By: Charlotte Gilkes and John Swanson
It’s not unusual for an entrepreneur to spend 12+ hours a day working, sometimes seven days a week. Even long after they’ve gone home, it is difficult to shut off their brain. Sound familiar?
Perhaps you are one of many business owners pouring in your blood, sweat, and tears, only to struggle bridging the gap between the work you put in and leveling up your business.
You might be surprised to know the problem could be a lack of prioritizing your own health and wellbeing. Sometimes the biggest problem for entrepreneurs is not work related at all, but a lack of self-care, which translates to the work environment. At bare minimum, lack of sleep, poor diet, and a shortage of exercise go hand-in-hand with low productivity.
John Swanson, CEO of Wendell and founder of the Online Coach Revolution program, understood this when he set out to help entrepreneurs change their mindset and place a priority on their own well-being as they create impactful businesses. He says:
People think business coaching is all about business. Wrong. When we work with a student, we actually start with how to increase their productivity, focus, energy, and overall health.
Let’s take a look at how your health and wellbeing as an entrepreneur impacts every area of your life, particularly your business and its destiny for success.
Begin by owning your choices so you can move forward with better ones.
Swanson begins his time with clients with what he refers to as the “three R’s,” which are: reflection, revolution, and revelation. He requires his clients to reflect on their successes and failures to find what is working and what is not. This is the first step to an evolution.
Reflection is so important is because it can help you own your decisions. Everything in life is a result of the choices you make. Swanson explains:
Health is a decision. Wealth is a decision. Success is a decision. The thing you wish you had is merely a lack of time making the right decision. Think. Plan. Act. It’s the simplest way to be a trailblazer.
To get started on a path down a healthier you, ask yourself the following questions:
- What is my routine like? Am I consistent?
- What does my physical activity look like for the week?
- What am I feeding my body?
- What excuses are circling in my head?
Reflection is about taking ownership of the bad habits you have created in order to get out of your own way and form good ones. Success in all areas of your life will begin and end with the right mindset. Swanson says:
The health of your bank account, your body, your relationships – each of these is directly connected to your routine and habits. In turn, your daily routine and habits can only be changed by learning new skills. And the ability to learn is solely impacted by your beliefs. If you aren’t working on taking extreme ownership for your life, good or bad, I have some hard truth for you – you’ll never change your bank account, body, or relationships. The mind is the hardest muscle to train, but it’s where every journey begins and ends.
Become the best version of yourself.
Being the best version of yourself is not exclusive to the office. Yes, you want to be the best entrepreneur, but you also want to be the best parent, the best friend, and you get the idea.
But life is busy and we lose focus, which is why our health plays such a key role in maintaining that concentration. When it comes to your physical health, keep in mind you are probably sitting behind a computer screen for hours on end. Our bodies were made to move and crave the exercise you are depriving it from receiving. Not to mention, exercise can be a great way to relieve some stress and clear your mind.
You also might not pay much attention to how food is affecting your mood and efficiency levels, but think back to one of your most productive days. What was the last meal you ate? Food is fuel for the brain and body and can give you the boost you need in the office to get your work done quickly.
And one of the biggest pitfalls of entrepreneurs? Lack of sleep. Please don’t forget to make sleep a priority. With a full night’s rest, your ability to pay attention to those important details and focus throughout the day will be on point. Swanson says:
Everyone is completely distracted today, floating somewhere between being a busy-body or just being lazy, but neither are going to cut it if your goal is massive success – in your business, your fitness goals, or your personal life. Business, laziness, productivity, success. All are a state of time. You have to reset.
How do you reset and find the secret to success? Try this:
- Do something for your health every day. Work out for 30 minutes, practice mediation, meal prep for the week.
- Do something that brings you happiness and be fully present. Take your kids to the park, meet your friends for dinner, or curl up with a good book.
- Do the highest priority tasks for the day. This will leave you feeling accomplished and motivated to continue checking off items from your to-do list.
Make time for those who matter most.
At the end of the day, you cannot forget to prioritize a healthy work-life balance. That’s why Swanson created a business model that allows entrepreneurs to reach success by working within the hours they choose. While he is fortunate to work with his wife every day, he still did not want to miss time at home with his children. He knows other entrepreneurs cannot get back that missed soccer game, date night, or family vacation.
When both your body and mind are healthier, you are more productive and no longer just busy. Your body and mind both play a crucial role in performing well both at work and at home. When you function well at work, you have more time and energy left when leaving the office.
This allows more quality time with those you love most and being present in each of those moments instead of checking your email or on the couch with your laptop open. Swanson ponders:
Ninety percent of individuals I come into contact with are busy, yet they fail to push progress forward. They feel as though they never have enough time and that often, life is very chaotic. And by no means is changing easy. But it comes down to how committed you are to your priorities. If you’re all in, then focus should be at the forefront of your development. Focus now on the things that matter so you can be present with those you love.
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Charlotte Gilkes is a marketing professional who helps identify strategies and techniques to attract customers, maximize profits, and grow market share.
John Swanson is the CEO of Wendell, a coaching company that focuses in the area of Mindset and Health. Previously, he was a professional athlete and the former CEO of Granite Games, Fast Factory Fitness, and Factory Forged. He has partnered with companies like Nike and Reebok and has recently been featured in Yahoo! Finance, Entrepreneur, and many others. Find out more here.