I believe it was Miles Kington who said something along the lines of: ‘One of the symptoms of an approaching nervous breakdown is cancelling a holiday.’

Running a small business can be an all consuming affair.  Deadlines, financial difficulties, responsibilities to your team  and emotional involvement can create a unique form of stress for a business owner.

Like the Shire Horse, Boxer, in Animal Farm, we can be blinkered in a mantra that success is around the corner just so long as we ‘work harder’.

However whilst working hard often comes with the territory of a small business, it is rarely, if ever, the key to success.  What is more, too much hard work gives diminishing returns, with quality suffering and ultimately leads to ill health.

Instinctively we know the health benefits of a holiday.  At the risk of stating the obvious, a holiday gives your brain a chance to unwind, for you to sleep well, eat well, exercise, laugh, relax.

It is also an opportunity to have new ideas.  All creativity and innovation requires unstructured time, it is not something that can be fitted into a busy schedule.  Taking time off allows you to get what we are up to into perspective and something new to emerge.

So with the holidays upon us, pack up your bags secure in the knowledge that it will do your business good because it will do you good.  And don’t be tempted to cancel!