FounderMade's Meghan Asha on Prioritizing Her Mental Health
Mental health shouldn't take a backseat to your job.
How to Balance Your Mental Health and Workload, According to a Top-Level Executive
FounderMade's Meghan Asha has a packed schedule.
As the founder of the consumer discovery platform for the best products in food, wellness, and beauty, Asha juggles meetings and interviews on top of her already heavy workload.
Yet, Asha still finds time to care for her mental health. In fact, it was one of the reasons she started the company.
"It wasn't actually supposed to be a business," she tells Women.com over the phone. "I was working in venture capital after business school and consulting for a couple startups. I was juggling a couple jobs and I was really depressed. I asked myself, 'When you're 90, what will make you happy?' And I said, to get out of my depression, I'm going to start a dinner series and I'm going to call it FounderMade—because my 9-year-old self would be so happy."
Since starting the dinner series a few years ago, it has blossomed into an important facet of the consumer brands world.
"It's one of the most impactful trade shows for consumer brands to launch their products and innovations through beauty and wellness," Asha notes.
Despite FounderMade's growing success and impact, Asha won't push her mental health to the backseat.
"With all these entrepreneurs (like Kate Spade and Anthony Bourdain), it's important to realize, even when you hit a certain level of success, half of it is how you're able to control and maintain your mental state and outlook," she says.
After battling depression and even an eating disorder in college, Asha has figured out what works best for her.
"As an entrepreneur, my life isn't so structured," she states. "I still make sure to work out every day by doing 30/60/90 cross-training and I even run marathons on the weekend. I make time for my family and friends, and just try to maintain balance doing things that I love, like dancing, singing, etc. Also, remembering to be grateful for what I'm able to do helps."
Being out in nature is also something Asha enjoys and encourages others try, as well.
"I love getting out in nature," she says. I just did the Big Sur Marathon this weekend. I was in L.A. for meetings and then I did a crazy marathon out in the woods. It was like being in a new world, surrounded by people you don't know and connecting with your body. It's so nice to do something that isn't associated with work."
Still, carving out time in one's schedule is easier said than done.
When so many people are relying on you, it's tough to shut down your laptop or turn off your phone and enjoy the simpler things in life.
Because of this, Asha has enforced a strict set of reals to hold herself accountable for prioritizing her mental health.
"I'm always on, no matter what time," she mentions. "I've decided that on Friday nights and Saturdays, I won't do any work. Sunday, I'll work and get organized. But Friday nights and Saturday, I let myself have time to decompress."
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"I think everything starts with an idea. No matter how crazy it is, you should always try to bring it to life." - Ann Makosinski This photo was taken at one of @foundermade's first dinners when I was working at two different jobs and hosting dinners because I felt it was my calling to connect entrepreneurs and help them build. I'm still amazed at how far we've come and how much bigger our goals have become. Grateful for the privilege to work on something so rewarding full of love and learning. #followthebreadcrumbs #buildthefuture #justgettingstarted
Your mental health should always come first.
If the founder of a company can make time to do things that benefit her overall health and wellness, so can the rest of us.
It doesn't have to be every day, but doing something that makes you feel happy and complete at least once a week should do the trick. If that happens to be running marathons on the weekend, we're sure Asha wouldn't mind having a buddy.