Melissa Gough is a serial entrepreneur who has helped numerous start-up businesses along her own entrepreneurial journey. View profile
The world of entrepreneurship is definitely not for the fainthearted. It takes courage, grit, strength, determination & passion and although we may not all feel confident in each of those areas they are all muscles we can definitely learn to flex over time with consistency & experience. After all, we wouldn’t go to the gym just once and expect a 6 pack right?
The same goes once we’ve strengthened those skillsets, we must continue to work on fine-tuning them to become the best version of ourselves.
Again, we wouldn’t do all that work to get a 6 pack and then stop going to the gym would we?
However, no matter how much we work on ourselves, if we aren’t working on maintaining a positive mindset the entrepreneurial path can seem a hard journey to be on.
We can easily be knocked off course when things don’t work out, we hit obstacles or when goals start to seem unobtainable, we can head in a downwards spiral, 2020 is living proof for sure.
As entrepreneurs we are often wearing many hats and at the same time, sometimes we are head down, foot to the pedal and it can be hard to see situations for what they are. As such, we probably don’t always make the best decisions for our business.
But there are things we can do for sure to ensure we are giving it out best shot by creating new positive habits which in time we will see a compound effect of in both our personal & business lives.
So, let’s talk about exactly what those positive habits are.
This is HUGE. A lot of people see selfcare as a pamper day of bubble baths, face masks, and other spa indulgements but it is something we should be practicing every single day to maintain a strong positive mindset. (note: we should definitely still be indulging in pamper treats too, I just like to keep those for celebrating my wins!)
Here are some examples of what this could look like for you:
- Sleep – 7 hours minimum per night. Enough sleep is crucial to allow our bodies to recoup, recharge & heal so that we can perform at our optimum level, resulting in better ideas, decisions and outcomes for your goals. This is underrated but it’s amazing what happens when you treat your body properly and avoid overwork when undernourished, especially over long periods of time, which then becomes the norm.
- Water – Staying hydrated is another unappreciated factor to being the best version of yourself so you can run at your highest capability. Up to 60% of the human body is water. The heart & brain are composed of 73% water, the lungs 83%, skin contains 64% water, muscles and kidneys are 79% and even the bones contain 31% water. Generally speaking, adults need approximately 2 liters of water a day (no, coffee doesn’t count) and if it’s hot or your exercising then up to 3.5 liters can be consumed.
- Get Outside – I think this has been forced amongst a lot of us the past year. Being restricted on where we can go, we have been exploring closer to our homes with regular walks to break up working and living within the same 4 walls. This is definitely something we should all implement into our new working routines once ‘normal’ life resumes. Not to mention getting those steps in especially if you’re not managing to do any other form of exercise.
- Communication – keeping regular lines of communication open with family & friends will help to keep your life balanced. We need to ensure we aren’t all work and no play. Even though time is often tight with so many jobs to do as an entrepreneur, you will definitely enjoy your work a lot more. You need to allow your brain to have some downtime each day, it is crucial to reducing stress levels, overwhelm and the risk of burn out, something that a lot of entrepreneurs know about all too well.
Feed Your Mind
I would definitely position this 2nd to Selfcare because if you’re not looking after yourself through the above then a positive mind won’t save you from burnout.
Think of your mind as a vault, a place of strength and power where you can unlock all your capabilities and desires. Our minds are SO powerful and no one else has control over them but us! How cool is that! Nevertheless, we don’t always protect them like we should.
Remember this quote “Where focus goes, energy flows” (Tony Robbins).
Strength is in everything around us, we just need to focus on the calm & the good. When everything is constantly changing, we need to ensure that the way we pivot to change is positively. The power isn’t in the changes or the comments made around the changes (COVID for example), the power is in our reaction to those changes and how we choose to move forward.
So, how can we do that exactly?
What’s the first thing you do each day, when you open your eyes? (be honest). Is it reach for your phone on your bedside by any chance?
Ok, I want you to imagine your brain as a big dry sponge that from the moment you open your eyes in the morning starts to soak up everything that you ‘allow’ in. Now think about it like this. You pick up your phone, start scrolling through social media seeing the ‘perfect highlights’ of people’s lives, perfect airbrushed faces & bodies all in their professionally cleaned dust-free show homes with their perfect angel like children. Your sponge is now already full of negative thoughts and doubts as you’ve entered the world of ‘comparatinitous’ and are now left feeling inadequate and worthless as you begin your day.
This is exactly what happens in our subconscious and even though the day proves to start off badly, nothing you put on to wear looks nice, hair & make up won’t go right, your untidy home start to annoy you, yet we still continue to do this day in and day out. Why?!
Avoid the ‘scroll hole’ at all costs.
Second to that, we also need to allow our brains to have some downtime each day. This is crucial to reducing stress levels, overwhelm and burn out that a lot of entrepreneurs know about all too well. Reduced screen time in the morning and evening, as well as regular daily detoxes will help to strengthen that positive mindset and see the benefits of a balanced lifestyle.
Another thing that I find very beneficial is planning & scheduling my social posts in advance, not only for a beautifully curated feed, but to avoid the need to have to reach for my phone.
Batch content creation & planning is also a HUGE time saver.
