For the past eight days, I’ve been battling what seems like a never-ending head cold. Running a company and overcoming illness are not compatible – ask anyone who owns a business. But, one thing is certain… it does offer perspective! Here are three things I learned while I was sick.
The world doesn’t end because we’re sick. Yes, business owners have a lot to do, but guess what? Nobody died because I had to postpone or cancel a meeting. Clients weren’t upset because tasks were completed a day later than usual. Contractors weren’t anxious at my lack of an instantaneous response to their emails. The key here is communication. I simply let everyone know the situation, and because it’s rare that I am held up, most were extremely understanding and accommodating.
It’s OK to ask for help. I don’t know where I would be without my team, especially my husband who has to live with me! 🙂 He took my calls, distributed my content to clients and even attended and presented at a meeting, in my place. He ran errands get me cold medicine, tissues, and popsicles. He waited on me when I was too sick to get out of bed. He also put up with my whining like a baby during the first two days of a sore throat. At first I felt guilty, but he was happy to help, which made me feel relieved. It was OK. Everything was going to be OK.
We must take the time to get better. Sickness is often a response from our body telling us that we need to take a break. For weeks before I got sick, I was burning the candle at both ends. I felt that twinge of pain in my throat for two months and loaded up on Airborne, which only delayed the inevitable. I needed to slow down – and I was finally forced with what hit me last week. I am still exhausted, but I’ve taken many naps and slept full nights (except for the coughing). I know I needed this rest and I plan to ease into this week, as I recover.
My good friend and fellow business owner, Jennifer, had pneumonia for a combined 20 weeks last year. She told me the same things that I learned this past week. Business owners know that the show much go on, but at what cost? If you’re feeling weary, listen to your body. I promise the world won’t end! Ask for help and take the time to get better.