As business owners or budding entrepreneurs problem solving is part of our DNA, so coming up with ways to stay healthy and positive when our options are limited is imperative.
As I write this article we are five weeks into the lockdown, during the Covid-19 outbreak of 2020 and we are all feeling the pressure. The uncertainty around our future is something that weighs heavily on our minds and there has never been a more important time to look after our mental and physical health.
Finding ways to keep mentally and physically fit with no imposed routine is a lot more of an effort than usual, so I’ve put together some ideas to help motivate you. These activities are just as important when you are out of lockdown too, so there’s no reason not to form these habits now that will help you for the rest of your life.
“Finding ways to keep mentally and physically fit
with no imposed routine is a lot more
of an effort than usual”
1. Morning Routine: I’m a big fan of the Miracle Morning*, a great series of books that advocates and teaches how you can manage a routine that sets you up for the day ahead. The “Life Savers” are the six actions to take as you awake every day and are apparently the habits of most successful entrepreneurs that they studied.
• Silence – Meditation, prayer or focussed breathing, even for only 60 seconds will make a difference.
• Affirmations – Define your goals and repeat them out loud, I use an app called “Think Up” for this.
• Visualisation – Imagine yourself already having achieved this goals (vision board helps with this)
• Exercise – Get the blood following and heart rate up every day.
• Reading – Find inspiration through reading great books (like the Miracle Morning!).
• Scribing – Write in your journal, notepad your goals and important “to do’s”.
2. Find your space: I’ve written about this before but in a lockdown environment it may be challenging for you to find a space to call your own. Even if it’s temporary and makeshift, can you organise your space to feel motivating and comfortable. If you do have your own space, is it set up just how you like it with inspiring images, quotes, messages etc in your field of view?
3. Strength training: For the exercise part of your routine, find a way of adding resistance training to your programme. If you don’t have weights or resistance bands, press ups, squats, sit ups etc have served humanity well for centuries. In many recent studies weight training benefits us in so many ways other than just improving our strength and has proven links to longevity and increasing brain power!
4. Be focused: It’s easy to loose focus when you are trying to work with kids playing next to you or household activities going on all around you. Wearing a pair of headphones playing relaxing, or inspiring music (I like classical guitar music for this) can have the brilliant effect of helping you focus on the important tasks as well as letting everyone around you know that you are working and are not to be disturbed. This is a trick I learnt many years ago when working on a busy office, it signals that you are busy and people around you become more considerate about interrupting you as they know it will take longer to get your attention.
5. Organise your day: Having a fixed diarised set of “success activities” in your calendar that are treated as important as an appointment with your best client. As entrepreneurs it’s so easy get distracted and pulled off course, so we need anchors in the day to help “get stuff done”. As we are our own bosses, we need to let our calendars be our boss and strictly adhere to the appointments within it. I am particularly easily distracted so have to work really hard to be accountable to my diary and form the habits that lead to success. Writing this article right now is a great example of that. Every Sunday morning my diary says 8.30 am-10.30 am “write blog/email”, and here it is!
6. Inspiration & learning: Finding time every day to be inspired by a motivational guru I believe is one of the most important things we can do to keep a brains healthy. Find your favourite author and spend time EVERY DAY listening to them and feeding from their wisdom. A popular app called Audible is great for listening to, meaning you can multitask or alternatively try podcast apps for tonnes of material. I listen to Grant Cardone, Dan Pena and Zig Ziggler whilst I’m working out every day, but maybe you prefer to read or do both at the same time.
7. Eat healthily: Diet has a huge impact on our mindset, especially when we see great results from an effort to improve the way we look and feel. It’s basic science and common sense that if you follow an exercise plan, and eat a balanced calorie-neutral diet that suits your taste and moral preference you will get results. Those results become inspiring and mentally you improve. Apps like My Fitness Pal can help you find the specifics of this and set reminders each day to track your progress.
A lot of these may seem obvious, but getting a routine that works for you is not easy. Once achieved, managing your time will be much, much easier and a clear path to success will be yours!