This post may contain affiliate links from the Amazon Associates Program and other Affiliate Networks. If you purchase anything through my affiliate links I receive commissions at no additional cost to you! Because of the integrity of The Illumine Blog's Brand Values, I only recommend products and services to my viewers that I stand behind.
Why Self-Care Will Improve Your Creative Business
If you are running your personal brand, you are your greatest asset for your business. In order to wear all the necessary hats on a daily basis, you must constantly replenish the energy you are depleting. That’s where effective self-care strategies can help.
No matter how self sacrificing you want to be in your roles, whether in your personal life as a wife and a mom or a friend, sooner or later you are going to be running on E. And unfortunately, no one is going to help you fuel your body and mind but you.
That is, until you learn to restore faster than you are depleting your energy or slow the process of emptying your resources to a controllable, preventable level altogether.
Your Greatest Resource
You’re body and mind can act as a vast resource, but only if handled with care. This means self-care needs to be an essential part of your daily routine. Yet, self-care online offers advice like pamper sessions at the spa.
Getting your nails done is not going to solve problems for your business but learning how to recognize when it’s time to refuel and protect yourself will.
As easy as it is to give into the knee jerk reaction, “I am just too busy” it’s more beneficial for you, both right now and for the sustainability of your personal life and business, to face any limiting beliefs that tell you, you don’t have what you need, and it’s too hard to get it.
Captive Your First Thought In The Morning To Set The Tone Of Your Day
When we captivate our thoughts we develop a say so in our actions beyond the circumstances.
Recently, a fellow entrepreneur reminded me of captivating your first thought in the morning. If you could tell your best self anything, what would you say? Now think that everyday when you first realize you’re awake.
But let’s be honest. It’s really difficult to start these self-care strategies if you are still feeling helpless and stuck, am I right? We’ll get there.
Nod Your Head If Any Of These👇🏾 Resonate With You.
On top of the energy of life’s normal demands, you’re striving to keep up with your schedule but nothing seems to be working.
In many cases, You feel you have no choice but to continue to carry out all the needed tasks.
You feel a constant pressure to keep going but know you aren’t going to maintain this long term. “It’s only temporary,” has become a coping mechanism. But before you know it, time is flying by, and this is becoming the new normal.
In many ways it doesn’t even feel like your schedule anymore. It’s almost like everything and everyone else has made it for you.
You are feeling stuck which leads you to believe you are inadequate because you can’t seem to manage all that you used to. Although, in many cases, life’s demands have seemed to pile themselves past your line of sight.
Other people seem to have this down. “Why is it so difficult for me?” You ask yourself.
You certainly want to be challenged but you don’t want to be overwhelmed.
And you can’t deny that sometimes under pressure somehow makes you feel important, offering a glimmer of hope for you. It’s just not enough to keep you going long term when all of the same problems remain. How can beast mode be so thrilling and go away so fast?
I wish the circumstances could change.
How can I make those fun, creative seasons flow and keep the unproductive, burn out times to a minimum?
I Have Some Good News For You
You are fully equipped to deal with what you need to, and I want to show you how you can recognize your power. You’ll be able to start the process of moving from desperation to abundance as well as recognize limiting beliefs holding you back to execute more effective self-care strategies.
And the good news is that it all boils down to one thing that’s often misconstrued & undervalued.
But first, I want to talk about what self-care means and why it’s important for your business.
Should You “Just Relax?”
The truth is that self-care is so much more than what it’s been coined, especially on the internet. I can’t tell you how many times I’ve been told: “just relax,” or “go get your nails done, you deserve it.”
Well honestly, I can’t go get my nails done if I’m having trouble paying rent; or the times that I can’t get out of my emotional funk because there are deeper issues going on in my daily routine.
Pampering myself is not really going to make me feel better deep down, because the anxiety I’m feeling is coming from problems that aren’t getting solved repeatedly.
