For those that love what they do, it is tough to unplug & unwind. There are always so many things we want to get to. So many things we want to create. When you love what you do, especially as an entrepreneur, it can be hard to step aside and close your business out of your mind.
I am no exception: I find it hard to take just 2-3 days off. Why? Because it takes me 2-3 days just to stop looking for my phone, laptop, or smartwatch and re-teach myself how to relax. If I can get through those days, then the chances are that days 4-14 are great. If so, then I can tune out the outside world and relax.
But it is very hard to do that – hard to take time off, hard to separate from my technology/network connections, and hard to not be thinking about my business – from the strategy on down to operations.
The key to being able to take a solid vacation and go “unplug” from the rest of the world really is to focus on building the right systems and putting them in place with your team in the weeks and months prior to the vacation. Here are a few examples of systems that I find to be vital, and without which I could never go off-grid (i.e., without electronics) and totally unplug:
- Systems for client coverage: it is critical for someone on your team to support your clients.
- Systems for email review/delegation: again, it’s critical to have a trusted team member review, triage, and deal with any important emails while you are unplugged.
- Sales Systems: sales cannot stop simply because you are out of the office. You must have someone on your team ready and empowered to manage the sales process in your business while you are gone – and who can close sales so that revenue continues to build.
- Marketing Systems: must be in place to continue to fill your sales pipeline and develop your brand equity. Before unplugging, not only should these systems be established, but you also should delegate your key marketing projects to team members so that while you are gone, you know that marketing is continuing.
- Financial Control Systems: perhaps the most obvious. Cash needs to be collected, and bills, salaries, and expenses paid without any interruption due to your vacation. These systems make sure money flows in and that everything is properly accounted for.
With these systems in place, you get peace of mind – and thus, you can truly relax and recharge while on vacation. Furthermore, since your team will have handled all day-to-day activities that happened while you were gone, you will not return to an impossible set of tasks that have piled up in your absence. Instead, you can return refreshed, recharged, and relaxed – ready for the next set of growth opportunities for your business and team. That’s energy spent moving the business forward instead of energy being dissipated fixing what didn’t happen while you were gone.
When you have good policies, procedures, examples, templates, scripts, etc. in place and understood by your team, I have found it is much easier to delegate tasks and give your team the confidence to operate successfully without you being closely involved. This is an important part of growing a strong team – one you can rely on for your business.
It also is key to allowing you to rest assured that the team knows how to handle things as they occur, so you can go “off-grid” and unplug without any technology for a bit, and invest some time in your own wellbeing – which ultimately pays off in terms of the increase in positive energy you return with and apply to your business!
Kristen David, a former trial lawyer and partner who went from working 85 hours a week and taking home way too little money in her law firm, built it up to a million-dollar-plus business, then sold her shares and pivoted into a business coach guru. She is now an international speaker, bestselling author, and operates a successful business, empowering business owners to build thriving, profitable businesses that are self-managed with systems. She helps busy business owners build those systems by implementing policies and procedures the Fast Track Way.