“You find that you have peace of mind and can enjoy yourself…
when you know that it was a one hundred percent effort that you gave – win or lose.”
– Gordie Howe, Four-Time Stanley Cup Champion
Summer is almost here and everyone’s thoughts turn to the possibility of taking a vacation. The kids are out of school, the weather is nice, and the beach is calling. Many business owners and managers, however, feel guilty about taking time for themselves, especially in an uncertain economy.This year, we started a new business, and took on a host of new responsibilities and challenges. Coincidentally, I have had more opportunities for vacation travel than ever before. Special events and family gatherings just seemed to all fall together, and I didn’t want to miss any of it. But how do you justify stepping away from a business that is operating at such a crucial juncture?
Get in tune with your calendar. I looked months in advance, and planned for how much time I would need to accomplish tasks. I estimated how much time I would need for each project, and made sure I had them done before I left town. I analyzed which ones could be put off until after I got back. I left nothing to guesswork.
Prepare your boss for your absence. I left detailed comments and notes on what would be happening while I was gone, along with any actions I needed him to take to keep things moving forward.
Be accessible for important deadlines. My boss has been very flexible with my vacation schedule. In return, I am making myself available to handle some important projects while I am on the road. The trick here is to really prioritize what is important. We have a few monthly deadlines cast in stone. I plan on handling only those projects by taking a few hours of my vacation near a computer.
Let go of guilt! Vacations are a time for you to relax and get inspired. Your family time should be as big a priority as your business time. The two must compliment each other or why are you in business in the first place? If I plan carefully for my absence, I can better enjoy my time away, and return to work a more productive and creative employee, ready to get back on the playing field.
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