As I get a bit older (wow, I sound ancient for a 25 year old!) and now that I have kiddies around, I am realising more and more that it is impossible to run on empty.
You need fuel in the tank to run the engine – GOOD fuel if you really care about getting somewhere.
I used to think it was okay to push myself and just keep on working. We’ll sleep when we die, right? I sacrificed so much personal time and enjoyment for the sake of keeping clients happy or keeping up with my own marketing.
When you have a baby, everything changes. Suddenly, your allocation of personal time goes right down, along with your sleep. You find out that you cannot survive without the little things, like taking a few extra minutes to rest or showering by yourself occasionally. Throw a business into the mix and it can feel pretty impossible.
I am reminded of that analogy of being on a plane and needing oxygen. If you want to save your kid, put your own oxygen mask on first before you try to put theirs on. Maybe it goes against what we’re used to doing if we’re in the habit of sacrificing our own needs for the sake of others, but it makes complete sense from a logical point of view. Take care of yourself first so you can take care of others, including your business.
So what does this self-care or fuel look like?
I think it’s different for everyone.
For me, it’s about having time to myself regularly, ideally a few hours a week where I am alone. I use this time to breathe, think, paint my nails, catch up on the housework, brainstorm. I just enjoy the aloneness of it all and come out the other end recharged and ready to face my business (and babies!) again.
For some of my clients, I can imagine that this would be taking a boat out on the water every now and then, visiting family/friends for a BBQ and drink, going on regular holidays, and knocking off early on Fridays.
Whatever your self-care is, it’s important to make it a priority. Schedule it in if you have to.
You matter. You are worth it. Take the time for yourself.