As a business owner, does the thought of taking vacation make your blood run cold?
You desperately want and need a vacation, but it just seems so impossible. You think “I’m so busy I hardly see straight. I’m supposed to add all the pre-vacation work followed by feeling guilty about being away only to be capped off with the mountain of stuff that piled up while I was gone?!?”
Heck, it’s more trouble than it is worth!
Or is it?
I know so many small business owners who rarely, if ever take vacation. In fact I was talking to my mechanic the other day and he said he has only taken off two days this entire year (for reference, it was already the end of July). Then there is the other camp of entrepreneurs who will squeeze in a vacation or two only to stay connected and work while they are away.
To me, this is not living. Get real!
Is this the freedom and flexibility you were seeking when you decided to own your own business?
I thought not.
Vacation is vital to heart, health, and soul. Your ability to disconnect and recharge is directly related to your ability to be creative, productive, and achieve profitable longevity in your business. Make no mistake about it, playtime away from your regular surroundings is vital for your success. Without it you will burnout.
That isn’t an “if” that is a “when”.
So what gets in the way of taking time off? Here are the top 3 excuses I see self-employed business owners use and how you can break free of them.
My Business Can’t Run Without Me
If your business can’t withstand the impact of you being gone for a few days, this is a sign of a much bigger problem than simply taking vacation. “The world won’t function without me” syndrome is a sign of inflated self-importance. I don’t meant to sound harsh, but the reality is that even if you were gone in a blink of an eye the world would continue to go on without you. Your business would be sold or close, clients and customers would move on, and even your loved ones would carry on without you (albeit mournfully at first).
Excuse Busting Solution
Set up systems, package your services, and build a strong foundation in your business so that you can and do step away from it periodically for both short and longer periods of time. Spend time reflecting on why you find it so hard to delegate, let go of control and the bad habit of micromanagement. Easing your grip of control (an illusion anyway) will enable you and your business to soar.
The Preparation and Catch-Up is Too Overwhelming, So Why Bother
If you find yourself burning the candle at both ends (and the middle) attempting to get ready for and then return from being away, you fall into this trap. Time leading up to being away can feel frantic as you try to tackle everything that’s on your plate and attempt to get ahead to make up for the time you will be away. Then when you return it’s like a mountain of work and issues have piled up that need to be handled. It can feel like too much trouble to bother going away at all if you’re only going to feel like you’ve been punished for doing so.
Excuse Busting Solution
While you might have to invest a few extra hours to manage the gap around your vacation time, it should not be oppressive. It should not crush you and feel like a horrendous vacation hangover. Proper planning, scheduling, and delegating can create all the space you need to disconnect. Time off must be factored into your packages, pricing, and business plan. Otherwise you’ll always be running like a maniac reacting to the unexpected where everything feel like a crisis.
Vacation and Relaxing Bores Me AKA But I’m Passionate About My Work!
Lots of small business owners like you are passionate about what you do. After all, you likely started your business because you have a purpose, a deeper calling to do the work you’re meant to do in the world. That’s great! Yet, it is still just an excuse! As a human you are a multi-faceted being. If you don’t have a hobby, you need one. If you can’t disconnect, it’s a sign there is something you are afraid to face or feel. In today’s times we are so tightly wound that slowing down even a little bit can give you the shakes, like being on caffeine withdrawal. A moment of peace can feel boring. That is OK. In fact it is just what you need to make the muddy waters of day to day life clear again.
Excuse Business Solution
Do something, anything, unrelated to work or “to-do lists”. Participate in an activity or hobby that includes more than just your head. Engage your full self- your body, senses, and spirit. In case you haven’t noticed you do have a body. Start living in it. If it feels unfamiliar or uncomfortable, simply breathe into what you’re feeling and start to notice what is right in front of you. With time you’ll experience more clarity, creativity, and connection with your intuition. Incorporating this into your life will directly impact your business results and learning how to practice these skills within your business will launch those results through the roof.
So, what are you waiting for? Now is the time to put time on your schedule to disconnect and recharge your batteries. No more excuses.
Need help putting these solutions into place in your business? Contact me for a complimentary Intuitive Intelligence® Activation Session and start creating more of the business you really want instead of having it control you.