Invest in Your Self Care and Reap Strong ROI

by Certified Coach Alissa Gauger, MBA

Something that is in almost every business owner's blind spot can make or break you and your practice. Would it surprise you to know that your business operates as a bright shiny mirror reflecting back the way you treat yourself, feel and care for your body?

Most entrepreneurs, especially early on, buy into these myths: -I have to work all of the time to make it. -Taking care of my mind and body has to come last. -I don't have time to maintain relationships. -I can't afford to pay for luxuries like healthy food and gym memberships right now.

I am guilty of it myself. For years when I was employed in marketing I had maintained a healthy weight. When I opened my coaching practice more than five years ago I didn't think I had the time or energy to maintain my good habits. I gained a lot of weight and with it lost the energy I needed to thrive. This year I finally removed all of the "entrepreneur pounds" I had put on and my business has never been stronger.

While you are dreaming big and striving to crush it, I know firsthand how easy it is to back burner your needs. But what I can tell you from the front lines (right alongside you!) might surprise you. Spending the time to shop for and prepare healthy foods and taking care of my mind and body has been nothing but profitable.

Try it for yourself. I believe that entrepreneurs have a special line item on their "position description" that is "take as good of care of yourself as you do of your clients and business." If you do this, I believe you will absolutely make back the time and money and then some.

When you look and feel good, you do better work. Your clients will reflect your vitality. Start small and add healthy habits where you can.

Ideas include:

-Stock your environment with whole, fresh food that you really enjoy (buy a mini fridge if that helps).

-Prep your healthy food in the right portions for the entire week each weekend. -Invest in a stand up desk and use an activity tracker to reduce your overall sedentary habits. Aim for 10,000 steps a day.

-Take short breaks to drink water, take deep breaths and think about gratitude.

-Take mental breaks from your electronic devices.

-Make a point of getting the right amount of sleep for you.

-Get out and see your friends and family.

The payoff is that when you return to building your empire, you will have fresh ideas, great energy and the genuine enthusiasm to live a thriving lifestyle. Live it to give it!

Coaching Tip Starting new, healthy habits works better when done a little bit at a time. This is the exact opposite of what most of us do! Start by adding to your daily steps until you reach your goal. Then add in a short workout or two--it might be running up and down the steps or doing some push-ups in the beginning.