A Different Way Of Thinking About Self Care
And more importantly, there should be ways to better manage the stress before it derails me completely. Is self-care recovering after total depletion or is it something more?
The point of self-care strategies is doing what’s best for you even when it takes more discipline than doing the alternative. It’s not about doing more things but doing more effective things to actually fix the deeper issues and protect you from severe prolonged stress.
Prioritize based on your ROI
So, if it’s not about recovering, it’s time to focus on what’s going to offer the greatest return on your time and energy investment for both your physical and emotional health in your business!
But before you think I’m just too mushy, I truly believe health is wealth, and in this case it means more dollars in your pocket because you’re able to achieve at higher, more creative levels and work more efficiently (time is money).
Learn to ask yourself how much time you are spending on any given activity. I’ve learned it’s incredibly eye opening to run a report on a screen monitoring app or even just jotting down how much time you are on a task for. Many entrepreneurs time themselves with free time trackers to increase productivity. (Search “free time tracker” to look for your favorite).
After you’ve shown yourself how much time you are actually spending on something, look at the actual metrics and value you are adding to your personal life and business by doing it.
Prioritize not by what you feel like doing but by what gives the greatest return. Think about your:
- Physical Priorities 2) Mental and Emotional Priorities 3) Business Priorities
When you are the face of your personal brand, you’re physical, mental, and emotional priorities need to come before your business priorities in order to sustain yourself to make a dependable income.
Honesty you know what feels the best for your body and what puts you in the right state of mind to be your best self. There’s always opportunities to upgrade how much water you drink or try that new diet or exercise to help your energy level etc. I’m not going to presume I know what’s best for your body; that’s something you have to develop by being more self aware. And I’m fully confident in you. 100%.
For me, I stay in tuned with my bodies needs on a daily basis remaining sensitive and flexible to them: To start, I supplement any depleted vitamins (which also helps increase energy); power naps are a necessity if I know I can’t go on any longer; I drink water, electrolytes, and my daily serving of vegetables; I make sure to balance gut bacteria and overall health by reducing added sugar intake to under 25 grams per day; as well as do yoga for more energy; and lymphatic drainage massages for decreased mental fog and increased antioxidants.
The more familiar you become with recognizing your bodies needs, the more you can start solving them.
Next comes your business priorities.
You’d be surprised at how many people get caught up in pinterest and instagram (both consuming and creating content) when they need to focus on what’s going to make their business money. I don’t know which method you use to make money, but I do know this:
In my experience, most people consume more content than they create as well as create more content than they promote. Just remind yourself that if you are not actively spending time getting the right eyeballs on your work, you’re wasting your time.
I want to challenge you with something I’ve been working on myself; try to start consuming less content and create more quality content (and promoting it more consistently).
Although your creative business is undoubtedly made up of multiple facets to get you where you need to be, spend the most energy in your most productive time frames turning an actual profit.
Overall, you want to make sure you are physically and mentally in the best position to unlock your potential when growing your business.
Isn’t It Just Common Sense?
You’re probably thinking, “why would people not do what they need to help themselves?” But I want you to think about how that plays out in normal life. Most people will go for the quick pay off before they will invest in something they can benefit from long term (meaning not right away).
The lack of nutrition, the all-nighters, the excess of anything but true quality of life; What if this actually takes you down a dead end road?
You’d think that would just be common sense, but how about all those times your body has said, “enough,” and you kept going anyways? There are countless examples–we all do it.
However, exhaustion and severe physical and emotional stress are not lanes to stay in. And yet many operate in a constant state of survival because they feel they have to. If you’re moving too fast to get out of the assembly line, it’s time to change your lifestyle to take care of your deeper needs.
Your Business Is A Reflection Of You
While running your own business offers limitless opportunities, one being higher earning potential, it is undeniably taxing on physical and mental health. This is because the burdens of an entire team rest on only your shoulders until you have the capacity to hire help.
