It can be difficult to unwind as a business owner. It can feel like you’re ‘on the clock’ 24/7 as emails are coming through and tasks build up. While you’re in the habit of being responsive, helpful, and efficient for your customers or clients, it can be really tricky to engage your brain in switching off to take a proper break. But you deserve time to relax at this special time of year. So, here are 8 ways to unwind over the Christmas period, birthdays, holidays, or when you just need some time to yourself.
Plan in coffee breaks to break up your day
If you have time set aside for breaks ahead of starting your day, you’re much more likely to stick to them. Taking breaks from your work improves your efficiency, helps you concentrate, allows your body to stretch and move, and is much better for your general wellbeing. It doesn’t have to be for long, but taking time away from your computer gives you a chance to slow down.
Get your out of office on
Even if you are checking your emails throughout the festive period, it takes the pressure off you from being responsive to all emails you receive. There will be some urgent ones, but there will also be many that can absolutely wait until you’re back ‘in the office’. Taking away the expectation for you to respond takes the stress away.
Don’t set your alarm
One of the best things about the holidays! During your time off, you don’t need to stick to the schedule you’re used to on your normal working days. Give yourself at least one day where your body naturally wakes up. This gives you the chance to appreciate the start of the day, without the usual morning rush.
Take a break from your phone
It’s so easy to take a look at your phone as soon as you wake up in the morning. And it’s also easy to pick your phone up at every quiet moment. But it’s incredible the amount of time you lose browsing the web and scrolling through social media! We don’t realise it, but being on your phone all the time can increase feelings of stress and anxiety. So, if you can, set aside a certain amount of hours per day where your phone is out of bounds.
Spend time in nature
This really is one of the BEST things you can do. Nature is healing – it’s impossible to feel stressed while walking through the beautiful scenery we have here in the Cotswolds! Spending time in nature lowers blood pressure and lowers stress hormones. We are lucky to have so many stunning places to spend time outside. Here’s a guide with some of the best.
Make a list
Making a list at the end of the week acts like a ‘brain dump’, so you no longer have that mental load. It takes the pressure away from needing to remember what you have to do at the start of the next week, so you can completely switch off for the weekend.
Cook a new recipe
Many people find cooking quite soothing in itself, but there’s nothing more satisfying than trying a brand new recipe and pulling it off. Focusing on a task like this is a type of mindfulness activity where your other worries and concerns get pushed to one side. Here are some festive ideas to get started.
It is scientifically proven that spending time with animals lowers stress levels and improves mental health. If you don’t have a pet, the festive period is the perfect excuse to meet up with family and friends for dog walks. Give them a message now to set a time in the diary.
Do you know what else you can do that will only take a few minutes? Sign up to receive expert help with your business ready for the new year, so you can hit the ground running. Start and Grow Enterprise provides free business support to new business owners, ranging from training, networking, the chance to apply for a grant, and 1-2-1 coaching sessions. Find out more.