Entrepreneurs can deal with stress by recognizing it and maintaining a healthy lifestyle to promote their mental and physical health and remain productive over the long term. A key strategy for improving business success is by prioritizing and investing in individual health as well as business health. Entrepreneurs are often very good at taking care of business but not so good at taking care of themselves.
5 Ways in which entrepreneurs can deal with stress
Find their Zen state through movement
Successful Entrepreneurs suffering from stress look for ways to get out of their heads and release their brains from work by finding their Zen state. Finding your Zen state means finding your sense of balance to feel in harmony with your surroundings. Finding your Zen state is a way to quieten your mind and body, which you can achieve by doing the following five activities;
1. Deep breathing
Deep breathing is one of the ideal ways to reduce stress in the body. This is because once you take in a deep breath, it signals your brain to calm down and relax. Taking a deep breath and releasing it gives you a cleansing effect and gives you a feeling of letting go. Most symptoms of stress, such as increased blood pressure, fast breathing, and a high heart rate, reduce as you take a relaxing deep breath.
As you embark on deep breathing, there are various breathing exercises, which you can use based on what suits you best. These exercises include the following;
Belly breathing is so easy to accomplish and can leave you feeling relaxed. Here is how you can do it;
- Sit or lie down flat in a cozy position.
- Place one hand on your belly right below your ribs and the other hand on your chest.
- Through your nose, take a deep breath in and allow your belly to push your hand out. Don’t move your chest.
- Breathe out through pursed lips as though you were whistling. Feel the hand placed on your belly go in, and use it to push all the air out.
- Do this belly breathing exercise around 3 to 10 times. Take your time with every breath.
This kind of deep breathing exercise involves using belly breathing to help you relax. Do the 4-7-8 breathing while sitting or lying down. Here is how you can do it;
- Position one hand on your belly and the other on your chest as you do the belly breathing exercise.
- Slowly inhale from your belly as you silently count to 4.
- Hold your breath and silently count from one to eight. Endeavor to get all the air out of your lungs by the count of eight.
- Repeat the whole exercise 3 to 7 times or until you feel calm.
Roll breathing helps you exercise your lungs and lets you concentrate on the rhythm of your breathing. Feel free to do roll breathing in any position. But if you are a beginner at roll breathing, you should lie on your back with your knees bent. Here is how you can do it;
- Position your left hand on your belly and your right hand on your chest. Realize how your hands move as you inhale and exhale.
- Exercise filling your lower lungs by breathing so that your belly with the left hand moves up if you inhale and your chest with the right hand remains still. Always inhale using your nose and exhale through your mouth. Repeat this 8 to 10 times.
- Once you have filled and emptied your lower lungs 8 to 10 times, incorporate the second step above to your breathing: Inhale first into your lower lungs as before, and keep inhaling into your upper chest. Breathe slowly and repeatedly. As you do this, your right hand will rise, and your left hand will fall a bit as your belly falls.
- While you exhale slowly through your mouth, make a quiet, whooshing sound as your left hand falls, followed by your right hand. As you exhale, feel the anxiety leaving your body, leaving you feeling more relaxed.
- Practice inhaling and exhaling as explained in the previous step for 3 to 5 minutes. Notice the motion of your belly and chest expanding and falling like the motion of rolling waves.
After waking up in the morning, do this exercise to relieve muscle stiffness and clear your clogged breathing passages. Utilize this breathing exercise for the entire day to relieve back tension. Follow these steps;
- Bend forward from your waist with your knees slightly bent from a standing position, allowing your arms to dangle close to the floor.
- While you breathe in slowly and deeply, get back to a standing position by slowly rolling up and lifting your head last.
- Hold your breath for just a few seconds while in this standing position.
- Breathe out slowly as you return to your original position, bending forward from your waist.
Walking is a cardiovascular exercise that gives entrepreneurs time to think and get away from stressors. Brisk walking triggers the production of endorphins, which are stress-reducing hormones.
Dancing is also a cardiovascular exercise that has mood-enhancing benefits. Dancing makes your body release endorphins, which act as natural painkillers, stress alleviators, and hormones that improve sleep. Entrepreneurs use dance as an outlet for emotional expression, stress reduction, and creativity.
4. Bike riding
The day-to-day life of entrepreneurs can be overwhelming, but getting out to ride your bike can help you better manage your stress, which may cause you to breathe faster.
Cycling on a bike forces you to regulate your breathing and also enables you to breathe deeper to expel any lingering carbon dioxide in your lungs. According to scientists from the University of Bristol in the UK, expanding your lungs lifts your diaphragm, taking pressure off your nerve center in your solar plexus and relieving the stress imposed on your central nervous system.
Stretching is a great stress reliever for entrepreneurs. If you are suffering from stress, the chances are high that your muscles are tense. This is because your muscles tend to tighten up in reaction to physical and emotional stress. When stretching, focus on body parts, which hold your stress including, your shoulders, neck, and upper back.
Stretching relieves muscle tension and helps your muscles let go of where you are carrying stress on your body. This leaves you feeling relaxed and enables you to sleep better. Yoga and Tai Chi are great examples of formal stretching. For any ongoing injuries make sure you work with a qualified exercise professional to help with a personalized exercise and stretching plan.
Entrepreneurs can relieve stress by using various body movements such as stretching, deep breathing, bike riding, dancing, and walking.
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