Are you too busy to take a break? Would you like a few days off? This can be a difficult decision when you run a small business. After all, there is always something to be done. Are you be able to completely switch off and stop working? Do you still feel the need to check voicemail, emails and post messages on social media?
I reflect on my decision to take a few days off over Easter and I am glad for the break. It has been great to recharge and spend time with my family. Here are a few tips to help ensure you can make the most of some time off from work.
As time management is the key to getting work done, consider taking your much-needed time off when it will impact as little as possible on both you and your clients. This usually requires thoughtful planning in advance so you can block out the time and finish off tasks prior to your break. Advise clients of your absence, if necessary. Also consider what you have in your calendar the week or two after your break and what a break will mean to your work load when you return. A week away just before a client launches a new website is likely to be problematic and stressful for both you and your client if you haven’t finished this job well ahead of schedule.
Could you divert your calls or emails? Do you need to set up auto responses to email accounts? How could others help while you are away? Can you outsource some components of your work to free up some time? If you have employees and are concerned about leaving them while you are away, you possibly have greater problems than needing a vacation.
Are your working hours set for the week or do you just fill in every spare minute with work? Do you normally respond to emails and phone calls after hours. Carefully delegating time on and off helps to ensure you are working productively as well as looking after yourself.I know how easy it is to skip lunch when work gets demanding. Prioritise and plan your blocks of time to create a work life balance and prevent burnout.
Time away from work can be anything from something as short as a quick fifteen minute walk to something as long as a month to a faraway destination. Scheduling breaks ahead of time so you can stay productive and not disrupt your overall progress can provide a great opportunity to stumble across inspirational material and reenergise your creativity. This time can also provide a chance to dream up a brilliant new idea or consider a fresh perspective on a current project.
You’re only here for a short visit. Don’t hurry, don’t worry. And be sure to smell the flowers along the way – Walter Hagen
As work gets stressful, build in breaks and enjoy a refreshing pause.