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Dealing with anxiety can be debilitating. When running a business, anxiety can be a huge deal breaker in terms of success and overall happiness with your work.
I have dealt with anxiety for as long as I can remember and it affects your entire life. What’s even scarier is when you are running a business and you get anxiety about getting anxiety! There can be a constant fear of when that big episode of anxiety is going to hit and destroy all the work you have put into your business.
Through the years I have put together a three-point plan for running a business while dealing with anxiety.
.1. ACKNOWLEDGEMENT //
Know that anxiety is a part of you.
I could go on about the ways anxiety has actually helped in the past. But, it has also hindered me. The fear of what anxiety could do to my business (and other aspects of my life) has made it imperative for me to acknowledge my anxiety ALL OF THE TIME. No matter what I am doing, I acknowledge the anxiety is a part of me and affects my reactions to situations.
.2. PLAN //
I know that I will eventually feel overwhelmingly anxious about anything at any time. So, I make sure to have a solid, simple plan in place that will keep me in check of what I need to get done on a daily basis.
I keep my work schedule simple. One task per day that needs to get done, like a blog post, recording a video, editing, posting, etc. Some days I do extra work and some days I don’t end up getting done what I need to. But, when there is only one task per day I don’t really miss that much if I need to take a day for myself.
When I used to have a huge to-do list, it meant I was super productive most days, but I could easily fall far behind by missing one day and that would send me into a tailspin of anxiety and second guessing my entrepreneurial spirit.
I also keep a long “to-do” list that I look at each day and whatever I can tick off, I do. If something HAS to get done then it gets scheduled in my agenda to be completed by a certain date.
.3. SUPPORT //
I think this is the most important part of my three-step plan. I used to think I could handle everything on my own. When I worked as an employee I would take sick days as mental health days so I could recoup my body and mind. But as an entrepreneur, I don’t get the luxury of sick days for true sickness or for mental health support. So now, more than ever, it’s important for those around me to understand my anxiety and that sometimes I can feel overwhelmed by the simplest of tasks.
Obviously, not everyone understands that just getting out of bed and taking a shower can be so overwhelming. But, I was surprised by how many people could understand from experience or from the goodness of their hearts that sometimes I need extra time to get tasks done.
You can only be who you are. It’s so much more draining to pretend everything is fine than to admit that you need support.
Mental health is much more important than getting every single business task done and completed.
It’s time to stop putting our business first. When we are happy and healthy, mentally and physically, we are much more productive!
How do you deal with your anxiety? Please share in the comments!
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