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8 Steps for Woman-Owned Businesses to Plan a Stress-Free Vacation

Woman entrepreneur preparing for her vacation
Feel empowered as you prepare for your summer vacation

Have you ever taken a vacation, only to spend hours in your hotel room answering emails and taking unscheduled client calls instead of relaxing by the pool or playing with your kids? Or have you been putting off a much-needed break because you dread the inevitable pileup of work in your inbox that you’ll have to tackle when you get back?


Perhaps you’ve taken a few days off work, unplugged your laptop, and even deleted your email app off your phone, only to find your mind keeps wandering back to all the work you’ll have to catch up on when you get back. You can’t seem to shrug off that feeling of dread and end your vacation feeling even more stressed and anxious.


If any of that sounds like you – I have good news. It doesn’t have to be that way!


Taking time off can be stress-free, relaxing, and productive. Here’s my tried-and-tested, 8-step process to reduce worry and anxiety and help you feel calm, confident, and empowered as you plan and take your well-earned break!


To best support and nurture yourself and to give you ample time to prepare, start these 8 steps at least 2 weeks before you head out on vacation. Effective woman-owned business vacation planning ensures that your business continues to thrive while you take a well-deserved break, allowing you to return refreshed and ready to tackle new challenges.


Step 1: Plan for Your Time Off


No, I’m not referring to hotel bookings or reservations at that fancy restaurant you’ve been wanting to check out (although that’s fun too!). Being productive even when you’re on vacation comes down to planning how you will manage your time away.


My biggest tip is to plan for an extra week in addition to the time you will be away. It sounds unusual, but it works! Clearing off your schedule and having all your content prepared for an additional week after you return from your vacation gives you a whole week to ease back into work mode. It also provides buffer time to prepare for the coming weeks – giving you ample time to sort through your inbox and perhaps even explore your creativity! Doesn’t that sound much better than having to hit the ground running after some restorative time off?


Step 2: Organize Your Tasks & To-Do’s


Once you’ve figured out how much time you need to plan for, start organizing your tasks and your to-do list for when you are away and the additional week. If that feels overwhelming, begin by listing out all your recurring tasks. What are some things that have to get done every day/week/month to keep your business running smoothly?


Some common recurring tasks woman-owned businesses often have include:

  • Writing email newsletters

  • Posting on social media

  • Paying bills

  • Preparing and releasing podcast episodes

  • Responding to emails

  • Scheduling and registration

  • Recording classes or workshops

  • Writing and publishing blog posts

  • Following up with clients


Next, take a look at your calendar or agenda to see if you have any one-off tasks to be completed within the time frame of your vacation, such as renewing an annual subscription or meeting a deadline for a grant application. Add those to your list too.


Step 3: Schedule Time Blocks


Next, schedule time blocks in your calendar to do the tasks! I recommend scheduling at least three time blocks in the couple of weeks before your time off and three more in the week after you return. Setting these time blocks for at least 2 hours each (if not more) works for me and gives me time to take breaks between tasks, but you may find a different system works for you.


These time blocks allow you to focus on completing specific tasks without the constant interruptions that can derail productivity. By allocating dedicated time for essential tasks, you can ensure that everything gets done efficiently and effectively, paving the way for a smooth transition back to work after your vacation.


Step 4: Plan What Gets Done, When


Now that you’ve scheduled time blocks to prepare for your time away, assign tasks to execute during those periods. Whether it’s batch creating content or automating systems to run smoothly while you’re away, plan when everything gets done and assign it to a specific time block.


You might use one time block to create social media posts, another to write your email newsletters. Assign another time block to automate your emails to current clients or for your membership program. Don’t forget to plan out the time blocks after your vacation! My favorite thing to do is setting aside a time block for catching up on emails, planning my upcoming marketing strategies, and taking some creative time.


Step 5: Work in Batches for Recurring Tasks


One thing that will help you be ultra-productive during the time blocks you’ve set aside for specific tasks is working in batches. If you are working on creating social media posts, work on creating all your social media posts for the entire week or month. If you are writing email newsletters, try writing out a few of them at the same time.


Batching reduces cognitive strain on your brain because you’re not switching between different activities. It not only allows you to remain focused and be super efficient with your tasks but also saves you a lot of time! This method is particularly beneficial for woman-owned businesses juggling multiple responsibilities, as it streamlines your workflow and maximizes productivity.


Step 6: Automate with Technology


We’re fortunate to live in the 21st Century because now we can use technology to automate tasks in our business! Automate the delivery or performance of all the content you created for the time you will be away (and the week after!) using software.


Set up your email newsletter to be sent automatically on a specific date via your email software provider. Automate your class content to publish on a future date. Schedule social media posts ahead of time using software. This saves you a ton of time and ensures that you can continue your business marketing efforts and serve clients while on vacation. Remember to set up an auto-responder away message for your email inbox too!


Automation tools can handle various aspects of your business operations, allowing you to maintain a strong online presence and client communication without being physically present. This way, you can enjoy your vacation with peace of mind, knowing that your business is running smoothly.


Step 7: Follow the Plan


This step is critical to staying productive and stress-free while on vacation – stick to the plan! If you’ve followed Steps 1-6, you have a solid plan that will help you continue to serve your clients, stay visible (especially on social media!), and run your business while you’re away, so follow it as closely as possible.


It may feel like your weeks are incredibly full in the few weeks before you leave on vacation, but it’s all going to help you feel calm and confident that your business is running smoothly even while you’re taking time off – so stay the course! This discipline is particularly important for woman-owned businesses that rely heavily on consistent engagement and client interaction.


Step 8: Enjoy Your Vacation


Ready for the best step? It’s now time to kick back, relax, and enjoy your vacation! You’ve earned it – and with this 8-step process, you can be sure that everything keeps chugging along in your business as you refresh, rejuvenate, and reinvigorate yourself to serve your clients even better!


By following this comprehensive plan, you not only ensure that your business remains operational during your absence, but you also set yourself up for a more enjoyable and stress-free vacation. Remember, taking time off is essential for your well-being and productivity. Embrace it fully, knowing that your careful planning and preparation have paved the way for a smooth and successful break.


 

Ready to Enjoy a Stress-Free Vacation?


As a dedicated woman entrepreneur, you deserve a break without the worry of work piling up. Let's create a personalized plan to ensure your business runs smoothly while you enjoy your well-earned time off. Schedule a free 15-minute Clairity Consult with me today, and let's make your stress-free vacation a reality!

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