Take a break
Running and managing a business is hard whether you are a one man band making all the decisions yourself or a manager in a corporation. It is demanding on time and personal resources and it can be very hard to switch off but is important to find the time to switch off and take a break.
In an age of increasing concern for mental health wellbeing and an increasing awareness of the negative consequences of some types of stress it is clear that living your business 24/7/365 is not healthy. You need time to forget the business at least for a short time.
When I started working in the mid 90’s I’d switch my computer off and go home, occasionally sitting in the pub after work on a Friday night remembering something I’d forgot to do and writing it on a beer mat which got pulled out on Monday morning as a reminder. Work was stressful but it had finite boundaries in time and physical location.
Today I write this in my home office, I could be writing it anywhere on my phone, tablet or MacBook, which are completely portable and yes I have been guilty of sitting on an exercise bike writing work related emails. The boundaries have been completely removed by technology and working practices. This doesn’t help mental health and wellbeing.
It’s natural to want to respond to an issue, I’m in my own business and as a one man band if I don’t sort it out then nobody else will. What I can do though is choose how I respond and prioritise those responses.
Be in the Room
I once attended a seminar/workshop by Nigel Risner and one of the things that stuck with me was the phrase ‘When you are in the room, be in the room 100%’. So when in the office be 100% focused on work, when in the park on the swings with your children be 100% with them, when having a romantic meal with your partner give them your 100% attention. Failing to do so will mean the different parts of your life will become out of of balance. The further out of balance you are the more stressed and anxious you will be, this takes its toll on mental and physical health over time.
If the business can’t cope without you, then your work is not structured correctly. A successful business with more than 1 employee should be able to cope without you being there. IT IS THAT SIMPLE. As important as you would like to think yourself, you should be replaceable. I accept that in a one person company it is harder but there are still ways to cope and choices that can be made to free you up.
That is exactly what I will be doing from the 13th to 17th June, I will be taking my break and recharging my batteries after a stressful six months. My pleasure this time is not to sit by the pool in a hot location but to go and sit in a field with loud music, the odd coffee from The Motley Brew, a few beers and a lot of like minded people who just want to have a good time and enjoy live music. Download Festival here I come!
Feel free to ring me but with the loud music I probably won’t hear you, just leave a message. I will set aside sometime to respond to emails and messages as the business won’t completely stop, I appreciate that but it won’t be the first priority for a few days.
On Tuesday 18th I will return, recharged and refocused 100% on the business and hopefully not too wet from the English rain.
If your business does not run without you being present and you would like help to change this, call me on 07943 291250 (whilst I’m at Download leave a message and I’ll come back to you). We can find ways to free you up!
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