We all know that every now and again we all need a break. But when you’re running your own business it’s hard to feel like you can take a step back without your world having crumbled in on you when you get back. Going on holiday and spending time with family and friends never used to be such a daunting task, so here are my top tips for getting back those guilt-free days off:
When you’re a business owner, especially if you work on your own, the thought of leaving your emails and social media accounts untouched for a few days is not a thought many of us enjoy. Who wants to come back from a lovely weekend away to find hundreds of emails in their inbox? Not me. But thankfully, there are loads of new apps you can use that will keep you going when you need to take your foot off the pedal.
Tools such as Smarter Queue (a new personal favourite), Hootsuite or Skedsocial allow you to schedule content to be posted at whatever time or day you choose to all social media sites. More simply, you can set up an out-of-office email responder or automated email reminders to clients with outstanding invoices. This means you can keep reaching your target audience, promoting your business, and doing what needs to be done even while you’re soaking up the sun and lounging by the beach!
If you’re a client, friend or have even briefly crossed paths with me you will know how I feel about outsourcing. Do what you do best, and outsource the rest! This doesn’t just apply for when you’re taking a much deserved holiday, but it’s of particular importance for this topic.
Automation is a handy tool for your daily tasks, but when an expert eye or opinion is needed unfortunately there aren’t many apps that can do the job. (Perhaps this isn’t unfortunate because otherwise not many of us would have jobs… but still). For this you can find freelancers or even friends that will be happy to take on a chunk of your work while you’re away. This way, you can rest easy knowing your clients aren’t going to switch to a competitor and that you won’t have a mountain of work waiting for you when you return to work.
If you give yourself a starting point for when you get back. By highlighting which tasks need to get done and in what order, you’ll find the thought of coming back to work is less scary. Just like I advise you to plan for the next morning each evening, you should do the same for when you’re taking a break (just on a little larger scale). You’ll find that you have more clarity about where to start, you’ll be more prepared for each task and it should help highlight if any issues are likely to occur while you’re away.
Inspiration often strikes when we give our brains nothing much to think about, and it really is important to give yourself the occasional break from the business side of things. But this doesn’t mean you have to go completely “cold turkey”. It is scary to step back from your business, particularly when you’ve worked so hard to get to where you are. So if you don’t think you can go without then that is fine. If you need to take your laptop or work phone with you, do it. Just try to give yourself time-slots for work, maybe an hour in the morning or just after lunch. This way you can retain control, but still make the most of your time away.
I would love to hear about where you’ve been and if these tips helped you to avoid the guilt!
Remember to get your ASK in gear, it will ease the stress and make the whole planning process and holiday run up so much easier. Your people will raise to the challenge and those who don’t weren’t your people. Double bonus you get the support you need whilst flushing out the flaky people!
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