- Schedule at least one mini-vacation each year. When you worked for someone else, scheduling two weeks off was easy. When you work for yourself, finding two days to take off may seem impossible. At the beginning of each year, look at your calendar and block off one week or a four-day weekend and write the word "vacation" across those days. Even if you don't leave town, spend those days away from work relaxing.
Bad Boss Behavior: Bob Banks, owner of Banks Fine Art, a Dallas-based art appraisal and gallery business, travels for business, not pleasure. Whenever the topic of vacations came up between he and his wife, Maloree, he was adamant that he didn't have time to travel unless it was related to their business.
Turning Point: After working seven days a week, year after year, Bob realized his values needed to change. His kids were growing quickly, and he realized he would have only so many more years to spend with them before they went to college and wouldn't want to travel with him.
Good Guy Solution: Bob hired a director for his gallery, giving him more time to do what he enjoys most, appraising fine art. Each year, Bob and his family take at least one, one-week vacation and Bob has finally reconnected with his family. The surprising part for Bob was how well his business ran even when he wasn't there.
Brother home office expert Lisa Kanarek advises corporations and individuals on all aspects of working from home and writes the blog Working Naked. She is the author of several books, including Working Naked: A guide to the bare essentials of home office life.