Small Business Owner Advice: Take a Break
Posted on 25 July 2021
Well, I have come to a decision and it should not be that controversial, but every small business owner will understand why it was so tough to make. I’m going to take some time off. Yes, I’m taking three weeks away from Afrotouch Design to relax, recharge my batteries and prepare for the last four months of the year. This is one of my most important pieces of small business owner advice: take a break.
So many of us feel that we can’t step away from the business for any length of time - only 57% of small business owners do - but the fact is that you can. Sure, it isn’t easy and you have to prepare for the time you will be away, but for your body and mind - not to mention your family - you really should take some time out.
Why Small Business Owners Hate Taking Time Off
There are a few different reasons you might hate taking time away from your small business:
- You think it will fall apart without you
Yes, you are probably used to being hands on, but if you have other staff around you, now is the time to trust them. Presumably, you are not going into space on your break. You’ll probably still be on the end of a phoneline. If they need you, they will call. If you have selected the right people and given them the correct training and a bit of responsibility, they probably won’t need to.
- I’ll lose out on money
This one is a particular concern of sole traders. People who ARE the business and, if they don’t work, the business doesn’t. There is no income. Once again, this requires planning. The long term solution (ahead of next year’s holidays) is to aim to save a little each month to cover your lack of income whilst you are away. The shorter term solution could be to outsource some of your tasks to someone who can keep things ticking over whilst you are gone. You might need to work long hours to produce enough products to sell whilst away, if that is your business, but the benefits of a break will outweigh this effort.
- Will the customers still be there when I return?
Customers are human, they will understand. Let them know in advance that you are going away and work around that schedule to make sure you catch up before you go and on your return. If you check your diary, you will probably notice a summer lull in client activity anyway, as they take time off during school holidays, for example. Take these weeks where there are fewer meetings and deliverables to plan your break.
Why Small Business Owners Should Take Time Off
There are so many reasons why you should, no matter how difficult it seems, take time off. Firstly, you cannot possibly work at full pelt forever. No one is super human like that. We all need time away to rest and for self care.
When you look after yourself, you recharge your batteries, ready to go again. That change of scenery and routine is good for the soul, the body and the brain and can even help you gain some perspective on the issues that have troubled you. Yes, you should be enjoying delving into a trashy paperback on the beach, but you can still take a little time to think about work and not being in the middle of the hectic routine can help you find solutions you wouldn’t otherwise have seen.
Another mental boost is being able to spend time with your friends and family. That is key small business owner advice - you can’t just work, you do need to break away and enjoy the presence of your nearest and dearest. These relationships are so important and shutting away work for a while means you get to spend quality time with them.
Ready to Take This Small Business Owner Advice?
You deserve time off. It’s difficult running a small business. Whether you stay at home and laze about for a week or you spend a month on a beach somewhere tropical, a break with those that you love will help you improve at what you do. You help yourself avoid burnout and step outside of the rush so you can cast a critical eye over your business in peace.
There are so many great digital tools to keep your processes running and, if you have staff, give them this opportunity to shine. If they need you, you can make sure you are contactable. Most places have WiFi now!
Let me know what you choose to do and where you go. I’m sure I will fill you in on my break when I return.
And, if you want to get hold of Afrotouch Design items, I won’t be here, but my products are stocked by a host of fantastic retailers who will be all be available whilst I’m away from my desk.