Let’s face it, even when you aren’t your own boss, taking time off can seem impossible. There are fears of being seen as lazy, missing out on important milestones and getting work piled up for when you come back.

On top of that, solopreneurs get the added fear of having all of their hard work simply crumble back to square one if they aren’t constantly working on their company. But this article isn’t about how working 80 hour weeks is good for you or your business.

Time off actually helps your business

It’s the lesson of just about every Christmas movie: no matter how important your work or business is, you need to make time for you, and your family and friends.

But of course, this isn’t just about religious or national holidays. No matter when you decide to take time off work, it actually improves both your work and your life.

time off work to boost productivity in business

Leonard Mlodinow, a physicist, shared scientifically-based insight on the benefits of time off in his book Elastic:

“Though some may consider “doing nothing” unproductive, a lack of downtime is bad for our well-being, because idle time allows our default network to make sense of what we’ve recently experienced or learned.”

“Idle time allows our default network to make sense of what we’ve recently experienced or learned.”

How to plan a holiday

There is a whole lot more pressure as a solopreneur to know exactly how and when to take a holiday. After all: if you’re not working on your business, who on earth is?

The answer to find the time to take a break is simple: understand your limits and your business very well.

How to plan a holiday as a solopreneur

Everyone has a limit and you need to know yours. How much workload can you handle before you risk burnout? How much downtime do you need to reset?

The same goes for your business. What are your busiest seasons? What exactly depends solely on you and what kind of issues need immediate attention? Here’s how you can find out.

Gather data to find out when you can take time off

Make sure that all of your data-gathering efforts are tied together. If you have an online form that you use to collect leads, service requests or even feedback, integrate with your Google Analytics and Tag Manager.

Advanced Settings

You can also use Real-time Data Capture to keep track of how often and where your online form is abandoned.

All this data will show you what times of year you’re busiest and when you can afford a vacation.

Use automation for e-mails and tasks

The future is here already, get used to automation. Especially when running your own business it’s very easy to find yourself buried in work without time to look for automation processes.

But automating at least some of your processes takes less time than you think. Plus, it represents a monumental weight taken off your shoulders and a whole lot more time to focus on more important projects.

Create a sales funnel where your customers make requests via an online form. Use an autoresponder to send an automatic thank-you e-mail to the client and create a task on a productivity tool or schedule a meeting on Google Calendar via integration.

This way even if work gets piled up while you’re away, it automatically is saved and set up according to the priority you give it.

Notify your clients

Having a personal and transparent connection with your clients is one of the benefits of becoming a solopreneur.

Depending on your business, your clients already know that you are on your own. So letting them know ahead of time that you’ll be out of office shows that you respect their time and gives them the opportunity to tell you what they need to be prioritized.

You can easily get all of your clients’ emails in one place by exporting the submitted data in your online form builder. And set up an additional notification to be sent to new submissions letting them know that your response might take a while longer.

Get a partner you can trust

So far you’ve seen how time off work improves your performance, how gathering data and automation can help determine when and how long to take a vacation and that transparency is key.

But there’s still that compulsive need to check your work emails even when you’re sitting under the sun at a paradisiac beach.

That solution is harder to come by. While you can set up automatic emails letting you know as soon as a new request is submitted, it’s harder to tell when there’s an emergency only you can deal with.

This is why coaching somebody to filter the different events that can happen within your company is so important. Though, of course, it’s understandable if that can’t be done yet when you’re a solopreneur.

Get creative with your downtime

Like mentioned before, both money and time can be tight when you are an entrepreneur. So a 2-week vacation to a spa in Fiji sounds amazing, of course, but you can create a relaxing and de-stressing experience in a less fashionable destination.

Also, 2 weeks can be too much downtime for you. This is why you need to understand your limits and capabilities to find that perfect balance, and know how much time you need to recharge.

That solution is harder to come by. While you can set up automatic emails letting you know as soon as a new request is submitted, it’s harder to tell when there’s an emergency only you can deal with.

Get more out of your downtime with powerful and automated online forms, check out some free form templates you can use for your website.