We hear it all the time. “You SHOULD prioritize your health.” “You SHOULD exercise.” “You SHOULD eat right.” Well, I’d like to propose that prioritizing your health is not at all about what you SHOULD do. It’s about what’s right for YOU—what you need, want, and works for your stage in life, business, and family. I think most of us do WANT to prioritize our health, at least to some degree or another; however, many things get in the way of putting that motivation into practice. Let’s address some of the most common issues that can present as challenges to putting ourselves first when it comes to our health.
What is the main obstacle to you making your health a priority?
- Work. If work is what’s keeping you from taking the time to take care of yourself, it’s time to make some boundaries. I think we can all agree that when it comes to work, especially as mom entrepreneurs, we could work 24/7 and still not run out of things to do. Make your schedule. Stick to it. When “work time” is over… it’s actually over! Feel free to move on to what’s next—time for family, time for hobbies, time for healthy meal prep, time for YOU!
- Family. If family is what’s keeping you from making your health a priority, it’s time to ask for help. Running a business is hard, especially when yourkids are young and depend on you for nearly everything. If you can’t afford a full time babysitter or daycare, or it’s just important to you to be available to your children, consider utilizing a “mother’s helper.” Pay a trustworthy pre-teen in the neighborhood a few dollars an hour to simply play with your kids for a little while so you can take a walk or pop in an exercise video or work on preparing a healthy dinner. Taking that well deserved break can make all the difference in your productivity and your health, both physical and mental!
- Busyness. If it feels like much of your day is occupied by shuttling kids, meeting with clients, busting out deadlines, it’s time to plan ahead. It can be challenging to take the time to eat well. When you’re in the car and your stomach is rumbling, that fast food “restaurant” at the next light is a very real temptation. When you’re chained to your desk and the clock is ticking, anything quick, from a box or a bag, may be your first instinct. But there are ways around that processed food trap. Try throwing an extra large smoothie together in the morning and drinking half for breakfast and the other half for a snack later. Have veggies and fruits cut up in the fridge, along with some healthful dipping options like hummus or yogurt dip. String cheese or nuts are handy options for portable snacks that pack a high protein punch to satisfy hunger on the go and keep the urge for junk at bay. A little creativity and a bit of planning is all it takes to set yourself up for success!
So wherever you are and whatever your biggest challenges to prioritizing your health, there are steps you can take to a healthier, happier you. Make a goal. Make it a small one. Make a change toward health because it’s important to you. You’re worth it!