More so, developing a personal brand is more taxing because it’s directly tied to your personal life and especially mental health.
For those who have been doing this for any length of time, I can hear you over there yelling “PREACH IT!”
Still, the benefits you reap only work in tandem with your commitment to your business. And operating from a constant state of burnout will end up squandering the opportunities your business has to offer.
Sustainability, being the end goal, requires more than everyday survival techniques to move closer to an abundance mindset.
Are You On The Right Path?
The reason these questions are so important is because we’re on the road to freedom and taking back the control in our lives to achieve what we never thought possible.
But you can’t get there if you are just setting up more distractions for yourself.
What Self Care Is Not
It’s not a personal reward for doing a good job
Or blowing off some steam or doing something fun because “you deserve it”
It’s not taking rest after overworking yourself
This is because it’s neither an “extra” nor is it nursing yourself back to health after you’ve completely exhausted all of your personal resources.
Self care is basic, preventative measures to sustain your physical, emotional, and mental health.
What Do You Think Impacts You The Most?
Your biggest contributor is most likely your environment.
If you planted a flower in a field of radioactive soil, would you angrily expect it to just try harder to grow? God, what a weak plant! You just need to keep pushing, right? Wrong.
Of course you wouldn’t do that. The environment wasn’t suitable for growth. So why do you expect yourself to succeed when you are not in a position to?
What Does A Toxic Environment Look Like?
Just because an environment seems nice, doesn’t mean it’s an environment your business can grow in. If you can’t get past the distractions and limitations despite personal development, it’s most likely a toxic work environment.
You make thousands of decisions everyday and through those decisions comes your reality.
Your greatest power is the ability to create the life that you want, which has a great deal to do with the environment. But sometimes things are truly out of our power after we’ve tried everything. That usually means it’s time to go.
If where you are puts you under increased physical, mental, emotional stress, you need to transition. Most of these factors will involve other people, if I’m being honest. If you are finding that other people are the cause of your feeling stuck and you have tried positive thinking, k bye.
I know it’s hard, but you have to protect yourself. You don’t even have to burn bridges, either.
If you are a recovering alcoholic, you aren’t going to live at the party house, are you? The same goes for trying to sustain a healthier lifestyle. Sometimes you need to leave places and people behind. Good news; you can add new ones to your life!
It’s likely you will take a similar path of those you are interacting with because people do what they know. This is why joining other communities is essential. Sometimes, you are stuck in a less than ideal situation. If so, you need to get some big boundaries and fast.
Get Around People That Hold You Accountable & Encourage You
Communities Can Be A Breeding Ground for Innovation
When I couldn’t change the situation I was in, even though I tried many times, I decided to join many online communities which helped me learn my craft better and develop other connections with ambitious, successful people.
If you join a community of people, you can avoid falling into a pattern of feeling alone. These people are putting in the hard work with similar life situations: two jobs, kids, and trying to pursue their dreams at the same time.
Facebook is a great place for this because exclusive online groups can be a breeding ground for innovation and encouragement.
Whether it’s a specific accountability group, a closed group on facebook, or a group text, seeing how others work will help formulate how you should. It will foster ideas and also give you the opportunity to show your area of expertise.
Find Your Most Productive Times
This is a piece of advice circulating the creative world for good reason. But the overall message is recognizing how you learn best. You should definitely treat yourself with a quick nap later on, a movie, or a visit from her friend to take a break and remind yourself of the freedom of working for yourself.
Just make sure you are not treating yourself too often before you have accomplished enough to create a sustainable income. This is where finding your most productive times comes in.
I’ll be completely honest, finding my most productive times has been a challenge. It doesn’t always come natural to everyone.
I hated getting up early, rushing around to the 9-5 that I naturally thought my time as a business owner meant sleeping in and starting later in the day.
Despite wanting to sleep in, I learned I liked getting a good chunk of work done before lunch. As long as I don’t go to bed too late, I wake up naturally refreshed earlier in the morning and ready to start my day.
