As entrepreneurs, we don’t treat weekends like other people do. When the concept of a weekend began, it was because the workweek (Monday through Friday) was supposed to be for labor, and the weekend (Saturday and Sunday) was dedicated to rest.
However, when you’re an entrepreneur, you’re always on. The weekend just means two more work days, and many aren’t dedicating any time to rest. But when we start burning the candle at both ends—eliminating all chances for rest and recuperation—we start working against ourselves and snuffing out our creative energy.
As a long-time entrepreneur, I have learned firsthand the value of honoring your weekend time and putting intention into recalibrating. And there are many ways to refuel.
Here are seven things the most successful entrepreneurs I know do:
Arianna Huffington’s The Sleep Revolution opened the world’s eyes to the importance of sleep to function as professionals—going as far as to describe sleep deprivation as the new smoking, it’s that bad!—and this is especially true for entrepreneurs.
If you’re trying to build a business, not getting enough sleep is going to hurt your success over the long haul. Why? Your brain can’t function as well. You may be sending a lot of emails, but you’re not going to be as innovative and you won’t be producing at your highest and best capacity.
2. Get an emotional deposit from friends and family.
Spend time with those who don’t require you to be so intellectually engaged as you are during the week. Connecting with loved ones on an emotional level requires you to access a different part of your brain.
Socialization and love are important food for your creative process. Fill up your cup with those who celebrate you and get you on a core level so that you can go back into your workweek with the creative energy you need to succeed.
3. Read something that doesn’t have to do with business.
I call this brain candy! This is something you read (or listen to) that will feed the creative side of your brain. Now, I don’t mean read a tabloid magazine. I mean pick up that novel you’ve been neglecting, listen to a story-based podcast or go to a live play.
Recently, I engaged my children in watching Aladdin and it ignited a creative spark in both of them to imagine and dream bigger than ever. This one activity lit up parts of our brains that are often underutilized.
4. Do something physical.
Time is a finite resource, but energy is expandable. As entrepreneurs, we need every bit of energy we can get. It is the source of your power and fuels your competitive edge. Physical activity is a key ingredient to creating more of your energy resource.
You don’t have to go to the gym or take a rigorous exercise class. Take a walk. Go golfing. Go to a dance class. There are so many ways to move your body that contribute to increased energy.
5. Cook a meal.
Like physical movement, food is fuel for your body and contributes to increased energy. It’s also a creative endeavor! Immerse yourself into creating fuel for your body that really allows you to be creative, and spoil yourself. There are a ton of great websites with easy recipes for all diets, budgets and experience levels.
You can get twice the points here if you cook something with your family or friends. Spending time in the kitchen is a great way to get away from all the screens and create something with the people you love.
6. Find your spiritual center.
Do not skip over this one! I’ve noticed that when the entrepreneurs around me go off course, it’s often because they’re not making enough time to get grounded, and it throws off their decision-making. They start acting out of a place of selfishness or get distracted by all the voices around them.
Spiritually is not the same thing as religion. Whatever way you choose to go deeper within yourself and connect to the world around you, that’s your spirituality. It’s vital for you to dedicate time to this each week in order to re-center yourself, which is an important step in how you make decisions.
7. Get quiet.
Find time to sit and just be. Be quiet. Perhaps you use an app to meditate, you like to pray or you just focus on breathing. Whatever you do, your brain needs to unwind and process everything you’ve done throughout the week. You can’t come up with your best ideas if your head is always buzzing and you don’t clear out enough space for something new to emerge.
We live in an overstimulated world, and that is especially true for the entrepreneur who is always on. Finding even just 15 minutes to get quiet will do wonders for your creative process.
While I don’t expect you to dedicate two full days to rest, it’s important to recalibrate. That means returning to your set point and refilling your cup with everything that fuels your creative process.
Photo by GaudiLab/Shutterstock.com