Lifestyle, Metallica, and Self-Care for Entrepreneurs

by on Feb 03 2017

I just listened to a podcast with James Hetfield (the singer and rhythm guitarist for Metallica) and was amazed at the similarities between staying sane as a rock star and staying healthy as an entrepreneur. We’re not all that different, and it comes down to choices…

Blog Summary:

As online marketers, we get to build our lifestyle as we build our business. But it’s all too easy to lose sight of building and maintaining your lifestyle as you get caught up in the business…

Here are some of the tips and insights on how to cultivate an amazing work/life balance:

  • Running an online business offers so many freedoms: when to work, how much to work, who to work with, who we serve… it’s our choice to capitalize on these freedoms – or neglect them (1:07);
  • We are creators – we get to create our business, our lifestyle… and much more (1:32);
  • If you’re going to be a creator, you have to take time to recharge – being in “full-on” mode constantly will cause real problems… including insight about a challenge that many entrepreneurs share with members of the band Metallica (1:44);
  • How to grow your business by practicing ever-increasing levels of “self-care” (3:08);
  • The vital role that self-care plays in the longevity of your business success – how to avoid flash-in-the-pan “success”… and go the distance instead (3:42).

49 Comments

  • Great post Jeff, love the scenery. I like to get on a bike and just ride for self care. Yep, it’s a bit strange but I love it.

  • Adama says:

    That was a great video Jeff, thank you! I am an artist (singer-songwriter), a single mum of two, and now starting out as an entrepreneur. I can totally relate to having the need to recharge. I feel that on two levels. One as a mother and one as an artist. I have more to give as a creative, a mother, and an entrepreneur when I take the time to meditate first thing in the morning, take the time to make music that I love, time to go out into the fresh air, etc. I look forward to your next video!

  • Frank says:

    I head to Daytona Beach, or Aruba to hit the ocean to recharge. The smell of sand and saltwater does a great job on me mentally Thx for your weekly blog Jeff!!

  • James says:

    Totally with you on this, Jeff. Lorrie and I are off to eat fresh fish with our feet in the sand at the beach (obviously not in the US) this lunch time. Taking a break from your virtual launch club event, very intense, sorry I fell asleep in the last minute (timezone excuse!). Clients demanding work done tomorrow and concentration needed tonight. But must recharge anyway.

  • Thank you, Jeff a great video! I’m just starting to live a free life. And very interested in this topic for me.

  • Jim Perry says:

    Thanks Jeff. I’m just starting out in the online world after working a very unbalanced life in medicine for 20 years, and I’m trying to balance between the business, time with my family, and something just for me. The last one tends to get left out. I’m simultaneously treating stage 4 colon cancer, so a lot of “recharging” time is actually recovery time – time spend trying to get energy back, minimize symptoms from surgeries and chemo, etc. But I try to make sure I’m spending quality time with my kids and wife as recharging, as I know that is what will be remembered as being important.

  • Cathy Hay says:

    Your friends are right Jeff, this is the part that’s the most eye-opening, the most contrary to the prevailing culture, and the most vital to keep reminding us about! Thank you! The more I make daily walks, yoga and meditation a priority, the better I work. It’s not always possible, and I keep falling back and having to re-commit, but that in itself *is* the practice… continually coming back to the breath *is* the win, I think. But the hardest self care practice of all to justify is probably the one I need the most – I started this business so that I could spend a large amount of my time sewing, and I still struggle mightily to make any time for it at all. Empowering other people to get creative has to start with my example, and I’m in the centre of the same uncomfortable journey my avatar is on, finding the courage to carve out time for self-care in the form of creativity. When I get it right, I’ll be better able to pay it forward.

  • Mury Sutherlin says:

    Jeff, your lifestyle-focus on business has always really struck a chord with me. Thanks for the additional insight. I definitely like to get out into the outdoors, whether it be camping, skiing, MTN biking, you name it.

    Have a great week!

  • Stephen says:

    Thanks Jeff l. Use something l call my time 5am until 7am l tune. Into the birds awakening and talk to my soul l find this works for me

  • Philip Fortenberry says:

    I’m a wilderness adventurer, too, Jeff. I love hiking across wilderness areas, archery big game hunting, particularly for elk. I also love going fishing in the ocean out of my kayak.

