“When you are an entrepreneur, your health determines the success of your business.” -Women Who Cowork cofounder, Laura Shook Guzman

Overwhelm for coworking space operators is very real.

While you’re taking care of your members, your space and your business, who’s taking care of you?

I regularly see and hear community managers and coworking space owners struggling with the emotions, stresses, physical todos and mental flame-juggling that comes with running a space.

While coworking spaces are increasingly focused on wellness, operators still struggle. The Women Who Cowork directory, with dozens of women-owned and operated spaces that offer wellness amenities, provides a glimpse into the future of coworking. 

But member wellness and operator wellness go hand-in-hand. You’re not at your best if you’re overwhelmed. It’s that simple.

On episode 93 of the Women in the Business Arena podcast, Women Who Cowork cofounder Laura Shook Guzman spoke with Sonya Stattmann about the three phases of overwhelm and how to manage it before, during and after it flares up.

Here are 26 tips they shared to help you manage overwhelm so you can be at your best for your life, business, space and members.

1. Stop pushing. You won’t break through to a place of balance by pushing yourself harder. Slow down and take care of yourself.

2. Make self-care habitual to prevent—or reduce—overwhelm.

3. Take five minutes to breathe deeply.

4. Go out into nature.

5. Set reminders on your phone or computer to take breaks.

6. Recognize when you’re approaching overwhelm and do some self-care.

7. Rest.

8. Determine your priorities and put everything else aside until later.

9. Be gentle with yourself.

10. Learn from your overwhelm. Where are you out of balance? This can help you avoid—or better navigate—overwhelm next time it comes up.

11. Simplify. Focus on one thing at a time.

12. Meditate.

13. Exercise.

14. Go for a walk to clear your mind.

15. Replace fear with compassion—for yourself and others.

16. Use positive language—with yourself and others.

17. Get curious about the things that intimidate you.

18. Focus on your breath.

19. Put your legs up against a wall. The body recognizes it’s in a new orientation and pays more attention to what’s happening instead of just spinning.

20. Connect with water. Go to a restroom, turn on the cold water then switch back and forth between cold and hot water. This is a reset button for the nervous system. You can also go swimming or go to a floatation tank.

21. Shift your attention outside of yourself. Focus on other people or the details of your surroundings.

22. Brain dump. Make a list of all the things you need to do. Then you can logically deal with them.

23. Play.

24. Create a vision board.

25. Journal. What led to overwhelm? Reflect on your experience and how you can move forward.

26. Get support. If you experience chronic overwhelm, find a coach, therapist, mentor or guide to help and support you. You’re not alone and you don’t have to figure the overwhelm out on your own. 

One of the absolute pleasures and most valuable aspects of Women Who Cowork retreats is the physical, mental and emotional reset that takes place. Join cofounders Laura Shook Guzman and Iris Kavanagh, as well as members of the Women Who Cowork community for the upcoming Reignite Your Fire retreat in Toronto in partnership with GCUC Canada.

Become a Women Who Cowork member to take advantage of all the resources and offerings. Be sure to list your space on the Women Who Cowork directory, which displays women-owned and operated spaces around the world, including wellness-focused spaces.

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