I’ve interviewed many entrepreneurs for our blog and found that one of the greatest benefits of business ownership is the flexible schedule it offers. That flexibility, along with the number of online tools available, makes it increasingly easy to do business remotely. However, the ability to work from anywhere can be both a blessing and a curse. Small business owners and remote workers tend to put in 50-60 hours per week and may find it challenging to disconnect from work when they’re on vacation. But rest is an important part of sustainable success and you need to give your body and mind a break.
Summer is the season for vacations and hopefully you’ve got some R&R planned in the weeks ahead. Today I’m offering a few tips to help you unplug from work and enjoy your time off.
Delegating tasks can be a challenge for the entrepreneur-type that’s used to doing everything on their own. (Yes, I’m talking to you.) However, the ability to assign work to others is an important part of managing the day-to-day operations of a business. Start small by handing off simple tasks that don’t require your skills or expertise. When you’re on vacation, set clear expectations about who will be managing certain tasks while you’re away and provide any necessary instructions or training ahead of time.
If you’re planning to go on vacation, make sure to communicate details with your employees and current clients before you leave. Both parties will appreciate your proactive and thoughtful approach and won’t be surprised when they receive your Out of Office message. Planning ahead will also help you to tie up any loose ends so that you don’t have issues looming while you’re away.
When it comes to work and play, as The Offspring says, “you gotta keep ’em separated.” Set up some guidelines for yourself so that you can have fun but don’t feel totally disconnected from work. For instance, pick a time of day, either morning or night, when you will check your email while on vacation. Then set a time limit so that you don’t get wrapped up in work. This will allow you to be aware of any urgent issues and give you the freedom to relax.
Taking a vacation will recharge and re-energize you so that you can continue to do great work. Planning ahead and communicating will ensure that everyone is on the same page while you’re away. And as a result, you will actually enjoy your down time, rather than worrying about work. How do you keep work and play separated? We’d love to hear in the comments below!