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If you’re a freelancer or have your own business to run, switching off outside of work hours can be difficult. There is always something you need to do, and this makes relaxing feel impossible. Sometimes you have to let non-urgent tasks wait until the next day. Here are some ways to switch off and enjoy your leisure time.

Have a team you can trust

Having a team you can trust means they can do small tasks or deal with urgent queries whenever you’re not available. It can be easier to switch off knowing that these are being dealt with.

You can make it easier by offering them training to complete tasks they may not be familiar with. You can also set up an easy-to-use invoicing template. As it’s important to keep finances flowing in your business, this simple step can ease some of your concerns when you’re out of the office and spending quality time with family or enjoying important leisure time. Streamlining your invoice process means you can rest assured that your documents are accurate and highly polished, potentially helping you to get paid faster, even though you’re currently unavailable. 

Plan vacations

Planning vacations give you something to look forward to. Even being self-employed has its downsides, so it’s important to take a break from time to time. Going on vacation shows clients and members of your team you’re not available to be contacted, other than in extreme emergencies.

There are lots of locations you can travel to if you want to recharge and relax, depending on whether you prefer a relaxing beach or an activity-filled break.

Make sure clients know when they can’t reach you

Whether you book a vacation, or just take time off to spend at home, if you want to switch off, it’s important to make it clear to clients that you won’t be available. 

This can just be a friendly email thanking them for their support and listing the dates you won’t be available.

 If possible, give them the details of a member of your team, should they have any urgent queries or problems related to your business and their contract with you. Then make sure your team member is aware of the details of your clients and is able to deal with any issues.

Leave your phone at home

Understandably, you need to be reachable a lot of the time, but you should have regular unwinding time, where you leave your phone at home. 

This might be weekly or monthly, for a few hours at a time, and you can ensure friends and family can still reach you in an emergency if they need to. This lets you enjoy family and leisure time without being distracted by your phone.

Nobody should expect you to be on call 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, so it’s reasonable that sometimes you won’t be reachable. Set up an out of office email or voicemail if you need to, but it’s important to set aside time for yourself outside of work.

It can take a bit of effort to change your mindset, particularly if you’ve built up your business by constantly being available. However, time away from your business can let you recharge and prevent burnout, which won’t help you or your clients in the long term.

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