When I Took a Forced Time-off for Two Days from My Startup.
This forced vacation provided me with some reflections or insights to practice in life.
Every week, I write an article to share my learning or discovery during my startup journey. Here is the link to my reasons for penning these articles for myself and for many others like me.
This weekend, I did a complete shutdown of my office work. I also disconnected from my emails as well as LinkedIn. I spent this off-the-grid weekend with my family and friends, driving on the busy roads for a quarter of that time.
I started reflecting on the last two days as I opened my laptop. I felt like it was a nice but forced break. Earlier, I was not too keen on taking this off and almost canceled this plan. But then, I gave myself an interesting reason to convince myself of this short break. I told myself that this is the right time to spend with your family & friends, who knows that in the future I might get so much work that I would not get a single day to spare for such get-togethers.
This kind of reasoning is like a double (ego) booster shot. First, it helps you envision your future where you will get more customers in your business to keep you super busy. Second, it convinces you with a logical reason that your analytical mind will find hard to defend.
I quickly grooved back into my routine after this short break. I was checking my emails that had piled up in the last two days. Then, BOOM. There were emails from 2 prospective clients as they left a message to reach out to them for a potential project. I had sent a business proposal to them earlier that week.
This seems like a good sign. It means if I leave my work for some days, more customers will come running back to me. Of course, everyone, including myself, would love to want this belief to come true every time, but we all know this was coincident. So, do not take a vacation with the expectation of getting some positive news every time.
The best therapy is taking a break from routine.
This forced vacation provided me with some reflections or insights to practice in life. They might also help other entrepreneurs ease their long and arduous journey.
1. Helps to break a set pattern
For the last two months, I have been following the same routine every day, except Sundays — every week, every day. I would start up every Monday, being charged up and full of motivation. By Wednesday, this energy and the motivation dropped a bit. By the end of Friday, with no new client query or lead or a piece of positive news, the energy gets drained out completely, and self-motivation hits rock bottom.
Consequently, the Sundays are spent giving a pep talk to myself or diverting my mind to other activities other than work. From Monday onwards, the same energy-sapping routine will repeat itself. Monday — Battery level (100% — Fully charged). Wednesday — Battery level (50%). Friday — Battery level (9% — your system will sleep soon unless plugged into an energy socket).
My two days off from this pattern helped break this monotonous routine. Although I will eventually return to this earlier routine in the next few days, I feel this was a refreshing break. It had rejuvenated my mind and body
2. Helps to get detached from your startup
I went completely off-the-grid during these two days’ time off. It helped me take my mind away from my current state and worries about the startup, revenue generation, finding new leads, etc.
My other entrepreneurs’ friends might not recommend completely disconnecting from your startup (or your ‘baby’ as they fondly call it). But I feel this disconnection helps you to feel detached from your business and keep your identity separate from your startup in the long run.
3. Helps to reconnect with your loved ones
Being an entrepreneur generally makes you a recluse. You might not give adequate time and attention to your family and friends. These short breaks are an excellent way to show off your long-forgotten social skills. These last few days, I called two of my friends and surprised them by visiting their house. I had a great time rekindling our friendship. It also kept me grounded in myself, so I do not get completely lost in my startup woes.
I also became event manager for an important family event during these two days. I made other family members work hard to make this a successful event. Eventually, we all enjoyed this event and spent the day with happiness and laughter. It reminded me to feel grateful for my blessings and try to keep a balance of work and family time in my startup world.
These last two days of hibernation from my startup world and the following reincarnation into the social world turned out to be an interesting and insightful experience.
Wishing you a great week and hope you get lots of positive news at work this week.
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