Our metal has certainly been tested this year. Many are fatigued and stressed juggling responsibilities, worries, and fear like they were part of the job description.
But this is not sustainable.
You may feel crushed by the weight of the world right now. Maybe your friends and family don’t quite understand what you’re going through because they aren’t a business owner. Perhaps you’ve created the perfect life on social media, and no one knows the struggles that make up your day and eat away at your confidence and security.
But your chamber of commerce does. They’ve been there. The chamber is full of business owners & professionals, and they know what you’re going through. Most people think about the business resources and networking they provide but forget that they are always looking out for businesses and the struggles of businesspeople. Being the voice of business also means understanding the internal hardships of business owners. The chamber’s vast business experience may help you feel more part of a tribe.
The chamber is also here to remind you that as a business owner, your skills, drive, and knowledge are critical to your business but so is your health and wellness.
All business owners need to hear these things, especially now:
- It is okay to put yourself in time out. Use this time to recharge or think about the direction of your business. You can’t do either of these things under pressure. You are not a diamond. Schedule time away, off the grid, even if only for an hour. Focus on one area that’s not working and how you might improve things. Then create an action plan and schedule your tactics that will get you to your goal. Or better yet, take that time and decompress by doing absolutely nothing.
- Trust your intuition but weigh all sides. Discuss it with people who have experience in the area or the things you are considering. That generally means not your spouse, nor your friends.
- Take the calculated risks. No risk, no growth.
- You can make a living doing anything if you take the right approach and the timing is right. Choose what you love, and you will have a more fulfilling career. Never choose safety as a career path because sometimes the safe path isn’t safe. And if that’s the only reason you chose it, you’re left with nothing.
- If you need help, ask. But you’ll be more successful if you ask the people who are able to help.
- “No” is an acceptable answer. No excuse (or reason) required.
- Timing is important but persistence usually pays off. Hang in there.
- You set your priorities. If you feel out of control, and someone else dictates everything for you, you have given them that power (that includes your kids and pets).
- Schedule time for “oxygen” moments that provide the breath that fuels the fire in your soul. Recharge with the care that you give your cell phone.
- Everyone is on their own path. If you don’t declare them as a dependent on your taxes or you can’t be held accountable for their actions in a court of law, respect their process and respect yours also.
- You can’t make everyone happy, but you can exhaust yourself trying. Pick what you’re good at, who it serves well, and do that. Don’t be a salad at McDonalds.
- You are always in control of how you respond to a situation even if you can’t control anything else.
- If it’s important to you, find a way. If it’s not, be honest about that with others and with yourself. Admit that it’s not on your life’s “strategic plan” and move on.
Remember, mental health and wellness are not luxuries. You deserve them. Just as you take care of the tools you need to conduct business, you need to take care of yourself.
Keep this list and refer to it. There’s nothing on here that isn’t common sense but sometimes you just need to hear it from someone else.
Christina R. Metcalf (formerly Green) is a marketer who enjoys using the power of story and refuses to believe meaningful copy can be written by bots. She helps chamber and small business professionals find the right words when they don’t have the time or interest to do so. Christina hates exclamation points and loves road trips. Say hi on Twitter or reach out on Facebook.