April is Stress Awareness Month. Chronic or sustained stress is linked to depression. Chronic stress leads to elevated levels of the stress hormone cortisol, resulting in reduced serotonin in the brain that leads to depression.
Business owners, particularly online retailers,deal with high levels of stress. If they can’t bring the tension under control, entrepreneurs may suddenly find themselves sloping toward depression and unable to cope with the rigors of their business. Online retailing is more challenging than your typical kind of business. Most often, online retailers wear many hats and single-handedly deal with challenges that are often handled by a team of workers in brick-and-mortar businesses.
To better manage stress, consider these ideas:
- Make lists – Writing down your daily tasks allows you to tackle problems one at a time, rather than feeling constantly overwhelmed.
- Make time to exercise – When things get to be too much, try stepping away and exercising. Take 30 minutes to disconnect and take a brisk walk. You will return to your problems with a fresh new perspective and better disposition.
- Cook – Some entrepreneurs relax by cooking. Trying a new recipe can take your mind off your business problems.Take the leftovers to work the next day for a healthy, home cooked meal.
- Start with the smallest problem – When facing problems on all fronts, pick up the smallest one and focus all your attention and energy on it. Solving one problem, no matter how minor, can boost your confidence and give you the right attitude to face the bigger ones.
- Include fun things on your to-do list – Your to-do list will likely include a litany of crucial tasks, but make sure to include a few enjoyable things, too. Even something as simple as going to the gym or getting a haircut can provide a nice diversion from the heavy stuff of the day.
- Spend time with the family – Many entrepreneurs complain about not having enough time to finish all their tasks, but always squeezing in just one more job can rob time from the most important things in life, such as relationships. Making time to be with family can keep your priorities in the right place and improve your outlook. Taking time to relax can also help you be more productive. You often work faster after a little R and R with the people you love.
Removing the stress from your day-to-day activities can help you maintain your quality of life and steer clear of problems like depression.