Summertime, and the living is easy…

It’s a familiar line isn’t it? And for many people its very true. Summer is traditionally the time when we take our annual holiday, spend time with family, kick back and relax. The longer daylight hours mean many people take the opportunity to use the evenings for leisure time and this summer in the UK the weather seems to have given rise to a whole new level of barbeque cooking!!

But for the business owner/entrepreneur it can be a stressful time. Team members want to take their holiday, and this can leave us short staffed and therefore needing to work longer hours. Pressure from our own families to spend time with them increases – especially for parents of school age children who have the added issue of childcare to content you. And of course, most of us will have the internal voice telling us to take a break, enjoy the sunshine, chill- after all that’s part of the attraction of being your own boss – right?

As a coach I often hear this story playing out for my clients and my advice is always “find your balance”.

I use the longer daylight hours to get things done so that I can get some time off with family later in the day. I find that I wake up earlier in the summer months and can get all sorts of jobs done before most people begin their day. This frees up evenings so I can enjoy family and friends without feeling guilty

Try and plan staff holidays well in advance. Often teams will step up to cover colleagues’ absences or if you know this won’t be possible, think ahead and get some other cover- temporary staff, students who are looking for summer work experience, family members who will help you out.

Share childcare with others in a similar position- knowing that you have your kids watched for 2 days and that you need to return the favour for 2 days could give you the freedom you need to get the essential stuff done on the days you are working.

Book your own vacation. Yes, you need a break too! Rest and recuperation are essential if you want to continue to fire on all cylinders. Too many entrepreneurs work relentlessly then suddenly hit a wall. Far better to plan to take time out and take it.

Find a safe pair of hands to look after things while you are away – this might be a trusted member of our team or a virtual assistant who will professionally handle the day to day enquiries pending your return. Then go and relax. Switch off, kick back let your energy return. This will give you chance to reconnect with why you got you’re your own business in the first place, it will strengthen family relationships and allow you get balance back into your life. You may also find that your next “Big Idea” pops into your head whilst you are at.

And now its time for me to take my own advice and take a couple of weeks out to holiday with family; rest, read, eat great food, drink great French wine, soak up some rays and come back in September with renewed vigour for the rest of the year.

Have a great summer everyone and let me know how what your plans are.

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