Women's roles in society
10/10/16 at 02:45 PM 0 Comments

5 Ways Women Can Manage The Stress Of Running A Business

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As a woman entrepreneur, the fact is that you are likely to be forging a new path, wherever you go. While women have always worked and owned businesses to some degree or another, the number of women owning businesses has greatly expanded in recent years. This is good news for the economy, and for women at large, but it can also be stressful.

Women tend to have a harder time than their male counterparts getting adequate funding for their businesses, and they may struggle to find mentors who understand the specific challenges that face women business owners. This is especially true from women who have multiple marginalizations – women who are also people of color, LGBT, or disabled, for example.

These five tips can help women business owners manage and cope with the stress that comes from being your own boss.

Find someone to talk to
Whether it’s your best friend or a therapist, if you have significant stress in your life, you need somewhere to talk about that stress which isn’t your primary relationship. While your partner can be an amazing support, it can be hard for them to be entirely focused on your struggles when the financial health of the business supports them as well.

If you’re running into trouble with business problems, it’s worth finding a mentor who can help you sort through various issues as they arise. You don’t have to solve everything on your own.

Take time away from the business
Running your own business can feel overwhelming, and as if you need to spend every moment putting out fires. The truth is that while there may be times when you put everything you have into running a business, if you’re doing that every single day, something’s going wrong. You might need to hire on additional staff, contract something out to a freelancer, or narrow the focus of your business for a time.

If you take regular breaks from the day to day operations of your company, it will be easier to see what’s going well, and what needs refining.

Find time to rest and recharge
What do you do when you’re tired and need a break? Do you go out with friends for a glass of wine, enjoy a luxurious bubble bath, or check out a new book from the library and curl up under a blanket with your favorite hot beverage? Whatever it is that lets you unwind, it’s important to make time. Yet again, you’ll come back to your work with a fresh perspective and renewed energy.

One thing to be careful about: unfortunately, many women who struggle with stress may find themselves vulnerable to substance abuse, often in the form of sleeping pills. Women may find that they have difficulty relaxing enough to sleep at night, and begin taking medication that helps them to sleep. While this is fine as an occasional sleep aid, if it becomes a regular need, it’s important to see a doctor to determine the best way to move forward.

Maintain your passions
Do you ever look at your life and fondly remember the ways that you used to spend your time before you started your business? Whatever was your passion before you became an entrepreneur, it’s important to continue to make time for that passion during your work life. Much like taking time away, finding time to honor your passions will help you return to your business with a clear head, ready to take on problems as they arise.

If your business grew out of your passions, this can be somewhat more complicated. Especially for artists, finding ways to monetize your art can end up taking a lot of the joy out of creation. It helps to compartmentalize your approach; find time to focus on the joy of your art form, and additional time to focus on the business aspects of your work.

Mentor those who are facing the same challenges
Sometimes, a good way to relieve stress is to reach back down and lend a helping hand to the women who are coming up behind you. Mentoring another aspiring entrepreneur can help you feel like you’re giving back, and help you focus on why this work is important in the first place.

Many women face an inordinate amount of stress in their day to day lives, but for women entrepreneurs, the pressures can be especially difficult. By finding healthy methods to relieve your stress, you have the chance to make sure that you – and your business – are well taken care of.

What strategies do you use in your own life to manage the stress from you career?

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