8 Ways for Stressed-Out Business Owners to Cope

Learn to manage the strain of the daily grind that comes with running the show

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Make no mistake: Running your own business can be a lot of fun. There’s no feeling that’s quite as good as building your own team from the ground up and providing a useful service to folks in your community.

Yet for all its rewards, small business ownership can also be a grind. On any given day, your attention might be consumed with budgetary constraints, with a hiring deficit, or with challenges keeping up with customer demand.

Stress is a part of life, but it can be especially acute for small business owners. The good news is, there are some healthy habits you can form to help mitigate that stress, and potentially save yourself from intense burnout.

How to Manage the Stress of Small Business Ownership

1) Learn to delegate

The fastest way to burn out is trying to do everything yourself. To save your sanity, identify the team members you can trust to handle big jobs or new responsibilities without a ton of oversight. There may be some growing pains here, but ultimately, delegating is an essential way to keep stress at bay.

2) Practice project mapping

Stressed about a big project? Break it down into smaller steps, and assign yourself a deadline for completing each one. Turning a big project into a series of smaller ones can make the entire thing feel more manageable.

3) Map out each day

The life of the entrepreneur is unpredictable, and there are bound to be some curveballs coming your way each day. Even so, it may help you feel on top of things to block out an hour each day for team development, for marketing, or for whatever other priorities have proven elusive.

4) Find a support network

Even online gatherings of like-minded business owners can give you a place to vent, to ask questions, and to be reminded that you’re not alone.

5) Learn to say no

As an entrepreneur, you may find it anathema to tell people no. But if you’re already resource-strapped and overwhelmed, it may be essential to learn how to decline things that are tangential to the overall success of your business.

6) Organize your workspace

Studies have shown that clutter and chaos tend to increase stress. Schedule a few minutes at the end of each week to tidy your desk area.

7) Prioritize physical health

If your physical health declines, your emotional health is sure to follow. As you block out time for essential tasks each week, make sure you allocate space to go to the gym or simply to take a long walk.

8) Journal

You may not think of yourself as a journaler, but taking the time to write down all the stuff swirling around your brain can help you process it, then let some of it go.

Be Proactive in Stamping Out Stress

Stress and burnout are major concerns for small business owners everywhere. By following these tips, you can be proactive in promoting your own mental health… to the benefit of your company, your career, your team, and your customers.


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