pile of stones in water.

Do you agree that as a business owner, wellbeing is crucial? Or do you think it stands alone, separate from your business? What do you think?

My coaching clients come for 1:1 sessions because they are confused and can’t see how to move forward. They’re frustrated, and looking to gain focus and clarity on their business and on how they can get things done. They want to move forward. To make things happen. But try as they might, they keep going round in circles, procrastinating, putting off and feeling guilty about it all.

What we often deduce in the first session is that there is time, but it’s just not being managed well. Often that comes from not having a plan – so gaining that focus and clarity is much needed!

Start with good habits.

One important thing that we also cover in this first session is how they are looking after themselves. Wellbeing is something that can come very low down the list of priorities for small business owners. But, it is one of the most important things that need to be factored in at this point.

Hurtling ahead with your business and leaving the wellbeing until later can spell huge problems down the line. And embedded habits really do take time to unpick and re-do in a different way.

Common wellbeing challenges.

So what are the most common challenges I hear about from clients when it comes to looking after their wellbeing, and how does that tie in with everything I mentioned above? 

There are three main challenges that crop up again and again. So let’s talk about those, and how to get around them.

1. I don’t have time.

As stated above, this is often said and thought. The more we put that out there, the more we believe it. But it can be overcome with some precise and meticulous time management. 

Now, that might sound dull, but I love the phrase “discipline equals freedom” and I think it absolutely applies in this case. The more thorough you are with your planning, commiting to timescales and length of project tasks, the more organised you will feel, and can actually end up feeling as though you’ve gained time. Why? Because all that time you spent wasting, worrying what to do next, or procrastinating and not getting it done, you’ve gifted back to yourself by following a structure.

You can then prioritise something for your wellbeing and make it a part of your day – just as important as getting those work tasks done. Remember too, that doesn’t have to be long. I could be a 20 minute walk, run or workout. It could be a 10 minute yoga or meditation. It could meeting with a friend to talk and get away from work for half an hour. The point is, being structured can win you time, and that in turn can allow to focus on you.

2. I feel guilty doing things for myself.

My clients say this over and over again. As a coach, I can’t stress enough how important looking after yourself is. Wellbeing is crucial to success, and that most definitely should not make you feel guilty!

If you get started on point number 1, and you know you are making the best use of your time to push you forward, there’s no reason why some well placed slots cannot be carved out for you. 

Guilt doesn’t have a place here. It will just hold you back and could contribute to you not performing well because you’re worn out.

3. I can’t afford it.

Many small business owners are working on a shoestring budget. Consequently, they think they can’t afford to prioritise wellbeing, as the focus is on the financial. Whilst we can all see the logic in this, it’s good to know that wellbeing doesn’t need to cost a penny. 

Some of my favourite ways of looking after my own health and wellbeing are either free or extremely low cost. They include going for a walk; working out at home for 20 minutes; being mindful whilst cooking or working on my bullet journal, and reading. Crucially, I also meet a friend once a week to chat and let go of the the “to do list” for an hour. So good for the soul!

Looking at these things more closely, you can see how they all go together. Wellbeing certainly is crucial when you run a business.

It’s worth taking some time to think about what the challenges are for you in terms of fitting in things that are good for your wellbeing. Make a list so you know what things you like to do. Then when you are getting planned and organised for the week ahead, ensure there’s something from that list in your diary every day! A great way to ensure this happens is to have a colour coded system in your planner and have a separate colour for wellbeing.

We would love to know if you have particular challenges to fitting in these things. Or if you’ve found great ways to combat that and are now brilliant and managing your own wellbeing!