  • Povilas says:

    Jeff, that is great! Thank you!
    Btw, when you said Jim thats sound little strange as i thought you ar a fan of Metallica :).
    Jeff – Jim – James ;).
    And nothing else matters 😉

  • Well, I certainly do not live a “civilian” lifestyle – I fly around and visit great places (London for 3 weeks now, Abu Dhabi for a few weeks next, and I’ll see you in Phoenix soon). I teach a course with “Rock Star” in the title, I have friends most places to do fun things with, and people think I live a rock star life,and in some ways I do but no one realizes how much work I actually do. For example this weekend is absolutely a work weekend, despite being downtown London, and a great many weeks are full on 80+ hours.
    I don’t do this perfectly, but I work out to try and stay healthy – hit the gym in the AM today, and going to squeeze a walk in this afternoon. Ran yesterday. I also often work less hard and in relaxing places, especially at the beach (Love Maine!). When I can I am likely to blow off a day and go fish or bike or ski withour much planning. I have some semblance of life balance, just broken into big chunks.
    And yeah, it’s tough when I return home sometimes – re-entry to the civilian world, who understand 9-5+, live for weekends, and for whom travel isn’t a core and essential part of their life

  • Danielle says:

    re-charge: turn off the laptop. go to bed EARLY…let my adrenals turn OFF …slow walks with no one around. no phone calls on the weekend.

    My business is like a little baby. I am so excited for myself. Last week, I GOT FOUR PEOPLE to sign up under me in one week! (baby steps) I felt truly excited for me and THEM. After listening to Stedman Graham talk on you tube video (my dreams of him led me to search his talks- one in particular he was in Florida in 2016 giving a talk saying something like ‘IF YOU DON’T TAKE CONTROL, SOMEONE ELSE WILL. . .the question I ask you, is ‘what was your program? How do you BREAK OUT OF THE PROGRAM?.. ” I recorded his talk and listen to it obsessively. ‘HOW DO I BUY MYSELF BACK?” Love his talk.
    Metallica: I wrote a little about that in my book a few months ago (not yet out), the song ‘NOTHING ELSE MATTERS’ that my ex-boyfriend literally recorded on a tape cassette in 1998, that is going in my book

  • Mandy Perry says:

    This was so timely! I went from making $400 a week (for 10 years) to launching my first group at $30k launch all in a 6 month time frame.
    It’s been discombobulating and your words are oxygen today! Thank you for this Jeff.

  • Very true… This was my big plan for 2017 get more time for myself …Playing guitar- just chilling…

  • Gail Simard says:

    My situation is almost the opposite of yours. I live alone (with my dog) in a secluded spot on a beautiful river in NB, Canada. I enjoy nature on a daily basis. I work online and interact with people from all over the world everyday. I love it. But my recharge is getting on an airplane and heading to a live event. Last year I flew to California 7 times. It’s where I get my charge of meeting new and old friends and being in that high energy. A real social boost plus I learn a ton. Then its wonderful to come home again.
    Loved your video. You actually have more snow than the East Coast of Canada lol.
    PS. I’m a Metallica fan and loved the story.

  • Eva says:

    I totally understand you Jeff !

    I had no choice, it was a necesity to go and live further and further away from busy cities, humans, traffic, noices etc.
    For over a decade now I live where nobody else wanted to live…away from civilisation and just surrounded by animals and nature…
    For me it’s back to basics and let nature heal my mind and body.
    The place to find yourself and just be yourself.
    I don t think I could adapt to another life, or at least …I don t want too.
    Sometimes I don t even go out to civilisation for a week and longer, hahaha and that is fine with me.
    So just keep doing what is best for you Jeff, that is what is important !!!

