In our adult years, we may think that summer is something that only children get to enjoy, but in reality, the busier we get September through May, the more important the notion of a summer break becomes…especially for small business owners who are in the habit of working nights, weekends, holidays and everything in between.

Perhaps you don’t take vacations. Or, if you do, you always bring work along with you. If you sleep with your smartphone and answer emails round-the-clock, maybe it’s time to take a road trip or spend a week or two someplace tropical.

We’re sure you have a long list of reasons why you shouldn’t take a summer vacation, or why you should buckle down and put in longer hours, but what about the reasons why you should take a physical and mental break (other than the fact that you deserve it!)?

What the Studies Say

According to Glassdoor’s Q1 2014 Employment Confidence Survey, “On average, employees took 51% of their eligible time off in the past 12 months.” And of those employees who have taken vacation/paid time off, 61% reported working while on vacation. Those statistics are for employees with paid vacation; they don’t take into account the number of business owners who fail to take time off to rest and recharge their batteries, a common, yet unhealthy practice among small business owners.

It’s a shame when business owners forgo vacations. Taking time away from one’s business offers many benefits, both physically and psychologically. In fact, taking some much-needed downtime may reduce the risk of heart disease, anxiety, stress, and depression, while boosting productivity. But what about your loved ones and your employees? If you were happier, would a vacation benefit everyone around you too? Absolutely, you aren’t the only one who will benefit from a summer vacation.

Vacations Are Good for Your Health

Terry Hartig, an environmental psychologist at Uppsala University in Sweden told the Washington Post that when people go on vacation, they’re happier and more relaxed. While that’s a no-brainer, too many business owners fail to take time off for themselves, often at the expense of their health. Hartwig’s published study found that summer was by far the happiest time – that’s when there was the steepest decline in anti-depressant prescriptions, the Washington Post reported. We are not surprised!

Here are six reasons why taking a vacation is better for your health:

  • You’ll return to your business refreshed.
  • Your family needs you to take a vacation too.
  • Vacations reduce the risk of stress-induced medical conditions, such as depression, anxiety, and cardiovascular disease.
  • Productivity is increased because happier people tend to be more productive.
  • Taking a vacation can actually improve sleep patterns because when people are overworked, they can have too much on their minds, leading to sleep deprivation and reduced productivity.
  • Remember, Rome wasn’t built in a day – there will be time when you get back.

We can hear you protesting now… “But I don’t have the time. Things will fall apart while I’m gone. I’ll get so far behind, or leaving just isn’t worth it.” This is where and why it’s vital that small business owners get systems and processes in place – so that the business can run like clockwork regardless of whether they are there every day.

AdviCoach excels in helping small business owners to identify inefficiencies in their operations, and challenges them to delegate and streamline processes. If you’re working round-the-clock to keep your business running, our AdviCoaches can help you establish clear strategies so you can effectively step away from your business and get the much-needed vacation you and your family deserve.