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How to take a holiday when you're self-employed


Taking a holiday can fill business owners with dread.


I know, I've been there.


It's not simply a case of popping in a holiday request form and then counting down the days to your well-earned break. It can be a major source of stress and puts many business owners off taking some time out. I have found myself taking my laptop on 'breaks' and logging on more often than I should 'just to check on things'. However I found this simply added to my stress, instead of relieving it.


Taking time off is so important to clearing the mind, spending much needed time with family, and reminding ourselves why we work so hard. But relinquishing control, especially when you have put in so much hard work into building, growing and maintaining your business, can be difficult. Even more so if you have no staff to lean on in these times.


Here are my top tips on how to have a real holiday, so you can return feeling rejuvenated and ready to move your business forward.


PLAN


Where possible plan your holidays for the quieter times for your business. Taking time out during a major project, or when you have the most customers is simply going to add to your stress levels, so if you can avoid this, do. If your business is busy year round then start planning the tasks that can be taken on by your team members, or indeed - outsourced. Ensure that you leave sufficient time in the two weeks leading up to your holiday to get all the essential tasks done and a handover complete. There are some great Project Management Tools you can utilise to help you and your team keep on top of your workload. The free version of Trello is one of my favourites.


COMMUNICATE


Let your team members know when you intend to be off work and if/when they might be able to contact you and how. If you simply cannot be incommunicado for the entirety of your break then schedule in one or two Zoom calls with your team to allow you to check in and ask your team members to be prepared with any updates or questions they might have. This will ensure you are kept in the loop and will allow you to deal with everything swiftly.


Plan all your social media posts for the duration of your break in advance and use a scheduling tool like Buffer to ensure posts go out to the right audiences at the right times.


Schedule catch up meetings for the week of your return so you can get back into the swing of things quickly.


SEEK HELP


If you'd like to chat about how The Flexible PA can assist you whilst you're on holiday do get in touch. We can manage your inbox and calendar, schedule your social media posts, deal with customer enquiries and much more. You don't need to enter into a long-term contract, we help lots of businesses on an ad hoc basis. We're flexible like that!


Now...relax, switch off and enjoy some 'you' time. You deserve it!





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