I work a lot with busy business owners and one of the things they find most valuable about coaching is that they get to take some time out of their business in order to work on their business, not just in it.
You see, when you’re right in the middle of it, answering emails, dealing with staff members or fighting fires, it can be very difficult to take a step back and look at what you’re really doing. It’s easy to feel overwhelmed, stressed out and tired, all of which does not put you in the best frame of mind to take your business forward. In order to get what you really want out of the business, you must take a time out every now and again.
If you look up ‘time out’ you will see that it refers to the educational parenting technique also known as ‘the naughty step’. Basically you take a child out of the inappropriate behaviour, isolate it somewhere so it has time to think about its actions and their consequences, and once it has calmed down it can come back into normal family life. The other ‘time out’ is the one in basketball, where players get a chance to rest, regroup and talk to the coach about the team strategy.
That is a good metaphor for business. Inappropriate behaviour can be things like shouting at your staff, missing meetings or giving bad customer service because you’re too busy and even getting into financial trouble because you’re taking your eye off the ball.
By taking some time out you get a chance to think about your behaviour, address any problems and regroup so that you can come back with a fresh perspective. This doesn’t have to take long, and in fact there are various good forms of time outs in business, such as:
* having a session with your business coach
* going to a conference where you learn new things
* networking with like-minded people
* going on holiday where you can completely recharge your battery
* going for a short walk in the fresh air
If you make it a habit to do most of these things on a regular basis you will find yourself with enough time out to make a big difference to your business.