to do something that has nothing to do with work.
It could be a family holiday, a solo getaway, a concert, an exhibition you’ve always wanted to go to, anything at all. Because it's so easy to get lost in our responsibilities that every day becomes a routine. Break the grind up every once in a while by having something to look forward to.
If you’ve been following me for a while, you’ll know I’m a believer of taking regular staycations. We’d spend a weekend in a nice hotel not too far away from where we are and leave our laptops behind, turn off our phones, and talk about everything except work.
People sometimes ask me, “But what if something needs your urgent attention?”
The fact is, nothing about work is that urgent.
Think about it:
The “busy-ness” and “urgent-ness” that comes with work are a completely 100% man-made concept.
Yes, regular people like you and me made these concepts up and impose it like it is a matter of life or death. Unfortunately, a lot of entrepreneurs take this quite literally.
Everything great in life happens in due time, and you see examples of this in the universe itself: human babies are born at around 9 months, cicadas live 5 to 6 weeks above ground before they expire, butterflies take 5 to 21 days to hatch; but only humans trigger urgency for their own benefit.
If you put your intention out that you wish to take some time off for your own self development, trust that everything else will move gracefully to make space for what you wish.
Lastly: Practice Self Awareness
Self care isn’t a one-size-fits-all practice. Everybody is going to require different amounts of self care and for different periods of time. It is important to always listen to what your body and mind is trying to tell you and write it down.
Self awareness is not rocket science. It is merely the act of introspection and analysing what your mind and body needs from you. Once you realise that there is a need for self care, it’s only a matter of taking action on it.
Thanks and remember to love yourself,