Smooth Sailing: Take a break and enjoy your business growth

One of the great things about business owners is their drive and willingness to work hard, and do what it takes to be successful. But all that drive and hard work can come at a price when it leaves you feeling burnt out and exhausted.

Sometimes you just need to take a (gasp!) break.

Yes, I know. Even thinking about a break makes you feel guilty, or downright terrified that your business can’t run without you, and that all of your customers will leave, and there’s no chance any other customer would ever want to work with you because you took a vacation. All the money is going to up and disappear, and

Relax. Literally.

Everyone deserves a little time away, and in fact, contrary to what you may be thinking, taking a break could actually be good for your business. Oftentimes we get so caught up in the day to day of running a business that we sometimes lose sight of the big picture, and why we are doing this in the first place.

Having a chance to rest and rejuvenate will help you get some clarity, and you’ll come back to work feeling refreshed and excited to get back to work.

The key is to plan ahead and take the necessary steps to make sure your business is smooth sailing while you’re gone.

Obviously how to do this will vary depending on the type of business you run, but with all of the technology we have at our disposal, in addition to automation options and having good systems in place, you’d be surprised at how much can still get done while you’re away sipping rum punches in the Caribbean for a week.

Here are 3 things that could make taking time off feel less guilty, and instead keep you cruising along.

1. Prioritize Your To-Do List

As you are leading up to your nice vacation, you’ll need to take the extra steps to eliminate as many tasks as you can prior to leaving so you can take care of the remaining ones with steps 2 and 3.

To do this, make a list of everything you normally do on a daily basis. Leave no stone unturned. Next, decide which of these tasks can be done ahead of time, or rescheduled. Ideally, you’ll try to get them done beforehand, because you’ll probably be busy playing some sort of catch-up when you return from your blissful holiday, so do as much as you can on the frontend to eliminate overwhelm on the backend.

Lastly, make a list of anything that doesn’t fall within the “normal daily operations” scope and repeat the process above… can you take care of anything beforehand?

Is there anything you can automate? Which leads me to step 2.

2. Automate Automate Automate

In case it’s not clear enough from the heading, if you can find a way to automate some of your tasks, you should do that. You don’t want to be on vacation feeling like you have to schedule your social media posts, or send that email on that certain day.

You can automate just about anything online. For instance, you can use Buffer or Meet Edgar to schedule your social media posts ahead of time so they automatically post at certain times throughout the week while you’re gone. People will think you’re posting them yourself, but no… the only thing your hands are doing is twirling the little umbrella in your rum punch.

You can also look into apps and software such as Zapier or IFTTT (If This Then That). Both of these have a seemingly unlimited number of things you can automate.

3. Hire a Virtual Assistant

If you have a team of employees, it makes taking off much easier because you can simply delegate your critical tasks to an employee.

If you don’t have any employees, and you have things that can’t be automated or that can’t wait until you return, consider hiring a Virtual Assistant (or VA as they’re better known as). Think of a VA as your very own personal assistant. We’re not just talking about run-of-the-mill VAs, either. There are VAs out there for just about every job imaginable.

Need someone to manage your inbox while you’re out? There’s a VA for that.

Need someone to follow up with clients, get new leads, update your website, write a proposal, or even spy on your competitors? You guessed it… there’s a VA for that.

Professional VAs are highly skilled, and can make your life easier, even when you’re not on vacation, so it’s worth exploring either way.

Kick Back and Enjoy Yourself

Once you’ve taken the steps to help your business continue to run and thrive while you’re out, you can actually sit back and relax. It may feel unnatural at first, but it’s so important to give your mind and body a break from time to time. After all, you deserve it.

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