The Importance of Taking Breaks as a Business Owner
Taking care of a family while running your own business is hard enough, but also finding the time to take care of yourself? Well, that can sometimes feel impossible. Still, it’s important to make your health a priority, as it not only makes you a better business owner, but a better person, too.
Ready, set, go
When we decide to open our own businesses, we’re too excited in the beginning to see how quickly our health can take a turn. We dive in, head first, too focused on success to really see what’s going on around us.
The first month (and sometimes year) seems to fly by. Before you know it, you’ve had your own business for the entire first year without taking time off, pushing relationships aside to ensure your business flourishes.
And if we’re lucky enough to feel truly comfortable and confident in our business, we’ll eventually realize we can’t continue to run on the hamster wheel forever. Our friends and family will convince us to take a small break and that one tiny break will show us how okay it is to step back and enjoy what you’ve built.
But, it can be difficult.
Whether you run the show by yourself or have fifty employees, owning a business can feel exhilarating and enclosing all at the same time. You’re scared that if you take one minute of your day to focus on yourself, it could all implode. And you most definitely can’t make someone who has never owned their own business understand.
The beauty of balance
When I started my first business, I had just given birth to my son. I had no idea of what to expect. And you’d think going into my second business, I would have learned my lesson but that was not the case. As a mother, wife and business owner, I had to learn the hard way what it would take to take back the ropes of my personal life.
I’m so fortunate to have friends and family members who quite literally force me to take breaks and, I will say, one of the best things I did was get back into the gym.
As business owners, we truly think we need to continue to go, go, go every single hour of every day, but in reality, our brains function better when we make ourselves take a break. In the beginning, these breaks may feel forced. Then, once we see how much of a better business owner (and individual) they make us, they become a necessity. We stop seeing breaks as forced and find ourselves scheduling breaks to take care of ourselves.
Find what works for you
My self-care routine isn’t crazy but it works.
I make sure I’m taking time out of my daily schedule to take actual lunch breaks. I wake up extremely early so I can end work earlier than usual. I also get my best ideas when the rest of the world is asleep. I schedule one day a week to take either half of or the entire day off to spend time with friends and I always ensure my clients are well-aware that any time outside of office hours is reserved for my family.
It’s important to take time to hit the reset button, whatever that may mean to you.
I encourage you to take one day this week to do something for yourself that has nothing to do with work. Disconnect from the world by turning your phone off. Find a nature trail for a quiet jog, schedule brunch with friends, find a new yoga class to attend or even take a day off to explore the city. Your mind (and your business) will thank you for it.
This article was submitted by Kait Fontenot, a native of Mandeville, Louisiana and founder of Kait Studio. A full-time designer, retail consultant, mom and wife, Kait values being transparent, sharing with other parents ways to overcome struggles with parenting, maintaining a healthy lifestyle and juggling a successful career. Check out her Instagram feed for inspiration!