It was a typical day. I had orders to complete, emails to answer, and needed to finalize a recipe. Things seemed pretty clear cut and the day should have been a breeze. But it wasn’t! Instead, I found myself taking longer than usual to respond to emails, making an abnormal amount of trips to the store for supplies and as for the recipe….don’t ask!
By the end of the day I was frustrated by my lack of productivity and just I wanted to immerse myself in my occasional guilty pleasure of reality television. Then something clicked! I realized that at the height of my mental crash it was time for dinner! My brain had been programmed to go haywire if I didn’t eat at certain times of the day.
Our typical health and business routines are formed habitually. In “The Power of Habit”, Charles Duhigg attributes that our health and business habits influence over 40% of our daily decision making. This goes to show that health is an essential aspect of business success. Below are 10 healthy habits that the African‐American female entrepreneurs can participate in to cultivate both.
- Stick to a Schedule – This monotonous concept will help to keep you organized and ready for the day ahead. One thing to do is to populate your planner with your scheduled meetings and events. This way, you can effectively manage the things that come up during the week with ease. Keeping a day planner or digital calendar helps to make your to‐do lists run smoothly and weeks operate with minimal hassles.
- Sleep More – Being an entrepreneur is time consuming. Late nights and early mornings are the norm. With that in mind, it is very important to be sure to get the proper rest that your body needs. Whether you’re an early bird or a night owl, it is important that your body gets the 7-8 hours of rest that it needs to function.
- Work Out and Eat Healthy – Consuming bad foods on a consistent basis will eventually run down your body, mind, and overall well-being. You can combat this by developing a schedule that includes a workout plan and eliminating fast foods from your diet and replacing them with more natural and organic foods. Keeping fruits, veggies and nuts handy is a better alternative than the junk food. This will slow down your metabolism and decrease your energy levels leaving you tired and unable to focus easily.
- Constantly Invest in your Business – You must invest in your craft! Whether is in the form of time, money or simply jotting down random ideas as they appear so that you don’t forget them for later use. The key is to always keep your business on your mind and by doing this you strengthen your thoughts and innately focus on developing your business. You are your business, after all…
- Always Be Punctual – Punctuality is a very important character trait to have. When you are on time delivering your product or service, you send the message that you are serious and you respect time — the clients and yours. Always be punctual. In fact, be early!!
- Have someone to hold accountable – This someone can be a friend, family member, spouse, mentor, business partner, or even your social media following! If you have a serious goal you want to reach, share it with others and tell them to hold you to it. This will help to keep you on your toes as the trustworthy person or persons will be there to support you and help you stay on task.
- Consistency – A true lesson in business in being consistent in your business practices. For example, being strict about email correspondence as it pertains to business inquiries. Allowing inquiring individuals to take up too much of your social media private messages or text messages makes for a cesspool of confusion. Dictating up front that you only handle business inquiries via email keeps a healthy documentation of everything should an issue ever arise. Your consistence makes you more organized and allows clients to perceive you as the trustworthy professional you are.
- Positive Thinking – As an entrepreneurial woman of color in a male dominant society, it is very easy to become discouraged and think negatively due to stress and other hardships that can arise in various stages of business. If you are a spiritual person, prayer can help to re‐center your focus on what you are trying to achieve. Meditation and positive thinking helps to redirect your focus while increasing your motivation and drive.
- Support other women owned small businesses – Being female entrepreneurs is something akin to a sisterhood. When we support each other, we uplift one another. Support, encourage, and uplift your fellow black woman small business owner! The favor will be returned tenfold!
- Balance – All things require balance. When you are so focused on your business and your health, you also run the risk of leaving out essential activities with the ones you love and care for most. Making time for the things you enjoy with the people you love, such as a girl’s night, family outing or weekly date night is just as important as the growth of your business. It is extremely important to be able to tackle all facets of your life with the same passion and fervor as you do your career.
Developing healthy habits will help to propel your business! Maintaining your health will keep a happy medium in your life overall.