by Mary Cantando, Founder of The Woman’s Advantage, Guest Contributor

Stress is one of the greatest enemies of successful women, particularly business owners.

If you can lessen negative stress, you’ll be able to accomplish a lot more in your business and in your life. You can increase the chances of winning the “battle” against stress by considering these five approaches.

Five Ways to Cut Down on Stress

1. Disconnect on a Regular Basis. 

Find a way to disconnect electronically for short blocks of time, like weekends. If you can’t disconnect for whole weeks on vacation, at least give yourself 24-hour blocks of non-connection time.

2. Wake Up at a Consistent Time. 

Though it might feel good every now and then to sleep in, sticking to consistent sleep times helps your body maintain rhythm. Sleeping later than your regular time disrupts your day, makes you less productive, and add to your stress.

3. Eliminate Unimportant Activities and Chores. 

When you fill your free time with unimportant activities and chores, you lose the chance to relax and unwind. If you must do these kind of activities, schedule them on your calendar so they don’t run on endlessly eating up all of your free time.

4. Schedule Time to Work Out. 

Exercise is one of the greatest stress relievers. I’ve found a huge ROI on energy for every minute I spend working out. So, rather than thinking, “I don’t have time to work out because I have to get this done.” I think, “I have to work out to create more energy to get this done.”

5. Schedule Time for Reflection. 

Schedule time to just “think things through.” I find that one of the best times for this is while I’m working out. So that’s another reason for me to exercise.