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Relax - It's the Holidays!

For many small business owners, the #holiday season is THE season. Consumer spending is up and people at large are more prone to splurge during the holidays. For certain industries, the time between the end of October and the New Year is the time to make hay. But hay making is tiring, and when you're money motivated, chances are come January 2nd, you’ll be exhausted.

While it’s important to be on your Ps and Qs and working when the work is available, you can find yourself inching closer and closer to burnout - one of your greatest enemies. Unless you’re a robot, you’ll need time to rest, sleep, and you’ll need downtime.

But how do you find downtime during the busiest time of year?

Make a downtime appointment - and keep it.

Busy season or not, being an #entrepreneur often translates to “being busy all the time and not working normal hours”. But, just like you keep your appointments for meetings, deliveries, and the other things it takes to run your business, make it a point to schedule time to relax.

As silly as it sounds, write it down in your calendar or in your planner and DO NOT BREAK that promise you made to yourself. It’s hard to justify taking unplanned time off, but planning enables you to plan around it so that it doesn’t affect your business negatively. Being able to approach your daily activities fresh and engaged will always make you more #successful.

Don’t forget about your hobbies.

If you’re a small business owner, you’ve probably spent countless hours working at your #business, and even more time thinking about it. While making your business a part of you and you a part of your business can lead to success, you’ve probably given yourself less time to enjoy outside hobbies.

Change that now! Some of the most powerful people in the world have notable hobbies and make it a point to spend time engaging with them.

If you play an instrument or like to paint or read or garden or jump rope - whatever your hobby is - make time to enjoy it! It’ll force you to take some time off and focus your mind and energy on something different, leading to you feeling fresher and more engaged when you go back to your #business.

This tip works especially for the busybody who would much rather spend downtime doing another activity than spending downtime lounging.

Plan a vacation.

To most #entrepreneurs, the idea of taking even a day off is a bridge too far. But now could be the time to fantasize - and make that fantasy a reality. Research from 2010 in Applied Research in Quality of Life, a prominent research journal, suggests that just planning a trip has been proven to make you feel happier.

As a matter of fact, the study goes on to suggest that most people experience the benefits of going away during the “planning” phase, not during the actual trip or after the trip. So, planning to give yourself a vacation next year can have positive effects on your outlook and emotions right now.

The real win is if you plan some time to yourself to plan a trip and traveling is your hobby. Your levels of relaxation and happiness will be off the charts!

It can be hard to see the forest for the trees when you’re at the forefront of making your small business work. But don’t forget that downtime, time with family and friends, and relaxation are necessary for your #productivity – as much as eating or sleeping. Especially when times are busy, make an effort to give yourself time off.

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