When you own your own business it is very easy to get all caught up in doing what you have to do and not worrying about relaxing yourself. While most of the time I will advocate for never stopping and always working to improve your business, this time I will also talk about improving yourself. Following a strict schedule will always help you to get things done and have time to relax as well. Follow these five steps to relax and know when your "shift" in the business is over.
1. Calm down at work. Every business owner no matter how big or small is very invested in his business, and thus one bad review or one unhappy customer will usually leave you up in arms. It is important to remember that while every customer is important in themselves they are not more important than your health or the business. It is important to look at yourself and realize that a person leaving unhappy should not mean that you become angry and all "hyped" up. You need to understand the difference between a person or two versus the entire customer base that you may have. Beyond just this, you need to realize that every little thing may be a big thing, but that doesn't mean it has to be a big thing for you. In other words, understand what deserves getting angry versus what deserves a quick fix and then forgetting about it.
2. Off with the cell phone. The business will not collapse if you left for a few hours, and that is a fact. Yes, huge things can go on when you are not at your business but it you have a good system in place the issues will not cause permanent or un-hinged damage. You need to remember that the key to success is to be well rested, and if you don't learn to leave the business once in a while then you will never be able to properly rest. So shut off the cell phone, remove email notifications, and turn off anything that connects you to your business when you're on break.
3. Take a break. This is not a month long vacation and it should be noticed that the word break and not vacation is used. When you are on your first few businesses it is key to take a moment and rest each and every day. This does not mean that you need to take entire weeks off, but you should take at least a few hours off each and every day. If your business opens from 7 am to 8 pm at night than you should NEVER be there working the entire time. Take at least 2-3 hours off, even if that means taking a table next to your customers and eating a meal with them or just talking with them.
4. Watch TV, Read a Book, Work Out or what ever you do to relax when you are away from the business. This is different than turning off your phone because relaxation doesn't just mean resting your body or head. Instead, it means getting yourself ready for the next day and this also means that you have to unwind and do something that relieves the stress in you. Only you can know what that is and you need to take at least an hour a day to do it.
5. Know when enough is enough. After a certain point in your business life, you need to learn and understand when enough is enough. This means, simply put, that you need to understand when you are ready to give the reins of the place over to a management team, and understand that you've put in systems that will work whether you are there or not. This is key to relaxing because at some point you need to leave the business for a while to see what is out there and start your next venture.
Thus these are five different or unconventional ideas that you should understand in order to relax. Try some out and see how you will find that your productivity, happiness, and "self-worth" goes up every day.