Entrepreneur + summer vacation = error?
Finland is in summer holiday mode and the weather couldn’t be any better: sunshine and the temperature in the 60s to 70s. The sun gives me such an awesome boost of energy, I love it! Summer vacation and other traditional holidays are something I can’t really relate to. In a way I’m quite bummed about it, because it would be so nice to be a part of the holiday hype. Especially summer holidays seem to be a time when people are especially giddy about having time off work.
The truth is that I’ve been working in various freelance writing jobs all my adult life. This has meant part time or project-based jobs and working as an entrepreneur. Because of this I have only had one paid summer holiday during my whole career. I spent my free month moving between two cities and starting my own business. Not much of a holiday, I’d say. Since I’ve been building my career for ten years, not having those traditional holidays has somewhat become a norm in my life. I’m honestly not sure what I would do if I suddenly had a whole month ahead of me with absolutely nothing work-related or no plans. I think my mind would start creating something and I’d be back to writing before I know it.
Some people think that an entrepreneur can take a holiday whenever they want, others believe business owners never have time off. Both beliefs have a truth in them, but it really has to do with a lot of things: the entrepreneur’s personality, size of the business and each entrepreneur’s personal priorities. Some business owners need a total break regularly, while some would be happy to work 24/7 all year round. I don’t think there is anything wrong with either option, as long as it works for you.
For me, the best way is to combine work, everyday life and free time in a way that I can take a break whenever I feel like I need one. It can be a couple of days in the middle of the week or a long weekend with nothing work related. Because my laptop is basically my office, I can work just as well in an office building as on a beach towel. So, going on a trip has never been an issue regarding work or the other way around – you can always find some spare time to get the most urgent projects forward.
Honestly, I don’t remember when the last time I longed for a longer holiday was. I feel like this type of lifestyle suits me, which might be one of the reasons why I’ve never really had holidays during my career. It just hasn’t been a priority to me. Does that make me a workaholic? I don’t think so, because it’s not about the fact that I don’t have anything else in my life besides work. It’s all about balance: when your work and free time are in the right balance and you can take a few days off as needed, it makes a great base to live an enjoyable everyday life.
Not longing for holidays is also one of the reasons I believe I’ve found my calling. Because let me tell you, there have been times when all I could think about was my work day being over and having that few hours of free time. I would dread going to work every morning and be so anxious about it. In that time a long vacation would have been a lifesaver and a much-needed breathing break. Now I feel like my work is one of the greatest inspirations in my life, it gives me energy instead of taking it away.
What’s your take on holidays? If you won the lottery and would be able to be on holiday for the rest of your life, would you do it?