Growing up, my parents shielded me from a lot. They rarely talked about not having enough money to pay the bills or put food on the table. My brothers and I did not heard about stressful interactions with co-workers or past due timelines.
When I became a mom, I learned how much life can weigh on your shoulders. Helping my own children with homework, ensuring they lived in a clean home , preparing meals and coaching them on day to day life choices took a lot of energy. I worked outside of the home, so I also had to be careful not to bring home stress from my job.
Someone told me once that one of the best things we can do is to care for ourselves first. When we put loving ourselves first, we can then care for others. I held on to that thinking.
This advice reminds me of the safety briefings I hear before taking off when flying: “Always put your mask on first, before helping others“. I remember telling my Dad once, “No way. I’m helping my baby first . . . I don’t want him to die.” My Dad asked quietly, “What if you die before you can save him?”
We can apply that same wisdom to our work as business owners.
Owning and managing is business is hard. You are the one who makes every major decision. You are accountable for every action your team members take and interaction they have with your customers, vendors and employees. As a business owner it may feel like you have to have all the answers.
The truth is, we have to preserve ourselves.
We must conserve time and available energy so we can be ready. Sometimes that means saying no. I’m heading out for an impromptu overnight camping trip this weekend. To do so, I’ll need to cancel some meetings and leave early Friday, but I’ll be better equipped to be my best self when I show up for my team and our clients on Monday morning.
Are you making room to be the best leader and business owner you can be? What kind of self love practices help you quiet the noise?