The more that i thought about this heading for a post, the more i realized how little of my own advice i sometimes seem to take. It has been literally maybe 7 or 8 years since i spent a night further then 100km from home. In actual fact in that time i do not think that i have traveled more then 60km from home. This is not to say that i have not taken time away from work, 2 weeks here and there, but i have spent the time at home, just working on my own things rather then my day to day job.
The importance of taking time completely away is probably one of the most important aspects of working or operating a business. It is probably more important still if you do both. What i mean by holiday is not just putting in a leave application at work, or telling your staff you won’t be in for a few day’s and then sitting at home in front of the TV. It is doing the first step, but then making some good practical use of this time, eg actually booking airline tickets and a hotel room somewhere, or getting in the car and going on sort of a road trip holiday. Really anything that you can just disconnect yourself from your regular duties.
There are many reasons that this is something you should really consider doing. The first but not least is the ability to rejuvenate yourself, to stop and relax, and let your body just catch up. Especially if you have a high stress or heavy workload job this can be a very rewarding break.
Another potential benefit from taking a holiday is expanding your own knowledge, or experiences. Visiting places that you have not been before, seeing sights that you may have previously wished to but not taken the time, can help you to grow your mind and opinions of the world. Taking in different cultures, can mean that you take the time to learn different skills, languages and traditions.
One of the biggest benefits to yourself if you are in your own business though is seeing new ideas, new ways of doing things. The number of business idea’s that start because someone saw something when they were overseas, is quite high, the potential here is wide open for mixing other idea’s with your own, borrowing an idea, or even creating a new idea from a simple inspiration.
The biggest downfall that many business owners claim though is that their business could not operate without them. The question i must ask you if this is your excuse though is. “Did you start your own business to have more or less time for yourself?” If your answer is less time, then sure maybe taking a holiday is not for you, although the last benefit may be something you should really consider in this choice. If your answer was that you would like more time, then you should think are you getting more time for yourself and your family or less, if you cannot leave the business for a holiday then i would consider you are probably getting less time, even though it may seem different.
Take the time to take a holiday. If you work for someone else Annual leave is there for a reason for you to use it. If run your own business, do yourself the biggest favour you can and get the business to the point that you can take that holiday. Be it training staff to do what you do, or hiring additional staff, but whatever it is take the time to make it happen.