Why holidays aren’t just good for you – they’re good for your business

| November 4, 2019

There’s a temptation, when you’re running a business, to correlate your levels of achievement with how hard you’re working, how many hours you’re putting in and how little sleep you’re getting.

My business and life partner Melissa and I believe that while hard work is obviously needed to get a business off the ground – so too is rest and proper relaxation.

Everyone knows the results of the ‘hustle approach’: stress that in turn feeds negativity, diminishing energy levels, losing sight of the big picture and so on.

Neither you nor your business gets the best results from your efforts – the antidote in our view is simple… make taking a break mandatory!

We found regular short breaks are essential – not just for our physical and mental health, but for the health of our business too.

We set out in this business 19 years ago after a chance holiday encounter with a drink we’d never heard of in a Washington DC café. Lots of the people in this café weren’t drinking coffee – they were drinking something that looked like a café latte but we learned was called “chai latte”.

Almost two decades later, we’re happy to be operating a small $2 million+ business and our brand – Bondi Chai – and our products continue to enjoy award-winning success. Much of that success we put down to our commitment to taking regular short breaks – of at least 5 days, four times a year – that are purposely taken out of our work schedule, not our holiday calendar.

We run our business from our home overlooking idyllic Port Stephens – a ‘blue-water paradise’ that draws a steady stream of holidaymakers throughout the year. It’s a beautiful, ‘holiday’ place to live and work, but even here it’s easy to get bogged down in the day-to-day dramas of running a business.

When you’re running a small business you wear many hats – and maybe the most important of those is ‘thinking strategically’. But most days it’s hard to think at all when the phone’s ringing, the inbox is clogged and everyone wants a piece of you.

So, if thinking and ideas generation is one of the key activities we as business owners bring to our business, and to do our best work we need to be away from the desk, then short breaks surely aren’t just nice to have, they’re a must… they’re almost a responsibility.

For example, it was on one of our regular sabbaticals where we first talked about needing help running the day-to-day operations of the business so we’d have more time to think strategically. The incredible thing was that no sooner had we made that decision than precisely the right candidate came into our lives and helped our business grow significantly.

It’s another example of how holidays aren’t just a break – used the right way, they’re of great benefit to you and your business.