Managing Stress as a Small Business Owner

To own and run a business gives a sense of fulfillment that many entrepreneurs cherish. For many, if not all, it's a dream come true. However, the responsibility of running a business comes with stress. So much stress can affect productivity and lead to poor performance of such a business.

The simple truth which is often common with entrepreneurs working alone or with few employees is that when such entrepreneurs are incapacitated by poor health, their business takes a hit. This is why business owners must invest generously in stress management to maintain physical and mental wellbeing which will tell positively on the business as well.

As much as your goal is to drive your business forward, then stress management is unavoidable. Below are practical techniques that help small business owners cope with and manage stress successfully.

Know Your Stressors

To effectively tackle stress, a knowledge of the cause is important. It will help tackle the problem from the source rather than just trying to remove the effect it has on you. Stress could accompany a yet to be accomplished task or an ongoing task. Identify if the idea of the task ahead or the entirety of the task causes you anxiety. Additionally, how you react to anxiety or the huge task ahead can be a problem also.   

In all do well to know what type of task stresses you and outsource it. If outsourcing is not an option, carefully think about the job in advance and think of how best to approach it in a less complicated way. Also, take a self-examination to note what triggers anxiety or stresses you. This will help you adjust your response to huge and tasking jobs. 

Know What's Going Well

Taking note of business progress also reveals some areas that are lacking. Assessing your business and noting the aspects functioning smoothly gives a sense of accomplishment and control. In tough situations, your affairs won't appear crumbling and out of control. You'd able to remember aspects of the business going well, and remain optimistic that other seemingly impossible tasks will fall in place when you make effort.

Keep to Your Schedule

Have a schedule and follow it to make the best use of your time. Most entrepreneurs complain that the day is never enough to accomplish their tasks and end up overworking themselves late into the night. A cycle of late nights eats into the time for the activities piled up for the next day. Stress results from this unending cycle and productivity suffers.

With a schedule, however,  the day won't seem to finish fast when you haven't done much. The problem for many who complain of little time in a day is that they do not plan well and end up achieving little. Endeavor to plan well and appropriately, this way you will feel in control and less stressed as you tick off activities completed as the day runs out.

A schedule also informs you of any big task ahead which you can plan to tackle early in the day or when concentration is at the highest. In planning, put into consideration your make-up and consequently schedule tasking jobs to times when you're sure to concentrate adequately.  

Plan Some "You" Time

"Me" time may sound vague and totally unnecessary, but this is not quite true. Beyond a good sleep, mentally and emotionally everyone needs to unwind. Spend time on recreational activities, time with families and friends, or take breaks to refresh in any form that suits you. You'll not only feel you're in control of your affairs but also won't get lost in the cycle of work. 

It's easy to get deceived that working around the clock signifies efficiency, but that can be detrimental to your health and of course your business. So, learn to take breaks to renew and energize yourself. 

Learn When to Say No

The urge to take on a lot may be high especially for entrepreneurs just growing their business. This could result from trying to grow fast, trying not to offend anyone, or the fear of losing opportunities that may not come again.  For one, taking on too much is the fastest way to get stressed out. The possible implication of this is the mishandling of jobs due to fatigue or ending up a workaholic. 

Entrepreneurs must learn when to say yes or no. Always consider your capabilities, time, and availability to attend to projects before accepting. When you set boundaries, your well-being and business won't suffer due to pressure to please people or any other reason that may induce you to take on excess tasks.

Contents