Back when I decided that working for myself as a freelance writer would allow me a lot of freedom, I quickly learned that running a business brings with it a lot of stress (and little freedom). The idea of working from your home office sounds appealing until you realize you are working more hours than you had been when someone employed you.

The Coronavirus pandemic forced many to work from home under various circumstances. As restrictions were lifted, some were given the option to work in the office or remain at home.

Working from home has a lot of challenges, including distractions that affect your focus and productivity. And if you are running a business while working from a home office, you have an additional set of challenges.

All of which puts your health on the back seat if you are not careful.

Whether you work from a home office or are in the corporate office, if you run a business, self-care is imperative for the health of your business.

How so?


Self-care and your business

When we fly, the flight attendants give us instructions that when we are in an emergency, to put our safety mask on first, before we assist our child or whoever is with us. That is because unless we help ourselves, we are useless to anyone else.

Well, the same is true for our business. If we want our business to be healthy, we have to maintain our health. If we are irritable, stressed, exhausted, and plain miserable, it is only a matter of time before our business — and employees — reflect our behaviors. And the business will suffer.

Burnout will soon follow, and now you cannot run your business.

It is important to stay focused on our work, but our mind and body must be healthy. We need to be balanced to fulfill our multiple responsibilities.

What are some ways you can maintain a healthy balance for you — and your business — to thrive?


10 Self-care tips to add to your routine

While it would be great if we could take a month’s vacation every couple of months, that is not a reasonable solution. But there are a few things we can do to maintain our health, including our sanity, until our next vacation.

(1) Keep set hours. Maintain a reasonable schedule, but most important, shut down and leave your office after your workday. Remember: you have a life outside of work.

(2) Take allotted breaks. Lunch, coffee, and afternoon breaks help you recharge. Don’t skimp on them. Take at least 15 minutes to step away from your work.

(3) Exercise. Sitting all day is not healthy physically, mentally, or psychologically. Take 15 to 60 minutes to move, especially to stretch. Exercise 4 to 5 times per week.

(4) Recreation improves your mood, especially if you head outdoors. Get fresh air. Walk, walk the dog, visit a museum — whatever it takes to get you away from your work.

(5) Sleep. Ah, sweet sleep, especially when we get our needed 7 to 9 hours per night. Lack of sleep affects our mood, our cognitive behavior and thinking ability. Experts tell us not to skimp on this important health routine.

(6) Monitor your nutrition and dietary habits. It is too easy to grab a bag of something unhealthy from our pantry and munch at our desk, but that catches up to us. Plan your snacks and meals and drink a lot of water.

(7) Include human interaction. While it’s great to interact with our colleagues, we need to spend time with friends and family on a regular basis. Step away from the computer and your phone and have in-person conversations.

(8) Listen to your body. Our bodies have an amazing ability to shut down after plenty of warning. Do not ignore the signals your body is giving you. Whether this means you need a break, rest or see a doctor, your body is telling you something. Listen to it.

(9) Organize yourself. Some people brag about working in their pajamas all day. Don’t do it. This pattern can drag us down. Dressing appropriately, focusing on our hygiene, affects us psychologically and physically. It also boosts our confidence and therefore, our productivity.

(10) Organize your office. We work better when we are not surrounded by chaos. Organize your office space at the end of each workday so you can start fresh in the morning.


Your best self and your business

Putting our health first is not selfish, it is smart. If we are not healthy, we are not able to effectively run our business.

Each person is unique and therefore, each schedule, recreation aspect, and dietary lifestyle will be different. Find what works for you to keep you healthy and focused and stick with it.

Consider keeping a journal to jot down your thoughts and reflections to maintain your emotional health as well. Journaling is a great way to keep our creative juices flowing while venting when we need to!

Maintaining a healthy balance is not only wise, but it can be done, if you are determined to be your best self.

Whether you work from a home office or are in the corporate office, if you run a business, self-care is imperative for the health of your business. If we want our business to be healthy, it is essential to maintain our health.

(Photo by Anastasia Shuraeva by Pexels)

This article’s information was taken, in part, from the e-book: “Working from Home Self-care Planner,” available in the store. The e-book gives a deeper dive into the above tips; it has a daily self-care checklist; weekly planner; and daily journal pages to inspire your creativity and reflections.