Successful entrepreneurs have a lot in common. They share a particular kind of drive, an ability to see projects through to completion. They’ve mastered the art of time management.
These skills are critical to professional success, but if you want a career that lasts and won’t leave you feeling burnt out, they may not be the most important. No, the skills that really matter are the ones entrepreneurs cultivate beyond the office to take care of themselves.
If you’re struggling to keep up in the dog-eat-dog startup sector or feeling the stress of managing employees, it’s time to cultivate sustainable habits. The rest of the world may judge you by what you produce, but you need to protect the things that energize and revitalize you.
Here’s what successful entrepreneurs do beyond the office walls:
They’re Early Risers
One of the most common habits top entrepreneurs have deemed critical to their out-of-office life: being an early riser. Getting up before everyone else isn’t about squeezing more productive hours into the day — many of these same professionals go to bed early.
But many find that getting up early enables them to work without distractions. It also means they have a chance to arrive and settle in at the office before everyone else. They’re ready to support staff as soon as they walk through the door.
They’re Fueled by Fitness
Another top habit of successful entrepreneurs is that they make exercise a priority. Without exercise, it’s easy to get worn down, but working out contributes to mental clarity, stamina, and overall wellness.
Even if it’s just half an hour at the gym or a quick jog, committing some time to work out each day is a surprising professional game-changer.
They Eat Right
No one’s saying that professional powerhouses don’t ever indulge. But just like they get enough sleep and exercise, they also make healthy eating a core part of their routine. It’s important, even when it isn’t easy.
After all, eating healthy typically means doing a lot of prep, but successful entrepreneurs are nothing if not great delegators. That might mean outsourcing meal prep to nutrition pros to ensure there are always healthy meals and snacks on hand. It’s easy to avoid a midday slump when your meals are balanced by experts.
They’re Explorers and Adventurers
Eating, sleeping, and exercising are healthy habits anyone can cultivate. They’re also broadly beneficial, even if they go a long way toward fueling entrepreneurs.
Temperamentally speaking, however, entrepreneurs make the pursuit of adventure an intentional habit. They seek out new experiences; novelty opens them up to new ideas and helps foster growth. You can’t be a disruptor and an innovator without taking risks.
They Guard Their ‘Me Time‘
You’ll hear this from creatives of all stripes — artists, writers, entrepreneurs, fashion designers: If you want to do great work on the clock, you have to protect your off-the-clock time.
This can take many forms, from setting time aside to read every day to taking a technology sabbath once a week and really disconnecting. Ultimately, the key is leaving room to renew and recharge. In a culture that celebrates pushing yourself until you’re at the edge and then taking part in small, indulgent acts of self-care, setting aside “me time” before you need it is revolutionary.
Entrepreneurship isn’t just about having a great idea; it’s about developing a sustainable set of habits that will enable you to keep creating. One idea is just that — an idea — and that’s only the beginning. Without healthy daily habits, you’re bound to hit a wall fast. But if you take care of yourself, you’ll also be able to take care of business.