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When you hear stories of how great businesses were made, it usually idealizes individuals who’ve poured their mind, body, and soul into their careers, making every imaginable sacrifice to achieve financial wealth. It takes a lot of sweat equity to start and run a successful business, but many have learned the hard way success shouldn’t come at the expense of personal health. Especially when you’re the founder of a healthcare startup. When you work towards achieving optimal health, you will grow faster than before.

Developing a healthier lifestyle has helped me run more than one successful business because I’m not constantly shrouded by stress or struggling to fight off illness. With optimal health and a rested mind, you can reach further and perform better in both business and life.

Here’s how to strike a balance between work and your personal life to give yourself the care you need without neglecting your demanding startup.

Address your personal needs.

You need to stay healthy to make the right decisions for your company. A pilot wouldn’t fly a plane with an empty tank. Unfortunately, it’s all too often a budding entrepreneur or dedicated career man will “crash and burn” because they aren’t getting the regular nourishing meals and restorative sleep they need. If that’s you, you can nourish a thriving career with the following healthy practices that will lead you towards optimal health:

  • Schedule when (and what) you eat. Lunch can seem like a luxury when you’re running between seeing patients, managing staff and communicating with vendors. That’s why you may need to schedule meals, rather than just waiting until you have the time to eat. So block the time out on your calendar. If preparing meals is a challenge, use a healthy meal delivery service or block out a few hours to make balanced meals for the entire week. Making wholesome foods convenient to eat will help you avoid surviving on a diet of vending machine snacks and fast food. Right now I am doing the keto diet, but will be changing to the Mediterranean diet for my long term eating habits. Check out my Free 7 Day Meal Plan to get started on your healthy eating journey.
  • Start your day with “me” time. Entrepreneurs and leaders know your business will never give you a day off. So build some quiet personal time into your morning routine. This can mean having breakfast with family, meditating for 10 minutes, enjoying a quick workout, or reading a few pages from a favorite book. Just a few minutes of restorative activity can make a huge difference in your day.
  • Keep your body active. You may not have time to regularly hit the gym, but that doesn’t mean physical exercise is off the table. You can still incorporate quick workouts that fit your schedule. Download a personal fitness phone application, search for workout routines on YouTube, or take a walk outside between appointments. Even better —encourage your employees or coworkers to join you to promote a healthier workplace. You can always start off with more low impact workouts and gradually make them more intense.
  • Keep your mind sharp. Your brain should be treated like a muscle —never stop learning or creating new ideas. You can listen to TED Talks, audiobooks, or business podcasts during your commute. Read a stimulating book before bed. Giving your mind the attention it needs will make you a better businessman.

Set reasonable goals in and out of work.

Goal setting is essential for success, but only if you are setting goals you know you can achieve. Set yourself up for success with the S.M.A.R.T. goal method, which stands for Specific, Measurable, Achievable, Relevant and Time-based. Goal setting is what will help you run a successful business.

  • A specific goal means stating exactly what you hope to accomplish, so you know what your target is. If you don’t decide what you’re aiming for, the target will always move and you’ll find your motivation wanes.
  • A measurable goal is quantifiable. By providing numbers or percentages, you can decide the scale of your target.
  • An achievable goal uses your current circumstances to determine what’s realistic so you can achieve success. Once you meet a realistic goal you can set a new one!
  • A relevant goal meets the current needs or serves a corporate objective. You don’t want to spend your valuable time on something that isn’t a top priority. It may seem unnecessary to state that, but even the best entrepreneurs are often distracted by trivial time wasters.
  • A goal that includes a time frame provides you with a projected due date. The purpose is to help you prioritize this goal among the other things you need to accomplish. Some goals may be more urgent than others.

For more SMART goal tips, you can download Dr. Shufeldt’s free Smart Goal Planner.

If you constantly feel in over your head, it might be time to hire help so that every responsibility isn’t falling on your shoulders. Read more about hiring staff you can trust here.

Organize your bases.

Both at work and at home, a clean space inspires a clear head. When you can never find the right supplies or have trouble navigating your inbox, it’s time to reorganize. You won’t regret it, and it will save you time in the long-run. This may mean hiring someone or delegating tasks to your staff.

You’ll know you’re doing something right when colleagues and visitors take note of how efficiently your office runs or how tidy you always keep your desk. Now is the time to get on track- achieve your optimal health to be able to run a successful business!