Self care for entrepreneurs is essential. It’s easy to put off basic human needs like sleeping and socializing when we have our minds set on running a business. Last month I wrote about the importance of setting goals and sticking to them. Today I want to remind everyone that you still have to take care of your self.

When I say self care I mean taking care of your basic physical and mental health. It can seem like taking time away from your work will only hinder your business, however the less stressed you are the better you will perform, in both creativity and efficiency.

Physical Needs

There are lots of little things you can do while working to de-stress and make your life easier. When you feel overwhelmed take a moment to ask yourself a few questions. When was the last time you ate? Or took a break? Taking a five minute break and some deep breaths helps you reset and recharge. Refuel yourself with food and water. How are you going to make your next big goal if you’re running on empty? Your brain needs hydration to function properly.

Speaking of brain function, sleep is an essential part of self care for entrepreneurs. This is probably the basic need we sacrifice the most. Sleep affects mental and physical health including the cardiovascular system. The last thing busy, stressed out entrepreneurs need is higher blood pressure! Just like drinking and eating, sleeping will improve your work rather than hinder it.

Psychological Needs

Humans need to have more than our physical needs met to feel happy and fulfilled. Following our passions can give us purpose and satisfaction, but that doesn’t mean that we have to give up everything else. Maybe running your own gallery is your dream, but that doesn’t mean you can’t still pursue other interests.

Read a book, join an ultimate Frisbee league, compete in weekly bar trivia with your friends. Give yourself permission to have fun and be entertained. Make room for your family and friends in your schedule. Humans are social, curious, fun-loving creatures. In my opinion having fun is even better for your mental health than sleep or water*.

*I am in no way qualified to say this.

Now get out there and take care of yourself! For your sake, as well as your business’s.