Tips for Prioritizing Your Mental Health
Posted on May 25, 2022
May is Mental Health Month and we are thinking of you, Solapreneurs!
As a beauty professional, it can be particularly difficult to maintain a steady routine that factors your mental health into the mix. Between the responsibilities as a small business owner and the high demand for your services as a beauty professional, not to mention obligations to family and friends, you may find yourself getting lost in the mix.
However, taking care of yourself is of the utmost importance, especially as a business owner and service provider. Quite simply, your entire business depends on your health and well-being. Going into the busy summer months, this is a great time of year to take stock of your mental and emotional health and recalibrate to where you want to be.
Here are a few tips that can help beauty professionals maintain their self-care, healthy boundaries and happy state of being amongst the hustle:
Sometimes taking a break is actually the most productive thing you can do. Studies show that people who do take breaks are more productive than their head-down-power-through-it counterparts.
When and how your breaks occur throughout your day is up to you. Some people need a bathroom break or a short walk every 90 minutes. For others, a longer midday stroll or a sit-down lunch is more appropriate.
As a Solapreneur, you get to define your schedule, so plan according to your needs. If you need to schedule 10-minute breaks between clients - factor that into your online booking system. If taking a full day off once per week is more your style - schedule it!
There is no perfect solution for when and how to take breaks, but research does show that people with at least 2 breaks per day tend to feel better about their productivity and mental state. So walk outside in the sunshine, take a coffee break, do a few yoga poses or call your best friend - just do something to break up the day and boost your productivity.
Burnout is especially common for those of you who tend to go above and beyond - you know who you are! You might double as a client’s therapist or take on the urgent early morning appointment before your doors typically open. Maybe you offer free coffee and cocktails to clients - consistently keeping the creamer and bubbly water freshly stocked. Or you may even allow the client who is perpetually 20 minutes late to always keep her spot - even if it totally messes up your own day.
As a beauty professional, barista, therapist, life coach, mixologist, and business owner - do you know where to draw the line? Setting boundaries is an essential skill for any small business owner.
The first step is to deeply inquire within - what is not working for you? Write down a few things that really mess up your day-to-day flow or emotional state. Then, for each grievance, find a solution that includes setting a healthy boundary.
Ex. Grievance: I feel stressed when my late clients do not arrive on time and it messes up my day.
Boundary: Set a late policy - anybody more than 10 minutes late is a no-show and will incur a late cancellation fee. Let your clients know about it, either via email or on your online booking platform. You can give some of your favorite late clients a first-time pass if that feels like an appropriate on-ramp to your new salon policy, but after that - stick to your boundary.
Ex. Grievance: I have clients that call me to book, even though I have an online booking system.
Boundary: Create a salon policy - appointments are exclusively booked online - and let clients know via website, email or SMS messaging. When a client calls, politely let them know that you have switched to online booking and can no longer schedule via phone.
When you have set your boundaries decisively, you will feel more confident asserting them, and clients will become more inclined to respect them. With a healthy boundary, before you know it, things that felt like daily struggles will turn into opportunities for greater ease and flow in your relationships.
There is an old Zen saying that says, “you should sit in meditation for 20 minutes a day. Unless you're too busy, then you should sit for an hour.”
Research shows that a regular meditation practice provides mental and emotional benefits such as:
- Stress management
- Improves self-awareness
- Increases patience and tolerance
- Improves emotional wellbeing
- Reduces symptoms of anxiety and depression
- Greater presence and focus
- Improves sleep quality
We recommend starting with a 10-minute daily meditation practice, preferably in the morning to set you up for a good day. To begin, it may help to follow a guided meditation. A quick YouTube or Spotify search will bring you to any length or theme of meditation. For just 10 minutes per day, get into your body, focus on your breath and allow thoughts to come and go without judgment.
Meditation builds mental resilience, fortitude and stability that can get you through anything difficult that life has to throw at you. While starting a regular meditation practice may feel daunting - we promise - it gets easier over time. The benefits build over time as well, so stick with it!
Schedule personal time:
As a Solapreneur, you have the beauty of designing your own schedule. Still, sometimes it is easy to overbook and forget to take your well-earned time off. Vacation time, personal days and even sick days can sometimes fall by the wayside when you become your own boss. Do not underestimate the power of time off. Taking some time away from work and the pressures of daily life has a huge long-term impact on your overall well-being and mental health.
Instead of wondering when you will get time to yourself - book it! We recommend scheduling personal time and vacation time with Sola Genius’s online booking platform. We love how the Sola Genius platform allows you to book personal time off, without clients getting into your personal life details. They will not know why you are busy, just that you are booked out and unavailable for services at that time.
When you book yourself for me-time - for a couple of hours, days or even weeks (hello, summer vacation 👋) you are setting a boundary with yourself - to give yourself the time you need to replenish and rejuvenate. You are also setting a healthy boundary with your clients - so remember to keep that time for yourself when your availability is challenged. Time off is just as valid for your business as time on. Keep your boundaries to stay resourced and grounded, to serve as a stable foundation for your business, craft and clientele to flourish.
Community of support
The beautiful thing about the Sola community is that you are never alone. Although you are in business for yourself, you are not in business by yourself.
In challenging moments, remember that you are not alone. Reach out to fellow Sola professionals or Sola team members when you need support, guidance or a listening ear. As a community, we are more resourced and powerful together.
Please make sure to check in with your fellow Solapreneurs and ask for help when you need it. We are all in this together 💙