An amazing replacement for the morning and evening ‘scroll hole’ is reading, not to mention it’s much better on the old eyes. We subject our eyes to so much blue light through phones, ipads, laptops, computers, smart watches, tv screens, and advertisement boards. It is literally everywhere, even in the sun!
Reading is one of the most powerful ways to inject positivity into your mind especially at the start of your day. Any form of self-education book, or autobiography by those who have walked the same entrepreneurial paths before us are great forms of coaching that will help save you time and money on your journey.
Mindset books will specifically teach you more proven daily tools and strategies to implement into your business that have been used for years.
I cannot stress the importance of having goals and clarity. Also, to have achievable goals, by that I mean goals we can set and achieve in short timeframes.
Yes, it’s important to have long term goals to have that dream life vision board but it must be broken down into smaller timeframes to be able to track and measure, celebrating the wins as you go. If you have a big goal and a huge list of things to do to get there, then the likeliness is that you will try to focus on them all at once and not accomplish very much. Try these…
-End Goal (The big vision, create a vision of this to remind yourself where you are going)
-Long Term Goals (The next 12 months)
-Short Term Goals (The next 90 days)
-Monthly, Weekly and daily goals (top 3 priorities for each timeframe)
This will allow you to be focused on the tasks in hand and move forward with clarity.
The Rule of esteem recognizes that all humans need and want praise, recognition, and acceptance.
William James once said, “The deepest principle of human nature is the craving to be appreciated.”
Therefore, remember to celebrate all the wins along the way, no matter how small (pamper indulges maybe!) it will most definitely help keep you motivated as you head towards your next set of goals.
In addition to the above there are other positive habits you can implement into your daily routine to create the compound effect of a positive mindset. Remember, your brain is a vault, a big eager and curious sponge and we get to choose what enters it. So here are some other practices for you to also consider:
- Journaling / brain dumping / emptying your brain – whatever you choose to call it, it helps! Something magical happens when pen hits paper it becomes real once it’s out of your head and the universe will help guide you (same with goals), it allows you to prioritize better too.
- Meditation – I understand this isn’t for everyone (I find it very hard to quiet my mind) but being still or inviting your mind to just slow down works wonders for aiding sleep and reducing overwhelm, anxiety, panic and worry. Guided meditation videos on YouTube are great for those who aren’t able to just focus on breathing. Using ‘positive guided meditation’ as a way of getting positive words into your mind in a morning if you’re not quite the reader is also a great way to start your day too.
- Stop the negative thoughts – noticing when you have negative thoughts is the first step, and this gets much faster the more you practice it (I think of it as a game I play with myself now). The next step is to stop them having an impact on your mood, again this gets quicker when you learn how to change your thought process. Eventually you will start to learn the trigger so you get there before your mind even becomes receptive to it. This practice does not happen overnight but starting to become aware of it is definitely a step in the right direction.
- Affirmations – Practicing positive affirmations definitely helps to improve your mindset. Start by writing down a list of things you’re not so positive about when it comes to yourself. This could be the way you look, your confidence, or your capabilities. Then write down the positive opposite of the negative you wrote down. For example,
“I am not confident” = “I am brave”
“I need to lose weight” = “I am beautiful”
Or you can simply write down those you see in your future self.
I am Strong
I am Brave
I am Courageous
I am Capable
I am Beautiful
Try setting an alarm on your phone several times a day, when you wake up and when you go to bed especially is a great help to remind you of these.
Also put them in places you see regularly such as screensavers, mirrors, fridge, office, car, purse…wherever is may be.
Your mind only knows what you think or what you allow to enter it.
You need to be the protector of your mind, feed it, nourish it well and allow it time to heal.
With consistency and patience your strength and resilience to outside factors will surely build. You will have control over your thoughts and your positive and powerful mindset will not only massively start to impact your life but your business too.
What you think you become,
What you feel you attract,
What you imagine you create.
As with everything mentioned, it is imperative that you don’t try to implement everything all at once, this will create overwhelm and lack of focus so choose 3 key strategies that feel most aligned to you right now and start with those.
Remember, the 21/90 rule…it takes 21 days to make a habit and 90 days to make it a lifestyle, so have patience with yourself and lean into each practice and enjoy it, don’t think of it as time you could be doing another task (we’ve all done that), rather, fully embrace and believe it will benefit you and your business.
I have no doubt whatsoever that you have the strength and ability to unlock your truest potential, one step, one day at time and become the best version of yourself living the best life you can imagine. Now it’s time, GLOW your brightest Sista, I’ll be watching!
BIG Loves, Melissa XoXo
Short Article Review
- Self-care and feeding your mind are the 2 most powerful practices we can do and at no cost at all
- Remember, the 21/90 rule…it takes 21 days to make a habit and 90 days to make it a lifestyle
- Talk kindly to yourself on a daily basis, out loud and in your thoughts
- You need to be the protector of your mind, feed it, nourish it well and allow it time to heal.
- Maintaining a positive mindset is a result of learning to flex your muscles over a period of time with consistency
The content in this article is for informational purposes only and is not intended as legal, tax, investment, financial, medical or other advice. Always seek the advice of a licensed professional regarding any questions you may have.
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