What does it take to build a successful small business? If we knew, we’d all be millionaires, but two things to add to the mix may be surprising to you: time off and exercise.
Taking time off when starting up a business may be counter-intuitive, but according to an article in the Wall Street Journal (“Time Off Is No Option: It’s Required,” by Sarah E. Needleman), time off is essential to avoid burnout and jumpstart creativity. One entrepreneur interviewed for the article describes how, in the day-to-day grind of building his business, he feels like he’s “constantly looking at trees and never seeing the forest.” (Sound familiar?) Vacations offer him a “mile-high perspective” over his business that he can’t get when his head is buried in his laptop.
Can’t afford to take off a week? Go away for a three-day weekend. Or tack on a day or two after a business trip to see sights and visit friends. It might also help to think of vacations as networking opportunities. And remember, with a smartphone or laptop and a wireless connection, you can easily keep tabs on your business while away.
Exercise is the cure-all for many ills: it helps you lose weight, prevents disease, and aids in getting a good night’s sleep. And, according to blogger Derek Flanzraich, it can also help your small business succeed. How? By boosting your energy level, sharpening your focus, and helping you come up with better ideas—all things an entrepreneur needs and could use more of. (Need help on starting up an exercise regimen? Derek’s got you covered. Read the comments for some interesting real-life tips from readers.)