When you’re a busy cake maker running your own business it is so easy not to think about your needs and your time off. And as women we often put ourselves to the back of the queue anyway, but when you add a growing business into the mix – we simply forget about ourselves completely! But it is so important that we all put a stop to that NOW. Nip it in the bud before we burn out. Taking quality time off is not only important for our own sanity but for our business and family life too.
Your Time Off Symptom checklist:
1. You Can’t Concentrate
You sit down to complete a quote but find your mind has gone BLANK!
2. You’re Feeling Overly Emotional
Your emotions are constantly getting the better of you. You’re either SHOUTING at loved ones or SOBBING in the corner.
3. You Are Constantly Online
You can’t remember the last time you switched off your phone/laptop/computer/tablet and just RELAXED.
4. You Are Starting To Resent Cakes
Flour, sugar, eggs, cakes, sugar flowers you used to love it all but you’re beginning to HATE every order you take on.
5. You Don’t Have Enough Time
You feel that there is just NOT enough time in the day to complete everything.
If your feeling any of these then you need to STOP now and take note! These feelings act as a little warning bells and are basically signalling for you to slow down. It may seem crazy to take a break when you’re feeling like this. But trust me, stopping will allow you to clearly see the state of your business, health and other needs. Sometimes we don’t know what we are lacking, missing or have until we do stop and take stock.
On a personal note it happened to me. I have always had to manage my time due to the state of my health (I have ME./EDS). But I worked out I could basically control these illnesses by taking regular naps everyday, though that was not quality time off.
Quality time off was something I never had.
I was always working. If I did catch up with friends and family, I could never pay attention properly as I was always thinking about what else had to be done.
The moment it all came to head was one cold afternoon in Cheltenham. I was sat on a wall outside Starbucks talking to my mentor on the phone. Silent tears rolling down my face as I came to realisation that my business was failing fast and I just didn’t know what to do. As he offered words of advice the one sentence that stood out was “Pia you have to stop. You need time off NOW”.
So I did and I am so glad I did.
Yes, I had to do a few other things before I took my time off. But a week later I went to my grandparents in country and took a relaxing five days off. The first in goodness how many years. When I look back that telephone call completely helped me shape the way I run my life and business today.
You Don’t Need Permission
It is all too easy to get wrapped up in the day to day running of our businesses and lives. When we do take quality time off we can come back to our normal lives with a different outlook. We are able to make clearer decisions, understand how to move forward, and grow our businesses for the better. As well as being the best version of ourselves as a friend, wife, mother, sister and business woman.
One thing I will stress, is that we don’t need permission to take quality time off.. and things will not all fall apart. (Though if you do need permission, I am giving it to you now!). We all need a little “Me Time”, whether it is with friends, loved ones or by ourselves. So go forth and arrange some quality time off. Take an hour to read a magazine, or go for a walk in the country, take a day in the spa or book that week away. Do whatever it takes for you to recharge, relax and refresh your mind and body.
Now to make sure you keep arranging quality time off, so here is a little homework!
Schedule four blocks of quality time off over the next 6 weeks (and yes even in the Christmas madness you need quality time off). Then repeat. Simple!