Spring Break is coming up in just a week or so, are you taking time off? What? You didn’t because you’re too busy with your business to take a vacation? Unfortunately, this is a common story with entrepreneurs and many business leaders.Taking a vacation is essential to maximizing your entrepreneurial talents plus it’s good for your overall well-being. Our team needs us to be awesome and if we are burnt out, it is really hard to be awesome. Rest and recovery are the obvious benefits but there are many other good reasons to get away that might not be so obvious.

Here are 5 unexpected reasons to schedule time-off and how it’ll positively impact you and your business.

#1 Focused Productivity

Ever notice that the week before you leave is incredibly productive? This happens because we have a clearly defined deadline; we ignore things that aren’t important, we delegate more aggressively, and we daydream less. Bonus: Pay attention to how you work in this week leading up to the vacation; there is some gold in learning how you truly work best.

#2 Spark Creativity & Innovation

How many times have you heard of an epiphany gained while on vacation? It happens. So often we get caught in the weeds of the day-to-day activities, that we find it hard to think bigger picture. On vacation, let’s disconnect and discard all of the irrelevant, minor troubles that are bothering us back home. Chill out and give your poor brain a rest! When I create space for my mind to wander, the ideas just seem to come but it starts by creating that space.

#3 Celebrate Success – You’ve earned it

Do you stink at celebrating? I know I do. I hit a goal and I just move on to the next one; I often don’t take the time to enjoy the victory. When we give ourselves some recognition, we gain insight into what we are truly great at and energy to keep driving forward. Why not schedule a special activity on the vacation that is the reward for a big personal goal? Swim with dolphins, enjoy a special meal, get a massage on the beach, you get the idea. Point being, reflect on your big wins and celebrate while on vacation.

#4 Find the Holes in Your Business

Discovering holes is not a bad thing. If you disconnect completely while away, you might find gaps in your business. Things may get missed or problems may arise because you’re not there. When you’re there, you don’t notice the gaps because you naturally address them as they come up. So, during your next time off, test the systems of your business. If you have holes to address when you come back, excellent! Now you have an opportunity to improve your business.  

#5 Spot Your Stars

Vacations are a great opportunity to learn about your people and see who steps up and really shines. You can see those who are eager to grab the wheel and drive while you’re gone. You will find out which people can think for themselves and make good decisions when faced with adversity. You’ll really learn who are your stars or potential stars in your business if you’re watching closely.

Here are a few quick tips to help you actually take your vacation:

  • Track your vacation days per year. Set a target and go get it, just like any other goal in your business.
  • Have an accountability partner to keep you on track.
  • Having trouble letting go? Check out my blog, How to Let Go and Still Sleep at Night

And WHEN you go on vacation, follow these rules to maximize the benefit for your business while you’re away:

  • Disconnect from phones, email, internet and your business.
  • Only 1 to 2 key people know how to reach you – and only when it’s an emergency.
  • Give yourself permission to have fun and NOT purposefully think about your business.
  • Bring along a notebook to capture your ideas, quickly note down any ideas, then get back to relaxing.

So plan your SUMMER vacation NOW, bonus points for scheduling next winter too.

By having your vacation in your schedule well in advance you will have everything and everyone in place so that you can truly go away and rest, recover and rejuvenate. When you get back you’ll be thrilled with your refreshed outlook, you’ll learn your team’s strengths and weaknesses, discover if you need to change your business system, and you may even come back with a few innovative ways to improve your business.

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