Employees are not the only people who get “summeritis.” With the gorgeous weather and fun summer activities calling your name, it might be hard for you to continue your busy entrepreneurial schedule without losing your mind.
You may feel as if you can’t possibly step away from your precious baby (that is, your business) for even one day because no one can run it like you can or because you’ll miss a big opportunity if you’re not there. That's understandable – it’s hard to let go.
Last year, a study from OnDeck showed only 57 percent of small-business owners were planning on taking any kind of vacation, and 67 percent of those taking vacations planned on working during their trips.
Ready to buck the trend? Here are three reasons taking a break can do both you and your business some good:
- It gives you time to think about the future of your business. Do you ever plan to sell your business? Do you see yourself retiring at some point? Of course you do. That means your business needs to become self-sufficient enough to run without you, and the only way that’s going to happen is if you start trusting others to keep it going while you’re away on short breaks.
- Most “ah ha” moments come when you’re not thinking about work. According to Psychology Today, the brain’s frontal lobe, which is responsible for reasoning, planning, decision making, and judgment, works in creative ways when the brain is quiet – not when you are trying to find a solution to a problem. Moments of insight increase as the brain unwinds. When not actively tackling a task, the brain connects random ideas and consolidates these with prior knowledge into exciting new thoughts, directions, and potential solutions. That has to be good for business, right?
- Vacations are vital for stress relief. The chronic stress we feel as entrepreneurs eventually damages the area of the brain responsible for learning and memory. Therefore, reducing stress is key to maximizing your brain's performance. Also, your brain needs a break from your devices. Multitasking forces our brains to switch back and forth quickly between tasks, which fatigues the brain and slows its efficiency and performance.
To give yourself a break this summer, try these tips:
- Pick a good time to leave. If your business is super busy on weekends, for instance, take a few days off in the middle of the week.
- Tell your staff and clients. Make sure everyone on your staff and key customers know your plans ahead of time, and leave a trusted person in charge.
- Start small. Test run your vacation abilities with a three-day weekend if you don’t feel you can take a whole week off. Even a few days unplugged can do wonders for you and your business.
Rieva Lesonsky is CEO of GrowBiz Media, a media and custom content company focusing on small business and entrepreneurship. Email Rieva at [email protected], follow her on Google+ and Twitter.com/Rieva, and visit her website, SmallBizDaily.com, to get the scoop on business trends and sign up for Rieva's free TrendCast reports.