  • David says:

    In the end it comes down to ‘work smarter, not just harder’, I guess. Because otherwise one will stay in the hamster wheel forever, no matter of entrepreneur, wantrepreneur or employee. There’s always a lot of work to do, especially when you run your own business. It never ends, and it’s a big trap if one isn’t careful. But I do believe that especially in the beginning we need to hustle, to get up to speed. But we must not forget to take at least ‘mini breaks’, e.g. the weekend, or a day, or some hours at least – whatever floats each ones’s boat to feel rested. And being passionate and having a mission with what we do is also important in order not to burn out too quickly. Just my 5 cents after about 5 years of being active in the online entrepreneurial business, while at the same time working in a regular 9-5 job (which I keep mainly to respect my wife’s wish to do so for a little more time). I am still not there where I want to be in terms of lifestyle. But at least it’s a conscious choice of mine, so I am in a more or less state of balance. “All good things take their time”, as the saying goes. I don’t fret about not being able, yet, to live the lifestyle I’d like to have (like go out for trail running more, and most importantly, to find my ‘big hairy audacious goal’ aka ‘definite chief aim’). All will be good 🙂

  • Aaron Koral says:

    Hey Jeff – great video! I completely agree with you – self care truly is both a choice and a necessity in business. The way I take care of myself is with daily meditation each morning, walking for 20 minutes at lunch time and getting out of the house on weekends with MeetUp groups to have a little fun. Doing these three things helps keep me present, creative and focused when I’m in “business” mode. Love you Jeff – keep up the great work!

  • Hi Jeff. Nice reminder. I also need daily rejuvenation as I build this business. Our small ranch is perfect. Winter is harsh. I bound out of bed early, work on some writing at the kitchen table and watch the sun come up. Then, for my heavenly break, I bundle up and go fork hay to the horses, make sure the chickens, dogs, and cats, have feed and water, check on our feeder calves and walk out into the pasture to move cows from feeding to feeding. There is often more work to do, but that’s my minimum on a daily basis. This time is paradise to me, and I miss not the days of being in a “work” situation around a lot of people. I am just starting out with my new business and only quit my job as a school teacher a couple of years ago. On reflection, I realize how the constant, daily, intense interaction with people was so draining to me. I can now stay at home for days on end, just working in this business, tending to the farm, and not seeing another human being other than my husband. How did I not know that all those years? Can’t wait to grow this business more. It opens up an entire new world of possibility. Thanks!

  • Andre EWERT says:

    I like the Urban Wilderness too….especially on a lazy Sunday when everybody is out of town..Leave me the City ..lol..Self- care, self love, more intentionality, after care , it’s all good..Thanks for your Inspirational Videos Jeff.Just finished attending Sister Giant..and I find such events quite nourishing for my Soul. Thank you Marianne williamson. It weas a Great Event with Great speakers, great attendees. If we give thousands of people Support and Inspiration, it is obvious that we need Support and Inspiration also. Many Creatives atre Bipolar..don’t ask me why..I love hanging out with the Crazies that go to Burning Man, Contact in the Desert at Joshua Tree , usually people that are curious, playful and bold…and that end up changing the world and their business and lifestyle.
    <

  • SHERI BERKE says:

    Thank you for the reminder on the importance of self-care. It’s like they say on the airplane, in the event of an emergency put your own oxygen mask on first. Without doing that stuff, we become useless to work with others!

  • Thanks Jeff for the insight; it’s so true……leaving all the noise and distractions will benefit anyone who is creative! Especially as entrepreneurs we need to take care of ourselves so we can recharge, focus and maintain balance on what matters to us. We moved to Colorado more than 30 years ago and never looked back!
    Being outdoors hiking, biking, camping or just walking the dog on a brisk sunny morning enables a soulful connection and freedom on a deeper level that is a rare find.
    We are so blessed to have this lifestyle!

  • Brad Lenart says:

    It’s JAMES! Lol! Big Metallica fan here and I have also toured in a band. Yes it is very similar. Thanks Jeff. : )

  • It’s definitely something I forget to do (hustle, hustle, hustle!), but absolutely notice a difference in productivity and creativity when I take time to go hiking and get out in nature. That’s my happy place. Anywhere with woods or a body of water to take my SUP out!

  • Helle says:

    It is so true this. Ironically enough Metalica just canceled one of their concerts because James got sick. Bad luck. However, I think it is really quite important to treat oneself a bit like an elite athlete, as we do need to perform really well, so getting out in nature, eating well, sleeping well and exercising is very vital. I choose to live in the countryside myself because I want to be able to take a walk in the woods when I want to.

