Recharge Yourself and You’ll Recharge Your Business 
 
We all know it makes sense to look after yourself and if you’re a business owner then even more so – we can imagine you nodding as you read this. But when you’re busy and your customers need you to deliver, you will work all hours to keep them happy and loyal. Good intentions fly out of the window and the next thing you know is that you’re exhausted and becoming less and less effective. Working yourself ragged is only sustainable for so long and eventually it will catch up with you one way or another. 
 
It used to be that an annual holiday was seen as the solution to resolve all the stress of 11 months and then you’d come back and throw yourself into it all over again. So what to do? 
 
The shift has been towards making balanced wellbeing a priority for every day alongside your other commitments. It’s no longer about heading for the gym and thrashing away for an hour. We’re talking about a holistic approach which covers all aspects of mental and physical health. There is a risk that it’s another time-consuming expense that becomes easy to drop once the initial enthusiasm wanes. Through trial and many errors (ours and others) we have learnt that baby steps work best so good new habits become a natural part of your day. 
 
Here are few pointers on aspects of lifestyle to think about and see if you can make a few micro-adjustments which can turn into a big difference. 
 
● Sleep 
Go to bed earlier and get up earlier. Those early hours when others are just stirring are a perfect time to take stock of the day and get so much underway. There is an efficiency in early day action that just can’t be beaten. It gives you clarity for the day ahead and makes it simpler to stop work at a reasonable time and have a personal life too. 
 
● Exercise outdoors 
We say outdoors because fresh air and changing seasons makes a much more interesting backdrop to exercise than an air-cooled gym. Also the outdoors is on your doorstep, so you start the moment you step out of the door. If you can’t stand the idea of couch to 5k then there is already Stroll to Stride 5k which is so much easier on your knees. 
 
● Eat well 
Think 80:20. If you’re eating well 80% of the time, the odd croissant is just an extra layer in the joy of eating. Eating well means simple foods as close to original state as possible, keep the sugar to minimum (that includes booze which is also full of sugar). Keep it fast, simple and easy with loads of vegetables in all the colours you can find (stir fries, four-minute egg noodles etc), because if it’s too complicated the lure of heat-up meals in plastic boxes will be hard to resist. 
 
● Turn wine into water 
Drinking is great when you’re having a party but not when it’s become an everyday event designed to switch off your stress or help you sleep. It does the opposite in fact. So give your liver a break and at least make sure there’s one water-only day for every day when you’ve enjoyed a glass of wine. You’ll relish the clearer head – always good for business! 
 
● Look after your gut 
Check out the supermarket shelves groaning with products full of live bacteria and probiotics and you’ll be aware that it’s a thing to look after your gut. It is even being called a second brain – we all know the phrase about your gut telling you something. If your gut is in bad shape it will disrupt your day and make you miserable, so it’s worth taking all the steps that will keep it in good shape - good sleep, exercise, good food and reduce stress etc. 
 
● Switch off devices 
Evidence is building up about the disruptive effects of devices, like when you’re sleeping, never mind the amount of time they take up as you scroll endlessly through news, social feeds and the rest. Switch them off and put them in a drawer during mealtimes and keep them out of your bedrooms. You don’t need to be on call 24 hours and it’s OK to set clear lines about when you are available. 
 
● Look after your friends 
Allow work to take over and the days can zoom by. Your friends don’t want to disturb you because you’re busy. But they might need you just like you need them. So don’t wait for an emergency to decide to spend time with friends. Spend good times regularly with them too because it’s good for your head and fun. 
 
● Kindness 
Which brings us to kindness, often underrated or given short shrift. It’s however an intrinsic part of caring for customers, friends and family. Offer kindness and it will carry you for miles and reward you well. 
 
● Good mental health 
We talked about looking after your gut so let’s look after your brain too. Give it a breather and stop stuffing jobs and to-do lists into it for at least a few minutes a day. There’s plenty out there to help you work out how to pause and briefly switch off the world. 
 
● Grow a garden 
You can grow your own vegetables although don’t expect to become self-sufficient unless you’ve got a small field. Even a handful of veg from a window box is a joy, along with a bunch of flowers you’ve grown. What’s to stop you having tomato plants in your work kitchen? Food, beauty, exercise and meditation all rolled into one activity. 
 
● Bring in help with work and with your home 
We would say this because it’s our job to help people who are too busy and getting clogged up with work. However when you get help even with just one task it makes an enormous difference. Book that cleaner and while you’re at it ask us how a VA could storm through that mountain of paperwork that’s holding you back. 
 
We as Virtual Assistants are as guilty as the rest about not holding on to good habits. So we’ll be making a commitment to our community of Pink Spaghetti Virtual Assistants and our clients to look after ourselves a bit better from now on too. 
 
And if you’d like to find out more about how we can help, we’re ready to answer all your questions. Click Here to contact us now. 
 
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