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Determining the Right Time to Take A Break From Your Business

April 4, 2018

Inspiration for women entrepreneurs and female business owners

I was walking up a beautiful road with my husband in Spring 1990 when I said to him, “You know I think it is time?” He said confused, “Time for what?” I responded “Having children because women have timelines you know?” He seemed more perplexed and said, “What timeline?” to which I said, “You know the time it takes to get pregnant, deliver the baby, take time off of work, find a great babysitter, return to work to not lose a job and then plan the next baby!” He said, “Oh My Gosh is that really how women think and plan?”

I couldn’t answer his question honestly because I wasn’t sure if other women planned their family that way; but as a professional “event planner” it made perfect sense to me to “plan the right time” to have my first child. Much to my hopes, we had our first son about 10 months later with a plan to continue my career in higher education – that plan worked out pretty well. But after his entrance into the world, planning more children became unexpected as I had one miscarriage and finally had my second son after months of the doctors telling me it might not be possible. The planning for his birth could have been any time and I wouldn’t have cared; I just wanted a healthy baby….and I got one. So why am I sharing part of my personal life with women entrepreneurs today….don’t worry I have a plan.

Yesterday I wrote a letter to my loyal Women TIES members telling them I was taking a medical sabbatical to deal with some non-life threatening health issues. I thought about taking the three month leave since early January but couldn’t find the “right time” to take or announce the temporary departure until I lost my stepmother a couple weeks ago and realized individual health is the most important thing to human beings.

Determining the right time to announce the leave had to be and done right because I love what I do and who I serve and always have. My members are the most important people to me besides my large family; so saying a temporary good-bye to something you love isn’t as easy as it sounds. With the hard decision come thoughts of losing the business, losing customers, losing market share and never rebounding from the choice. I hope the brave move I am making for my own health, and announcing it with you and the public, gives other women who are afraid to take that step inspiration to follow in my footsteps.

I definitely won’t be the first woman or last to take a break from their business for reasons important to them but I hope if you are given the choice to make that decision you choose what is best for your personal and professional life because we only get one.

Today’s Wednesday Wisdom hopefully makes you think about the timing of decisions in your life and company. Your situation doesn’t have to be personal like mine, it could be deciding to downsize for retirement or scaling up by adding staff or branching out to new locations because the market demands it. It could be planning time to rewrite your business plan or recreate your brand. When business owners are constantly busy in the day-to-day details of running a business, it can be difficult to take a long break from work.

I hope you reflect on when you might need to take a break, the reasons for it and how you communicate it to your clients. Make sure to contemplate what happens to revenue and sales during that time period. Just like I said to my husband on our country road, “Women like to think and plan.”

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2 Comments leave one →
  1. April 4, 2018 11:00 am

    Taking care of yourself needs to be a priority, and often we, as women, forget that. I am sure you have a sound plan in place to keep things running and the loyalty you have built with your clients will certainly not be forgotten. Take care!

    Like

    • April 4, 2018 12:02 pm

      Thank you Kim for reading the post and responding. I do have a plan and some work I have put off for awhile that takes some quiet time. I expect to work on those items as I “rest” my body and mind from the past 12 years as an entrepreneur. I am positive I will rebound with more energy than before. Tracy

      Like

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