For a lot of small business owners especially women owned small business owners, the idea of self-care and time management to accommodate self-care seems to be such a farfetched idea and unrealistic.
But if you don’t exercise your self-care muscle, burnout will catch up with you.
The idea of selfcare is easily misunderstood as material things, things that require you to switch off and then stress about switching off…
But it the ultimate goal of self-care is to remind our body and mind that you are not a machine and that you appreciate the work they put in, so you will consciously work with them to elevate your earthly experience, not just for you but for everyone around you too.
In my journey of self-care journey as an entrepreneur, mom and home maker, nothing has quite panned out in the conventional idea of self-care. My self-care is not only in rewarding myself with a bubble bath or a glass of wine whilst I Netflix and chill but setting myself up for a better state of mind and making my day to day easier to navigate.
Here are the things that aid my self-care:
- A Daily Routine
A daily routine that starts with a stretch, a slow start, some morning light and a cup of good coffee and then looking at my daily schedule is important. I was in boarding school most of my high school life, and one habit that help me survive the stress of high school (yes it was stressful) and the first team netball, A-student and super achiever demands, was a tight schedule where I knew what was coming next.
- Understanding My Triggers
I remember in high school; I had gotten a terrible mark for a subject test and I remember being so low and seeing this as such a setback. It affected my timetable as I got back to the dorm after lunch and moped myself into a nap that had me almost miss netball practise.
In my adult life, I know that when I know my triggers and can feel their effects, I know to seek way to up my energy (a yoga session or a walk on the treadmill or even a meditation/breathwork session) and then flow back into my day.
Sometimes by starting my day with a good meditation session, it helps manage these lows that may come as I allow them to flow through me.
- Setting Up A Flow To Get Myself Started
One thing that gets me back into a complete slump and will absolutely prevent me from getting started, is starting with admin in the morning. I know for sure if I do this, I will be buried in admin ALL DAY. So, I leave this for last in my day. I tackle my admin for a time when no one can disturb me or distract me.
So, I start with what flows easily first in my day; for me it’s the content creation, interacting with my audience and Art of Superwoman customers and ideating.
- Asking For Help And Delegating
The important thing that I learnt when it came to delegating and asking for help, was that as an entrepreneur it is extremely important to exercise this muscle.
Asking for help and delegating is an ongoing exercise and one that is extremely undermined in my opinion.
When you are both a mom and an entrepreneur, it is very important to pay attention to how you ask for help, how you delegate, how you plan and your decisiveness.
There is nothing worse than an indecisive boss who delegates to you. The same applies in your household, with your children and in your work.
In order to serve you better, people need and want decisiveness. On the Art of Balance Week 3 Newsletter, I quote Phathu Makwarela, whom I have previously interviewed on our The Sit Down platform, and he says, “I have realised that when you lead a team of people, people want clarity. People want decisive decisions, then they will be able to serve you better.”
Realise that we are not island and cannot grow or become if we are not seeking out help and in so doing, getting others to add value to your life journey.
The kind of things I delegate in my personal life are:
- The cooking on some days – Some days I toss it into my Instant Pot
- The cleaning
- The caring for my children
- Our travel arrangements and sometimes dinner arrangements for date night
In my work life (to name a few):
- The management of my business
- Management of my diary and schedule
- Bookkeeping and accounts
- Day-to-day online store management
- Customer support
I realise that though it is important for me to get involved in all my business is and the many pairs of heels I wear, it is also important for me to remain sane. And delegating helps me stay sane.
And in order to grow, one needs to first be good at what they do. I can’t be good at everything if I’m doing everything myself. So as I get good at one aspect of my business, I teach someone and they take over that aspect.
- Time Management
Time management is an important part of my self-care and I mentioned earlier that as a boarder, I leaned onto a schedule for structure, routine and peak performance.
I slacked a lot at my time management in my adult years, using the fact that I have children as an excuse and this affected my performance. And once people view you as sloppy, there’s honestly no going back.
So managing my time and my daily flow is very important. If it isn’t in my diary and isn’t written down, it will not be done. That’s my philosophy.
So when I commit to something, I slot it into my COZI App and I know it’s part of my flow for that day or week. This also helps with that niggly feeling of “I should be doing something but I’m not sure what it is.”
It is also important to remember that your own self-care may not look like someone else’s and may need day to day work. It may be a decision you make but it takes practise and may need you to be flexible. Always make provision for life changes and some new opportunities that may come up.
As an entrepreneur and mom, it’s important to be light on my feet and realise that not all days are the same.
That reminds me, today I have to help a 9 year old with a school project on natural disasters, wish I could delegate that! Instead it’s scheduled.
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