Small business owners are typically so focused on making their business succeed that they are always hard pressed for time. The notion of time off is laughable to them and mention of a vacation is downright hysterical.
We often tell ourselves that our business can’t run without us. Sentences like “If you want it done right, you have to do it yourself” and “If I wasn’t there, the whole place would fall apart” are excuses we tell ourselves to justify not letting go. I’ve met some business owners that haven’t taken any time for themselves in years! Some as even as much as 6-7 years! I don’t know about you, but that would drive me insane! Ask yourself why you got into business in the first place. I’m guessing you saw a need, wanted to fill it and be your own boss doing it unshackling yourself from the bidding of others. Did you mean to trade one set of shackles for another?
The reality is, we can take a break from our business and it is actually very healthy for us and our business to do just that. Taking a break from our business allows us to re-energize and take new perspectives on ongoing issues. If all you do is work in your little box, then you are missing what’s going on outside the box. Start with a trip to a tradeshow and make a vacation out of it by going early or staying later. Going to tradeshows in my industry and taking the courses they offer has always helped to energize my motivation to make necessary changes to better my business.
Two very important skillsets a small business owner can have are delegation and time management. These two skillsets can help you free yourself from the DIY cycle. If you need help in either of these areas, just look for training classes online. Companies like Fred Pryor Seminars offer full and half-day trainings in specific topics all over the USA. These are two very common training topics and there will most likely be somebody offering training in your area. You can also find a list of 15 responsibilities that you can start delegating today here.
Now the biggest issue with trying to free small business owners from the vicious cycle they’ve created for themselves is to change their mind. If you or somebody you know is stuck in this rut; it often takes a crowbar to pry you/them from it. Delegation/outsourcing and time management take time to implement. This is where people tend to refuse to help themselves. It takes time to save time. I can make all the suggestions in the world to help free up time, but it is up to the individual to actually take the time to do it in order to free themselves of the burden in the future.
Take back your vacation this year and give yourself the break you deserve. You and your business will only be better for it! As I always say, it’s time to “Stop Doing the Mundane, and Start Getting Weird!”