  • Robyn says:

    Thank you for this one, Jeff! As a health coach, I see too many people that don’t take that necessary time to re-charge and it takes its toll, for sure! I live in the Tampa Bay area of Florida and I am so grateful to have the ocean and beaches so close. I get there as much as possible, to ground myself with a walk on the beach, water lapping my feet or, in the summer months, I paddle board with my best friend. Nothing like being on the water, that close and connected to nature. I also highly recommend volunteering! I dedicate one day per week to working at Clearwater Marine Aquarium with the rescued and rehabbing sea turtles. I cannot tell you how much more I get from them, than give to them. Spread the love!

  • John English says:

    I live in the mountains as well and the way I recharge and live the lifestyle is I ski 2 to 4 mornings per week. Thanks, Jeff!

  • Brian Davis says:

    Thanks Jeff. I find it so hard to carve out some time for recharging at this point. Though I do wonder if it’s just an excuse that I don’t have time. I am transitioning from “normal” work to getting my business online and structured in a way that I can scale it. I currently live in a very remote part of northern Canada and it is expensive to live here. Plus the population is such that you almost have no choice but to do multiple things to make ends meet. Even in brick and mortar business here you can’t focus on a core product or service bundle or you just won’t have enough business to stay afloat. So I have my business which I have been building for the last 5 years, managed to keep that kind of going. It’s gone back to more of a side business now. I work 36-48 hours a week for a government agency, 10-15 hours/wk as a territory manager for a large corporation as well. So that’s kind of like 3 jobs. But I also make custom apparel and basic signage and do a little graphic and web design on the side. Add all that to trying to help out my local church where I chair a program committee and two young kids with a wife that works full time and there not so much recharging time left. But. I am. Trying to restructure things now. And hoping to sell my house here and head to a less remote place this summer. I guess my point is the video gave me a little reminder of why I need to change things up. So here’s to restructuring, embracing that lifestyle I’ve been dreaming about and for goodness sakes, get to taking better care of my physical health so I can stick around and spend time with those kiddos. Thanks Jeff.

  • Marjorie Staal says:

    I don’t recharge as much as I should. But I watched you just now and it really hit home. I feel quite stuck in life right now, but recharging is first even before I can create anything. My dream is to become a parenting coach on line. But i just can’t seem to get the courage to start. As usual your words were perfect.

  • Carol Dunlop says:

    My recharging consists of spending time with my husband and grandkids. Nothing better than being around the kids and taking in everything they do. Love it. Definitely have to bow to self-catering.

  • Gregg C Hardin says:

    Hi Jeff! Great videos! I recharge by going to church and taking half hour walks. I get inspired by what the pastor says and the walks let me disengage a little, with music from my mp3 player. I take walks in a variety of places. The malls where I live have a feature I previously hadn’t known about; they let you into the mall early and you can walk before the stores are open in the morning. This helps me to socialize a bit and not be worried about the business of the mall when the stores are open. They call it mall walking. Perhaps you have heard of it?

  • Steve Young says:

    Love this video Jeff! I’m a huge fan of incorporating self love with impacting the world through my efforts. I appreciate you being so authentic. I remember seeing you meditate in the mornings on Necker living your message to the world. AWESOME sauce!

    This year, I’m launching 2 new ventures. One will change how people work (we’re going to make working at your computer healthy with a completely new design for your workstation). The other is to give fitness professionals a software to help them make a bigger impact on their client’s lives. Exciting year!

  • Jeff love the journey find time to recharge thinking what next Artist love Portraits fascinating to do . Have small business face painting , throws for sofas , wall hangings other natural products Soap, and Magic Castles for Kiddies so donated them for sick kiddies many hours work of love .i received the most wonderful letter from HOSPITAL AFTER MAKING THEM FOR KIDDIES .NOW WHAT I HAVE DONE IS UNDERCOAT PINK FOR CANCERS little ones get, so need to find how many in other hospital in town to donate the rest s i was working on them until 1am /2am each day so they look fun .now eave them blank so kiddies can use creative skills Painting or draw which ever they want maybe write .thank you for sharing i feel like deciding whether to reopen shop or just travel .

