Fierce and fit: Healthy habits to boost your business

We all know that being an entrepreneur often means coping with constant connectivity and high stress levels.

But it's more important than ever to take care of your mind and body if you want to reach peak professional and personal performance. 

FEW entrepreneurs share their insight on how to keep calm and carry on, drawing from a mix of mindfulness, exercise and nutrition. 

Catherine T, Founder of Pura Vida

"As an entrepreneur, my days are busy and often unplanned with last-minute spontaneous meetings. Having a healthy, active and balanced lifestyle helps tremendously in helping me to manage a busy work schedule."

"A healthy mind and body helps me to focus, think better, feel less stress and generally be more effective in my work. At the end of the day, for me it's all about being in a positive frame of mind and feeling good about myself and what I'm trying to achieve."

"I like to start my days early... I exercise daily and try to walk everywhere. I mostly eat healthy but it's all about balance and I set aside time to relax in the form of hiking or cooking at home.

"Exercise and having relaxation time help me de-stress -- this helps rejuvenate my mind so I can focus more clearly on my work."

Nealy Fischer, Founder and Director of The Flexible Chef

"Eating well ensures steady energy all day -- also not overeating is crucial so you avoid lethargy and stomach pains from eating the wrong foods or too much of anything."

"I always make sure to eat clean and always have hot water in the morning. I am sure to not use any electronic devices an hour before bed"

"Taking care of ourselves is the key to taking care of our employees, customers and families. The benefits abound and the results speak for themselves: A healthy mind resides in a healthy body."

"I enjoy walking meetings, yoga and fitness. Walking meetings help me increase work productivity and creative flow particularly when we are talking about new ideas."

"Getting outdoors when possible also helps break up monotony of working at a desk and helps you gain mental clarity. Keeps lethargy at bay and the pounds away!"

"Yoga practice -- with a combined meditative element -- is a great way to get centered and unplug."

"We are so consumed by devices and being responsive all day-other than the great physical and emotional benefits it can simply help you focus without distraction."

Kate March, Founder and Creative Director of I AM

"Ultimately, I wholeheartedly and theoretically understand the importance and value of a quiet and clear mind; healthy eating; exercise; and wellness in general."

"And of course, some of my best ideas come when I am in a state of genuine balance and when mind, body, and emotions are all working well with each other."

"As an entrepreneur pouring time, energy, and passion into a growing company as well as creating new work as an artist, practically, I find it stressful to think about habits of mindfulness and wellness or achieving perfect equilibrium."

"Instead I strive for being as present as I can in each moment and recognizing when I need rest."

"The practice of presence keeps me connected to my body, my mind, and my emotions -- so even if I'm feeling overwhelmed or eating a pound of chocolate or deciding to drink wine rather than do a yoga class, I try not to feel bad about it."

"By embracing the imbalances and the 'unhealthy' as much as the 'healthy' I discover more self- acceptance and this is when my work/leadership shines. For me, that's wellness."

"Being in nature and near the water brings me the deepest sense of joy and recalibration."

Vivienne Tang, Founder of Destination Deluxe and Co-Founder of The Sanctuary

"Having a mindfulness or a meditation practice is so important, particularly if you’re an entrepreneur who’s putting in a lot of extra hours to make the business work."

"Especially during the start-up phase, many entrepreneurs burn the candle at both ends. It is vital to nourish yourself with the right foods and to keep self-doubt at bay with regular meditation to support your being on a physical, emotional, mental and spiritual level."

"I try to meditate and juice every day. Obviously that’s easier said than done with a hectic schedule, but I really try to set aside time to connect with myself and what’s going on in my life, what’s triggering me, and so on."

"After each meditation I also do visualization work. I try to work out two to three times a week and I walk a lot."

"In fact, I walk everywhere these days. I also see holistic practitioners from time to time. I think it’s important to be able to ask for help."

"My barre classes are awesome as they really take my mind off my problems. Even if it’s just for an hour, I feel mentally rejuvenated, relaxed and recharged afterwards."

TRICIA YAP, CO-FOUNDER OF THE WARRIOR ACADEMY

"As entrepreneurs and founders of start ups, we wear many different hats and take on many different roles in the business, and because we are owners, work sometimes doesn’t stop when we get home."

"As a result, we are often juggling different things, running around constantly and often very stressed out. Finding some 'me' time, whether it is to work out, meditate, do something relaxing, is very essential to not just stay sane but to also stay effective as managers and leaders." 

"I find the time to workout at least 3-4 times a week and during my training time -- my phone is far away, I do not take calls, and I completely focus on what I am doing."

"On weeks that I feel really tired and unmotivated, I grab a training buddy. If I’ve had a tough and challenging day where my stress levels are through the roof, I take a break and go out for an explorative walk around the neighborhood without my phone. This helps me to destress and take my mind off work, so that I can get back to it fresh."

"Sleep is also important and while I do not sleep adequately during the week, I make sure that I have a catchup sleep and lie in on weekends."  

"I definitely find a massive difference after a workout, a walk or just some time out. Especially on very stressful days, it helps me take a step back, breathe and then re-assess the situation without negative emotions or stressful thoughts clouding my decisions."