If I sluggishly deign to wake up and drag things on, I end up in a horrible funk, ruining the day. And, I can’t deny that my most productive times are in fact, in the morning.
However, I have to take a break in the afternoon, because I become a zombie. Especially those nights I don’t get any kind of sleep at all, I know the next day will suffer. But I do promise myself to get back up and continue working in the afternoon and evening if I need to.
I sometimes go through periods of severe sluggishness due to depleted B vitamins in my system, electrolyte deficiencies I can’t seem to shake, and insomnia. If I’m awake but completely sluggish, instead of giving in every time to laying down, I will at least spend that time listening to a podcast or getting further education in my field; because I can’t always create or keep going, but I can listen.
Set Realistic Goals
If you move at a slower pace, that’s okay! I personally have to take extra time to be thoughtful about what I’m producing. There isn’t a one size fits all life, make it yours.
And while it sounds nice to put 50 things on your to do list, sometimes you may only be able to do one thing in a day. Come up with goals that you wish to achieve in the day, week, month and start thinking ahead about where your business could go years down the road and execute it based on baby steps.
Benefits Of Self-Care Strategies For You
What I tell you isn’t the important part, it’s why I tell you. The reason following these strategies of self is essential is because of what it means for your quality of life.
It means slower living and more control of your schedule. This controls flexibility for more self-care. Finally a cycle of something good.
Let’s be honest, tomorrow’s troubles are always going to be there, but you’ll feel less anxiety and more confidence in your lifestyle choices. This allows you to focus more on what you’re passionate about than what you’re surviving on.
Mastery over your daily tasks in your business means you can create quality content more.
You’ll be able to reach your goals without backtracking to make up lost time. And we all know time is money, especially when you work for yourself.
You’ll be able to push through the productive times in with your goals like you know you can.
It will nurture your creative energy.
And you’ll become a friend to your body to work for yourself rather than against.
Developing Habits; Why It’s Important
In the beginning of my entrepreneurial journey, I realized how many bad habits I created for myself just for the sake of seeking comfort. Listen, if your personal life is going up in flames and emotional health is suffering, your business will suffer too, because it’s a reflection of you.
I don’t want roadblocks to derail your mission and true passion. I don’t want your beginning to already be the beginning of the end.
Every time I tell myself it’s ok not to do what I set out to do, because I am distracted or otherwise giving in, I develop worse habits. It’s so not easy to make the more disciplined choice over the easier one, but what is going to yield better results in the long run.
Just because you don’t like the structure of your previous job or even the idea of a 9-5 doesn’t mean you’ll thrive with no structure at all
Habits are the vehicle we drive from present to future. They dictate how we spend our time, which is how we end up spending our life determining who we ultimately become.
What It’s Like To Be Stuck In Bad Habits
I felt like I let myself down over and over. Frustrated beyond personal doubt and outside negativity, these habits that made me sink deeper into the feeling that I couldn’t do it.
Where’s my leap of faith, excitement and determination now? Ultimately I kept fighting because I knew I wanted to reach my goal with every fiber of my being.
I took a chance on myself and now it’s time to start making myself believe.
It’s not about showing up like someone else; I know they can do it. They proven that much already. Knowing deep in my gut that I was meant for more, I took a chance and now I need to prove to myself that I’m right–I can do it.
That excitement I feel for my business, I feel for you too. I passionately believe that you can reach the goals you want to, and not just because I say so. Maybe you have a large support system or maybe have none at all, but the biggest believer you need to focus on in your life is you.
You’re strong because you’ve had to be and you survived a hell of a lot. But you have an incredible chance to be what you want now, not because you have to be but because you get to be.
I actually care about your journey: drop me a line email@example.com to share what you’ve been going through with your business and your biggest win.
What has been the most helpful tip you have learned working from home? Comment below!