Taking a month off is good for you, it’s good for your physical and mental health and it is good for business.
When you take time off your head clears, you are able to see new possibilities and opportunities, you have more energy to work on your business and you have balance.
Most (closer to all) small business owner tell me they can’t take time off. That makes me sad. Entrepreneurs start companies to gain personal and financial freedom and end up trapped as their hardest working, lowest paid employee.
My dream for every entrepreneur is to see them have control over their time and money enough so that if they want they can take an entire month off.
So how do you take a month off?
First thing is to make the decision that this year is the year I’m taking a month off. Making the decision is half the battle. Believe that you can and then work towards making it happen.
Every year I take the month of August off. My clients know this, my team knows it and my business is set up so that I can both afford to do it and I have everything in place to ensure I have a company when I come home.
Right now I have a coaching practice, however, the same applied way back when I routinely took a month off from working in the travel agency I owned. Many of my clients take a month or more off in the summer and several weeks off over the winter holidays. You just need to have a plan.
What is your plan?
Right now look ahead. What month would you like to take off?
Now, go into your calendar and mark yourself away.
Now much money will your company need this year to support you taking a year off? Where will that money come from? A new client, a new product, higher sales, lowering expenses. Without a money plan taking the time off will not feel like time off. Be sure to give yourself enough time to make the financial plan work.
Look at your income statement now to determine a financial plan for your break. Come up with an exact number to budget for to be able to get away. Putting money away in a business savings account every month is a good start.
Ok, so I have the time off and I have the money but I have no one to run my company?
Now you have in front of you the best and most rewarding challenge. Your job starting today is to carve time away from being your busiest employee. It’s time to build a competent team so that you have a business and not just a self created job. This is possible, even if you are a solopreneur. In today’s world of contract employees, outsourcing and ever improving technology there is a way for every small business owner to take a break.
This process is about working strategically to create what YOU want from owning this business. To stop letting the work, the money, the stress dictate your life.
If you have too many customers (aka I’m busy) you may need to hire more staff, raise your prices or set a limit to how much you are willing to do.
If you don’t have enough customers then you need to set some realistic targets for new customers and spend time creating and executing a plan to get more. When you have your month off goal in front of you, everything is possible.
Because now you are truly working for yourself.