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Productivity & Time Off? It Can Happen

Summer. That wonderful time of the year that is rife with vacations, long walks on the beach and kicking back with a cool lemonade on the deck. Wait?! That’s not what your summer looks like? As an entrepreneur, I can attest to the fact that vacations aren’t quite what they used to be back when I could put in a request for time off and know that I would still have a paycheck in my hand when I came back and when I didn’t have to worry about any client work falling into the summer vacation abyss. That being said, there is nothing more satisfying than being a business owner!

If you’re an entrepreneur or solopreneur, how can you stay productive and happy during the summer? Here are some things I’ve learned to help yourself stay focused and productive while still being able to hang the “gone fishing” sign on occasion:

  • Practice taking time off. Believe me it will take practice. Even if you can’t take an entire week off, find time during the week or on the weekend to simply unplug and step away from your work. If you feel it’s necessary, set up an “away” message on your email with a note that if it’s an emergency to send you a text. Knowing that you can step away from the office and technology for a day at the end of the week will likely make you more productive prior to that – think of carrot on the end of the stick motivation.
  • Take advantage of the schedulers that most social media platforms offer or sign up for HootSuite or other scheduling programs and set up social media updates to post so that you can take a few days off.
  • Spend a bit of up front time to get ahead of your work so that you can take a couple of days off. Write a batch of blog posts and get them scheduled to go live while you’re dipping your toes in the ocean. No one will be the wiser if you plan to have the work done while you’re gone.
  • When you’re working with clients during the summer don’t commit yourself to having any projects with Friday or Monday deadlines. If you avoid deadlines on those days, you just might be able to take an entire weekend off without the stress of a project deadline looming.
  • Work longer hours during the week so that you can take a half day off on Friday or even an entire day off on Friday. Many employers offer flex time where the employees can work four 10-hour days; is there any reason you can’t do that for yourself?

Will any of these work in your business? I’d love to hear how you both remain productive and focused during the summer while still being able to spend time with friends and family under the summer sun.

2 replies to this post
  1. I’ve gotten better about having real downtime on the weekend without “sneaking in” work as I pretend to take it easy. Now I completely unplug or refuse to enter my home office, just so I’m not tempted!

    Ever since my youngest started preschool, I started taking Fridays “off.” I’d use that day to do fun things or even run errands or meet a friend for coffee but wouldn’t have any client meetings or deadlines. Yes, I had to plan ahead and often stayed up until midnight Thursday to get it all done–but it was totally worth it.

    We are taking a family vacation and I will be “off the grid” for an entire week in July! Yes, I’ll have to work hard leading up to it and yes, it will take a few days afterward to get back on track but I can hardly wait to spend focused time with my family and away from the pressures of the entrepreneur life!

    Great post!! Happy summer!

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