Owning your own business can bring you a great sense of pride and enjoyment. But it can also bring with it a lot of stress and overwhelm.
Learning how to recognize the overwhelm before it gets out of hand is an important quality to have. It will allow you to deal with the stress head on, so that you can get back to what’s important - running your business.
How do you recognize overwhelm?
Learning to recognize feelings of stress and overwhelm at the start can really help you nip it in the bud, so to speak. Stress is a physical and emotional response to a situation. The situation can be both good and bad. The body doesn’t care, it just reacts! Everyone responds differently, so it’s important to recognize how you react so you can learn to cope with it better.
Symptoms of Stress
· Loss of appetite
· Loss of energy
· Loss of focus
· Muscle tension
As you can see, all of the symptoms of stress will have a negative impact on your business and your health. Learning to be more self-aware will help you attack the cause of the stress head on. Start by making a list of symptoms you have when you are stressed. Learn to recognize these in yourself. For example, if you feel a headache coming on, stop and consider it could be a stress headache. Stop to think what is making you stressed?
Business owners have legitimate reasons for feeling stressed
As a business owner, you will have to learn to cope with stress. Some of the stress and overwhelm will stem from having too many balls in the air, not realizing how long tasks will really take, not having enough time to complete those tasks, and not having enough help.
As a business owner, you will always have ideas running around in your head and feel like you don’t have enough time or resources to get it all done. Creating processes and flows for these ideas will help control that overwhelm. (We’ll get to that in a minute).
Sometimes we get so caught up in the “weeds” of our business we forget to take the time to step back and remember the big picture. It’s important to remind yourself of why you started, what is your one big goal, and what tasks can you do to help you get there.
Learning new ways to help you cope with stress properly will benefit not only you, but your health, and your business. You may have to try different ways until you find what works best for you. What may work for me, for example, may not work for everyone.
Tips to manage the overwhelm
Delegate. Sometimes, learning to let go of certain tasks can be hard. It’s tough to trust someone else to do a task as good as you. But by hiring the right person with the right skills, you’ll be able to hand over tasks that will allow you to do the things that will ultimately grow your business. In some cases, delegating may not even involve another person, but learning to schedule and streamline certain processes. Learning ways to automate will save you a lot of time and stress.
Stop overscheduling. It’s important not to overschedule your day. This can happen for many reasons, one of which is not realizing how long tasks will take. If you are constantly underestimating the time it takes to complete tasks, you won’t ever be able to finish on time. It’s important to be aware of how long it takes to complete certain tasks and schedule them accordingly.
Setting realistic priorities and goals. Start each day by making a realistic plan of what you can get accomplished. Keeping your big goal in mind, think of no more than 3 things that can help you reach that goal quicker. Focus on working through those 3 main priorities for that day.
Set daily breaks. Taking scheduled, daily breaks will help clear your mind and give you fresh perspective when you get back to work. Try getting some fresh air, listen to music, go for a walk, or grab some coffee.
Change up your scenery. Instead of staying inside at your desk all day, change up where you work. Go to the library or a coffee shop. Or sit out on your porch if it’s a nice day. Sometimes changing your scenery can also change your perspective and get those creative juices flowing!
Owning your own business should be an exciting and rewarding endeavor. Learning to recognize your symptoms of stress and overwhelm will help you get back on track by using some of the tips we’ve discussed.