  • Ben Lynch ND says:

    Right on Jeff. I hear you. The bigger your business becomes, the more self care you need. This is a hard one to wrap your head around but it’s a must. All that work to go into growth of a business to support your goals – and those goals are varied for folks. For me, one of my main personal goals is to spend more time with my family. As a father of three amazing young boys and married for 16 years, it’s key that I get out and interact with them – quality time.

    I own two very successful companies and it takes a toll mentally and physically.

    I could push it harder and make more – but that’s not my goal.

    What I do is:
    – every September, my assistant blocks out my calendar based on what is on my kids’ school calendar days off. When they have holidays, so does Dad. It’s that simple.
    – Summers are home and mostly dedicated to family
    – I bought a home for our family which supports our lifestyle – on a lake, next to 100 acre + state parks, hiking, mountain biking and 1.25 hr drive away from great skiing. Going skiing tomorrow with my boys – on a Monday – after a phone call with my publisher and ghostwriter.

    I shape my business around my family – not shape my family around my business.

    My business is to support my customers’ life – absolutely.

    But if I don’t support my life and my families – then I cannot support my customers.

    • Ashley says:

      Love this! My husband also takes the days off that our kids have off also!! Keep it up! I’m sure they will/do appreciate you as an active father!!

  • I left your blog and went and got out my knitting! One thing I love and never make time for! i have spent the last five years of my life working every available minute on my business and trying to help a very ill daughter get effective medical care. i have been out of work for three months due to an ankle surgery; as I go back, Jeff, I want my life back! I want a way to earn money that does not cost me every minute of every day. I want to be able to live a life of joy and achievement. I am hoping you can teach me how to do that!

  • josh dickinson says:

    Thanks Jeff, another great video and reminder! Yes, I try and get out on the bike and way from it all whenever I can

  • Excellent advice Jeff. xxx

  • Kim White says:

    Thanks Jeff, I went for a 3 hour snow shoeing hike yesterday to prepare for this big week ahead. Keep up the great work, cheers, Kim

  • Ashley says:

    I love all your videos! Thank you so much for staying consistent with them 🙂 they are sooo relevant to daily living as an entrepreneur! Thank you!
    I recharge with dancing 💃🏼 and hiking!! I would assume the idea of recharging can be used in any field that takes tremendous mental energy! from stay at home moms to sales people to bank clerks… working with people is hard and most people could use/ should have a mental recharge!

    Quick questions: do you try to put your “recharge” time in your schedule or just do it when needed? Also, how do you hold your phone SO STILL while recording?!?! 😂😂

  • Josie Tytus says:

    ‘If I’m going to go work really, really hard to create a business that supports the lifestyle of my dreams, then I might as well have the lifestyle of my dreams.’

    Yes! It takes an effort to take the time for yourself, to stop long enough to enjoy life along the way to success. It’s far too easy for the determined entrepreneur to remain in the busy work of business and never look up and around to see anything else. This is a great reminder, Jeff. Thank you. You model it well.

  • Mathew Peachment says:

    Great thoughts Jeff! It took me a while in my own life to realize I need time to myself and in the outdoors. I was amazed to find how refreshing for me it is to get out into the mountains for a hike or the wilderness to relax.

  • Love this video and how you take the time to recharge like that. I love to travel as well and I do the same thing where I take my family and go to the beach and love it. I also meditate, probably not as much as I should lol.
    Thanks a bunch

  • Gregory says:

    I was in another city for a few days attending something for entrepreneurs. It was enjoyable as they mostly are, except that I had to unwind when I came back. The drive was beautiful and somewhat relaxing, still I had to pull things together when I got home. I don’t think that would happen on a really good walk or, say, cross country skiing.

  • Ken Jones says:

    Thanks for the timely reminder.

  • Natalia Porto says:

    Hi Jeff! I have been watching your videos for a while but it is my first time posting.
    I also struggle with my self care and always have to make a point and a time for it. My favorite things are to go for a walk, go dancing, wander in nature, and getting a massage. Family time is also precious to me.
    Thanks for all the great insights and information on your videos.

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