When you start your own business, the idea of being your own boss may be what attracted you to entrepreneurship. Maybe you thought that you’d have flexibility and freedom and work/life balance. But we’re sorry to report that in most cases, owning a business means working harder and longer than your corporate friends and neighbors. But finding work/life balance in the form of vacation and time off is crucial to avoiding burnout. Here’s why you should do something for yourself outside of your small business. 

Small Business Owner Statistics on Work/Life Balance 

If you own a business, you already know how hard it is to get away to enjoy your life. The latest surveys of entrepreneurs show us that: 

  • 25% of small business owners work more than 40 hours a week. 
  • 69% say they answer business emails in their “free” time. 
  • 91% work on the weekends. 
  • 26% never stop thinking about their company. 
  • 16% haven’t taken a vacation in over four years. 

It probably not surprising that small business owners work a lot. But did you know many of them give up vacation time to keep their business running? One study showed that only 57% of small business owners take a vacation. For those that leave, it’s far less than the traditional two weeks that make up the benefits at most traditional jobs. If they do make it on holiday, 67% of those surveyed say they check into work at least once a day while they’re gone. 

But there are also positive signs out there that pressures of small business can lighten over time. The Alternative Board found

  • 44% of business owners take 16 vacation days or more each year. 
  • 26% take 11 to 15 vacation days annually. 
  • 19% take six to 10 days off a year. 
  • 11% take one to five vacation days annually. 

Small business owners do own a piece of what most people believe to be a piece of the American dream. But taking time off is crucial for any worker, whether they are a cog in the wheel at an enterprise organization or a small business owner. Here’s why every small business owner must prioritize time off. 

Why Vacation Matters to Small Business Owners 

When you work for yourself, you have unparalleled freedom but also a responsibility. Both are rewarding in their own way, but the responsibility and pressures of small business owners can take a toll on you, your relationships, and your health. Entrepreneurs must deliberately plan for time off; it’s not like someone is going to hand a mental health day to you.  

Speaking of mental health, running your own business is not only physically but also mentally demanding. Small business owners continuously wonder about making payroll, market share, supply chain, and sales, plus all the other things necessary to run a business. It’s mentally straining, and it can burn out even the most resilient business owner.  

To get the time off you need, you may need to budget in your own PTO and work far enough ahead to allow you to step away for a while. Small business owners should also learn to delegate important tasks to trusted employees to give themselves a break.  

Looking to Take Time Off?

One way you can get more time off is to hire trusted team members. That’s where Exelare can help. We offer employers a software tool to help them staff up during busy times to help lighten the load. Call on us today for a free demo of our software.