As an established health and wellness entrepreneur and a woman in her 40s, I feel I’ve learned a thing or two about how to stay healthy while tackling life’s demands. The act of “listening” has been a profound teacher for me and is one of the ways I’ve maintained my success as a mother, wife, philanthropist, clinic owner and entrepreneur.
I believe taking time to really observe how our minds and bodies feel can help us both on a personal level and as business owners. Here are my tips on how to use “listening” to de-stress as busy entrepreneurs.
Listen to Your Physical Body
Your body actually gives you signals that can be pretty subtle at first, but become clear if you pay close attention. For example, observe how your body feels when you are eating, drinking coffee or exercising. When you pause for a moment and listen to how your body feels, it can actually give you a clearer indication of when you are tired and need rest. Same goes for when you’ve been on the couch too long and need some fresh air.
It’s easy to miss these signals when we’re busy and all over the place! The benefit of listening is that you move with the rhythms of your body, which can actually improve your health! The problem with not listening to these signals is that eventually, your body will do something more drastic, like burn out, or harm your immune system. We don’t want that!
Listen to Your Intuition
Once you begin to hear the subtle cues from the physical body, you get closer to the messages from your gut and heart. Your intuition is your inner compass telling you what feels right or wrong, what you should lean in to and what you should steer clear of. It took me a long time, but once I started listening to my gut and pairing that with my values, my life got a lot easier. I let go of the toxic relationships and gravitated towards people and projects that I was aligned with.
Listen to Nature
We are so overstimulated these days, not only on our devices, but even in our cars and when we walk around. Living in a large city, we are exposed to all kinds of noise, which is making our brains exhausted. Being in nature is an excellent way to recover our mental health. Tune into the sounds of nature, stop and listen to the birds or the sound of a lake. I like to dig my feet in the soil to feel grounded from all the electromagnetic waves we are exposed to from city life. The more you can fully immerse in nature with all of the senses, the more you connect back into what is most important in your life.
Listen to the Lessons
As entrepreneurs, we’ve decided to take risks to follow our dreams, and sometimes we fall down. Our mistakes and missteps offer give us an opportunity to learn, grow and evolve as business owners. I was lucky to make a lot of mistakes early in life, and while I felt so much guilt and shame at the time, it has sharpened my integrity and my resolve. Listening and learning from my mistakes helped to propel my business forward and make it what it is today!
Don’t Listen to Unsolicited Advice
Someone else’s opinion of you is none of your business. It should never affect how it makes you feel about yourself, good or bad. Drop the judgement of yourself and of others, and redirect your focus to your own integrity and dreams. Doing so will help you flourish.
I know it’s isn’t always easy, after all we tend to latch on to negative feedback far more than positive feedback. But it’s important to remember that no one can “make” you feel a certain way, you are in charge of how you respond to negativity or unsolicited opinions. Listening to unwanted advice can stunt your growth. Like Taylor Swift says “shake it off”!