Of all the successful entrepreneurs in the world, the most successful are those who struggle every day to make time for themselves. Whether it’s fitness for the body or fitness for the mind, it’s still a form of exercise in itself.
There are some things that an entrepreneur does differently than someone who doesn’t. This includes the methods they use to take care of themselves. I became an entrepreneur in my early twenties and it was a tough start. I realized that I needed to be in peak physical and mental shape every day, and that’s where my 2 decades of yoga training kicked in.
As a yogi and entrepreneur, I would say that many things in my life have been easy to accomplish because I have yoga by my side. I have experienced its physical, mental, emotional and spiritual benefits firsthand. That’s why I firmly believe that yoga can become the future of health care. To keep this article short, I’ll narrow down the benefits to 5 obvious ones.
- Meditating feels like home.
After a long day of outward-facing conversations, pitches, and interactions with people from different walks of life, meditation feels like the only time you can “be with yourself.” This allows you to reflect on your decisions of the day and prepare for the decisions that are yet to come. It allows you to let go of the fear of being overwhelmed. It can’t be easy to always make the right decisions.
Recommended activity: Simple gratitude meditation to start with.
- It helps you relieve stress.
That anxious monster everyone talks about, “stress” is so misunderstood. Stress in moderate amounts is good. Well, it’s not called stress then. It’s just an urgency. Yoga helps to regulate this. It teaches your body to preserve self and mind at such times. Burnout and exhaustion do no one any good. With yoga, you can train your body and mind to handle the increase in heart rate. It literally overhauls your breathing techniques. They don’t just say “breathe, breathe, breathe” to people who are stressed. You mean business.
Recommended activity: Forward bends, cat-cow stretching, bridge pose are some poses that help with stress.
- Increase in brain functions
Excel spreadsheets, interviews, board meetings, flights and daily check-ins. That can be a lot of work for ONE person. It’s not easy to be in the best of spirits all the time. Or is it? I’ve found that sometimes I feel particularly down because maybe I didn’t move enough that day. And it could be something as simple as going for a walk, swimming, or doing yoga. I prefer yoga because it combines asana practice (which gives my body some much-needed stretching and circulation), breathing (which gives my body some much-needed oxygenation), and mindfulness or meditation (which gives me a calm to focus on everything else during the time tackle) combined I put more emphasis on blood flow and oxygenation because my favorite asana is the headstand, which literally changes my “perspective” on things.
Recommended activity: Guided and assisted inversions. Start small with Downward Facing Dog, assisted Viprit Karni and poses like this.
- enhancing immunity
It may feel like I’ll keep coming back to my best physical condition, but that’s ultimately what it boils down to. Imagine you’re in a meeting and have a raging migraine, or you’re making an important decision while taking medication for a cold or cough. It just doesn’t feel right. And it’s not like you’re superhuman. But can you be the best human version of yourself? Absolutely. I find that my yoga practice has allowed me to be healthier. From a sickly child who gets hospitalized every few days, to an adult who knows exactly what to do when they have a headache or have had a bad night’s sleep. It’s been a long journey and I’ve learned to create little routines that help me. Aside from the physical benefits of better lung capacity, better breathing, better muscle and bone strength, I’ve also been able to practice self-confidence. So it’s easy to predict how I’ll feel after accidentally skipping a meal or sleeping an hour less.
Recommended activity: Pranayamas like Anulom Vilom, Bhramari, Ujjayi are easy to practice and Surya Namaskars are the simplest and most basic form of movement that has overall immune system benefits
- Get that boost of creativity.
After all, as an entrepreneur, you are not just the founder or the CEO or the managing director. You will automatically become the troubleshooter and problem solver for your company. “Thinking around the corner” is almost a must. Yoga allows you to focus on your mind and breath. If you’re like me, you’ve definitely experienced waking up in the middle of the night with an idea and writing it down on a pad by your side. Or send yourself a voice recording. It’s the same logic. When your conscious mind sleeps, your subconscious wakes up and solves problems that you couldn’t solve in your waking life.
In yoga we always bring the mind to the present moment, never to the past or future. This allows you to simply “BE”.
Recommended activity: Practice Yog Nidra before sleep.
The views expressed above are the author’s own.
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