Indulge me in the opportunity to stray from my usual commentary on marketing. My other passion is talking about entrepreneurship (I even wrote a book about it). As most of my readers are entrepreneurs, I would like to pose a question to you:
Why is it so hard for us to take a vacation?
As loyal readers noticed, I was away last week on a well-deserved vacation. Everyone asks where I went. Nowhere, actually. My mother came to visit, and rather than trying to pretend I was fully functional as a business (answering phone calls and emails) I decided, gulp, to turn off my email and cover my phone so the blinking message light wouldn’t drive me crazy. I work from home, so completely leaving the office is never possible.
Why didn’t I do this before? I don’t know, I guess I worried a client would have a marketing emergency or would feel I wasn’t giving enough of my services. But you know what? No one complained. Everyone wished me a happy vacation. Nothing burned up or fell apart.
I had 258 emails waiting for me. About 10 were important. I overinflated my value to the point of not ever wanting to be completely off of work, and taking a week off showed me it’s been unnecessary.
Entrepreneurs are essentially businesses. And businesses close. So why do so few of us take vacations? I think we feel so emotionally connected to our businesses, it’s a bit like leaving a baby alone for a week. What if it starves? What if it breaks everything? We’d never forgive ourselves.
I learned that it’s a good idea to treat your business as such: a business. It has hours and it’s not necessary that you be there 24/7. It’s actually refreshing to not check email every 20 minutes, and a good vacation can make you a better entrepreneur.
Now that that’s off my plate, talk to me. Do you find it hard to get away?