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How to Take Care of Your Mental Health While Running a Creative Business

Creativity asks a lot of us.

The brain actually works so hard to be creative! When we’re coming up with new ideas, figuring out how to execute them, and moving the pieces around until we get them just right, the brain is working like crazy. As creative business owners, we do this all dang week.

Not only that, we have alllll of the other CEO responsibilities that come along with running a creative business, we scroll through our social media to see our fellow creative business owners seemingly living the DREAM while our to-do lists are piling up…I mean, your head and heart can be literally dead by Tuesday. Easily.

The bottom line is that you should be taking care of your mental health before you are taking care of your business.

And I KNOW it seems sort of impossible when you’re in the swing of things, because you’re like, “okay I’ll just finish this thing and then I’ll take a rest”, and there’s always a “but-” 

I think we can afford to run our businesses a little more intuitively! We started them to gain a little more freedom, right?

We can’t force ourselves to be creative all the time, no person is built like that. We also can’t force ourselves to work until burnout every week, it’s just plain counterproductive. So here’s what I suggest:

  1. Schedule in some check-points.

If you’re the kind of person who gets in the ZONE easily and forgets to check back in, you may need to just stick it in your schedule or put a reminder in your phone. See how you’re doing physically, mentally, and emotionally, and ask yourself, “What do I need today?” Whatever the answer is, find a way to give it to yourself. One way or another, something can be moved around! Which brings me to my next point:

  1. Allow yourself some guilt-free flexibility!

At the end of the day, when you run your own business, the only person putting deadlines and structure in your business is you. You’re allowed to be the coolest boss ever to yourself! Did you accomplish something or work super hard recently? Treat yourself! Have you not seen a face in the outside world in a minute? Schedule a lunch with a friend in the middle of your workday! Are you feeling burnt out? Take the day off. You will come back a better business owner because of it. 

  1. Put people in your corner who support you.

I can’t even begin to tell you how beneficial it has been to have people in my corner from several areas of my life, especially in my first few months as an online business owner. Whether it’s people you’ve met online who are in the same field, real life friends, family, or a significant other, you need that support system. Having people to lean on and talk to when you need it is absolutely invaluable.

  1. As often as possible, slow down.

Put down your phone, spend some time with yourself, and turn your brain off. I personally like to start my mornings slow. I wake up early, spend some time away from my screens in my own company, and journal. You can usually catch me by the window, or sitting out on our little Chicago porch sipping my coffee. Once you’ve given that time to yourself, you’ll be in the perfect headspace to give your time to your business and to other business owners.

The Journal