Inspiration from Meghan

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Is running your own business bad for your health?


As you know- I am a super cheerleader for people who want to make their healthy biz dreams come true, and all I can to help make that happen- but I caution you that it could totally ruin your health.

It's true. Pay attention.

Having a business you love, that gives you a sense purpose and makes you feel like you are making a difference is a huge contributing factor to total health. The challenge is that too many people allow it do the opposite.

5 Tips to Ensure A Healthy Body and A Healthy Biz

1. Set Your Limits
Dream big. Really, really big. In all things. Then decide what you are willing and not willing to do to make that happen and stick to it. Are you not willing to work past 6:00pm? Don't. Are you determined to take one full weekend off a month? Do it. Are you willing to endorse this company because you love them and their values work with your values? Do it. Are you not willing to endorse that product, despite the moolah because they offend your values? Stick to it. Your reputation, sanity and breathing space depend on it- and so does your health!

2. Take A Break
Make it a priority every day, every week, every month and for a good chunk of time every year to completely disconnect. You must give yourself space to maintain your sanity or none of the joys that we all associate with rocking your own dreams in real life will happen. A proper lunch break also falls into this category. Take time everyday to get nourished!

3. Drink
No- I am not talking about taking to the bottle. I am talking about taking care of the little things you need to take care of everyday. It's easy to get caught up in the task and the deadline as it typically rests solely on your shoulders. That makes it extra important that you make it a point to stay well hydrated, and well fed throughout your workday. What your brain produces will only be as powerful was what you use to fuel it.

4. Make Friends
These friends don't have to work beside you, or even in the same industry. These friends are other people also rocking out their own life dreams, who understand why you can't be out late on a Saturday night (with a deadline looming), and why you want to eat the best food ever (see point 3 above). These will be people who have similar interests as you, force you to make social commitments that promote networking outside your field and give you that fun you need for balance.

5.  Don't Quit.
Don't mortgage your house and all you own to keep on something that isn't working- but don't give up easily either. This goes for professional success and health success. The best results always come with consistency and commitment- that goes for healing the body, and creating a successful career you love.  You can do it. I said so.

I have been doing this for nearly five years. I have had many sleepless nights. Made many, many, many, costly mistakes. I have worked 20 hour days.  I have learned to say YES! And mean it. And I had to learn how to say NO, and be okay with that too. Running your own business is really flipping hard, and at the same time, truly the greatest thing in the whole wide world and I wouldn't trade it for anything! I can't say I loved every minute- but the bits that I didn't love, I definitely learned from and I am healthier for the whole experience.

What is your best tip for keeping healthy when other stuff seems determined to get in your way?


10 Responses to “Is running your own business bad for your health?”

  1. Eleanor said…
    This is so incredibly inspiring. I always say "stick to your principles" when I hear myself or others talk of making seemingly small sacrifices that in the end will add up and really dig a big hole in either their dreams, or their self-worth, or their health or sanity, ect.
    • Meghan Telpner said…
      Great advice!
  2. sarah maughan said…
    I know that as soon as my day starts I will never take a moment to meditate, stop or relax so as soon as I get up I spend 10 minutes (setting my alarm 10 - 20 min earlier if necessary) breathing, and doing some light stretches and movement, sometimes I don't even leave the bed! Other times I roll out my yoga mat. I set my alarm for 10 minutes so I can just focus without worrying what time it is or when I have to stop. :)
  3. Kate Engineer said…
    Hey Meghan! As a female entreprenuer, I totally agree with every key point you mentioned! It is so true that your health is always number one, even before your business, and setting limits is the key to living a balanced lifestyle..and one that your associates will respect you more for! Thanks for the great reminders and advice! Kate
    • Meghan Telpner said…
  4. Sue Abell said…
    This is right on the mark Meghan. I am celebrating my 5th anniversary this January as well when I stepped away from the indoor gym and branched out to create my own fit and health organization. For two years I lost total sight of how to do what you highlight above and finally, this year, I am at peace. In addition to everything you said, my mantra is "kindness to self" and I actually decided what this meant in my life and apply it always. Number one is always having an amazing novel at my bedside to escape for even 10 minutes, number two is making no apologies ever for spending money on the best food and number three is asking for what I need to stay healthy, even if it is uncomfortable to speak up for myself. My health is number one if my business is to continue and if my marriage is to flourish and children grow.
    • Meghan Telpner said…
      YES! I am with you on all three of those two. That book is a non-negotiable for me too.
  5. Katherine said…
    I think these tips apply to anyone who works. Having a job & working for someone else can also be really bad for your health, maybe even more so because of the lack of personal power & choice at times. Stressful though it may be, I would much rather have my own business than be under a "boss".
  6. This is exactly what I needed to read right now. Thank you! What resonates with me most is your advice to not quit. I've been working for myself for about 7 months. I haven't wanted to give up...but it does keep me going to remember that my commitment to this business & myself will pay off soon enough. Another thing I do for my health is yoga. Life is so much better when I'm consistently practicing yoga : ) Thanks again!
  7. Angela Privin said…
    Hello Meghan, Your friend Becca told me about your web site and I am so happy to have found it and have read this post. Like you I healed my "incurable" severe digestive issues (Irritable Bowel Syndrome) about 7 years ago and am symptom-free to this day. The business I started 6 months ago (Do It Yourself Health) help people heal their own digestive issues by giving them the guidance and resources they need to heal themselves. I love my work with a passion but I have turned into a workaholic and have trouble taking vacations. I want my business to succeed so badly and I feel compelled to work all the time. I find balance by practicing a moving meditation called Qi Gong but I have thrown myself out of balance a few times due to overwork. This is ironic for a health coach. Luckily I have the foundation and resources to get myself back into balance before my health is adversely affected. My business has inspired me to eat healthier and to tackle mindset monsters. And your post has inspired me to set boundaries for taking time off. I would really, really love to know more about your journey and the mistakes that you made. I am sure a lot of business owners would too. It is so great to learn from others without going down that path ourselves. Thanks again for this wonderful post.

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