Owning a small business is hard. Anyone who tells you otherwise is not telling you the truth. When attempting to take on a variety of roles yourself, from marketing to manufacturing, you put yourself on a path for burnout. So, when the inevitable feeling of being in over your head occurs, you need strategies for coping.

In this post, we take a look at four effective strategies for managing the challenges of running a small business. Follow these strategies to de-stress and put yourself in a position for an easier future.

Take a minute to breathe

First, take a minute to breathe. Go ahead, I’ll wait.

Now that you’ve taken some time to reset your mental state with the power of conscious breathing, you are more prepared to take on the day. Deep breathing is one of the best ways that you can de-stress from the day-to-day chaos that comes with small-business ownership.

Focus on your breathing, counting off for 5 to 8 seconds as you fill your belly and your chest. Then breathe out for the same amount of time. You can repeat this technique as many times as you like to help you reset and start again with more focus and control.

Rank your biggest challenges

Next, it’s time to face your challenges in the most productive, doable way possible. This can be a simple as making a list.

Visualize the challenges you face. Then, rank your causes for anxiety. In small business management, these might include gaining a sizable enough audience to turn a livable profit or perhaps dealing with your vendors or production load.

Every small business owner will face their own unique and pressing challenges depending on their business model. Organize your thoughts with the help of online sticky notes and other planning tools that allow you to freely visualize your business process. This will help you pinpoint exactly where your greatest challenges are so that you can itemize your anxieties for a systematic approach.

Then, you can focus on your biggest concerns one at a time to make managing them less overwhelming.

Find one task you can accomplish today

If you’ve completed the previous two strategies, then you’ve already accomplished plenty on your path to a manageable business process. Often, we set our goals too high and just end up disappointing ourselves. Many of us tend to think in branching steps that take us far into the future, which can be an incredibly overwhelming way to plan a business.

Instead, focus on the moment. You may feel overwhelmed at all that you have to do to keep your business running smoothly and efficiently, especially if you’ve encountered some kind of setback. However, by taking the time to write out a to-do list of even a single item that you can accomplish today that takes you towards your overall goals, you can demonstrate to yourself that you are capable of achieving the success you want.

For example, if you know your business model won’t scale easily without the integration of useful information management systems, approach the problem from the angle of what you can accomplish right now. Perhaps this means exploring educational programs that can give you the tools you’ll need in the future.

Implement helpful tools and tech into your process

Finally, look for ways that you can implement technology and software into your work process to automate elements of your business practices. Everyone can use a little help, and all kinds of devices and digital platforms are available on the market.

Maybe you’ll decide to apply an Internet of Things (IoT) device to keep a closer eye on your inventory and even automate your ordering. Or maybe you’ll opt for a workflow management system designed to help you organize your thoughts. Plenty of tools are out there to help you cut down on the time and effort involved in your workload.

From streamlining your approach to social media marketing to helping you write better copy, software and tech are here to assist you. Find the best tools for you.

By applying these strategies to your small business management style, you can better approach each day mindfully, taking on your day one task at a time. As a result, you’ll find yourself feeling much less overwhelmed as you navigate your business towards a lucrative future.

Noah Rue is a journalist and content writer, fascinated with the intersection between global health, personal wellness, and modern technology. When he isn’t searching out his next great writing opportunity, Noah likes to shut off his devices and head to the mountains to disconnect.

Breathe stock photo by fizkes/Shutterstock