OZY and Ally Financial logos over an image of a man in a suit sitting and meditating

From yoga apps to fitness trends, self-care is a must for managing life in 2020. But beyond the buzzword, what does self-care actually mean, and how’s an aspiring entrepreneur to cope? We teamed up with OZY to bring you these inspiring tales from Black leaders about taking care of their minds, bodies, and souls — in addition to the bottom line. Just as OZY breaks the media mold in bringing their readers diverse and surprising perspectives, Ally was built to serve customers digitally since day one — a relentless financial ally for all things money. We hope you’ll take solace and inspiration from these tips.

Self-Care Strategies

Take a look at these five strategies that can help you take care of you.

Work with people who support you.

When building your organization, hiring is about so much more than a sparkling résumé: Team chemistry is crucial. “Find your tribe, but be selective,” says Durecia Moorer, managing partner and chief marketing officer at marketing and events firm ABCD & Company. “This tribe is a tribe you can be vulnerable with and go to in some of your lowest moments.”

Create a healthy structure.

Briahna Gatlin, founder and CEO of PR firm Swank Publishing, starts her days with meditation before checking her email. “Give yourself 30 to 45 minutes of quiet time before going into work mode,” she says. “After I meditate, I prep my day with a checklist and schedule my eating times as well. It’s important to give yourself structure as well as end your day properly without overworking yourself.”

Define your own success.

Comparison is the thief of joy, especially in a crowded and supercharged field like tech. That’s why Nerissa Zhang, who owns two private gyms in San Francisco and is the CEO of The Bright App, a mobile app for fitness professionals, says don’t bother trying to keep up with the Joneses (or Zuckerbergs). “No matter how much success you achieve, you might never ‘look like success’ to some people,” she says.

Know when to take off the cape.

There is pride in being tough, covering every base and showing up at all hours, but you can’t always be Superman. “You are human!” says Moorer of ABCD & Company. “The grind is real and a necessity to meeting your goals. However, the grind does not mean you work harder instead of smarter,” she says. Moorer’s own fix? “I have found that going to bed early and waking up early enhances my productivity. I may not always get to do it, but I feel the difference when I do.”

Sometimes it takes ‘micro-acts.’

The road to ending generational poverty can seem daunting, but if you take concrete steps, from volunteering to donating to participating in community events, you can make progress — and feel empowered. “As an individual, I can choose to do micro-acts in my life,” said Lule Demmissie, during her tenure as president of Ally Invest. “That can make a big difference if everybody else did the same thing.”