Could you remember the last time you went on vacation? If you don’t, do you feel that it is because work gets in the way? And if you’ve had, do you take your work with you while on vacation? If so, then you’re no different from the countless other American business owners who’ve postponed their time off or take their work while on”vacation”.

According to a 2014 report conducted by ADT, only 55% of small business owners never travel without their phone/personal computers with them. In another study by Funding Circle, about 70% admitted to working on Thanksgiving and another 19% said they felt guilty for taking time off.  As a business owner, time valuable but so is the time you devote to yourself is also important. Not taking time off can not only impact your business but your health as well.

Life’s too short for you to be focused on your business all day so here are some ways you can change that.

Preparations

If you’re planning on going away anytime soon, make sure that your business is ready for your departure first. This means new responsibilities for your employees and letting customers know that you will be gone. It helps to have a written list of emergency contacts available just in case you can’t use your phone or computer. Make sure you complete any unfinished business or address any unresolved issues ahead of time before you leave. Doing so will leave you with one less thing to worry about. If you got important contracts or documents to go over, you can decide to fill them early but never rush to do so. Hold off on signing anything, if you can, until you return. This will give you enough time to review them later when your head is all clear. If you’re a solo entrepreneur, you can find more tips here.

Train your team

A well-trained work staff is always prepared to take control of things even when you’re not around. To prepare your employees, you must not only train them to handle new tasks but also provide instructions in case things go wrong. Some owners may agree that for some reason, things tend to fall apart when they’re gone. Owners who already have experience dealing with certain issues can instruct their employees on how they can deal with them. This could either be knowing what to do when your computers are down or who to call in maintenance emergencies. Also, let your employees know under which circumstance is it appropriate for them to call you. Doing so creates boundaries that would help make it easier for you to relax.

Self-management

Self-management is an essential need that all employers must have to successfully run their business. Without self-management skills, employers will it hard to get things done on time which can bring unwanted stress. It can also interfere with your vacation plans since you won’t be able to enjoy your well deserved time off. To avoid this, manage your time so that you can check up on your business every once in awhile. This means answering your phone or email messages only in cases of emergencies. Make sure, though, that you make yourself available if a really important client has to reach you. Remember that you’re on vacation for a reason so you may want to turn your devices off when you can.

Everyone needs a vacation at some point so if you’re planning on going away, try not to bring your work with you. Let the people you trust handle what needs to be done so you can get some R&R. The less time you spend working, the more time you get to yourself and the better you’ll feel when you return.