Enjoyed your hols did ya? Had a lovely time? Feels good doesn’t it! Until you get back to work…
You should be feeling all revived and brimming with renewed creativity- shouldn’t you…?
So why do you feel so flat and demotivated?
And more than that, you might be feeling disconnected with your business and why you set it up in the first place. : (
Well I’m here to help! *Picture me in red flowing cape, hands on hips with an encouraging grin slapped on my fizog.*
First of all, be reassured that it’s a very common phenomenon. Secondly, know that it’s easy to remedy.
Let’s kick off with a quick delve into why it happens and then we’ll move on to my 6 quick tips to get you back onto the straight and narrow. As well as a few suggestions on how to handle your next holiday so the return isn’t such a bummer.
Why does this post-holiday momentum collapse happen?
The simple and unemotional answer is that any lack of action for any period of time will halt momentum.
It’s kinda in the definition:
The quantity of motion of a moving body, measured as a product of its mass and velocity.
- The impetus gained by a moving object.
“the vehicle gained momentum as the road dipped
Source: Google snippet : )
Without movement you can’t have momentum.
Like a hose pipe merrily flailing away under the pressure and power of the water, it falls lifelessly to the ground when you turn the water off. It takes a bit of effort to twist the tap back on again and a moment or two for the pipe to fill up again
In other words, if you’ve ceased action because you took a break, it’ll take a mo to reboot. And that’s normal.
That said, there are some things that crop up in business that impede your ability to switch the tap on.
Here they are in no particular order:
1. Your plans are too complicated
Do you have a tendency to overload your to do list? Yep, me too! But we both know it doesn’t help.
Over estimating what we can achieve or, even worse, overloading our future selves with things we haven’t managed to squeeze in before our holiday doesn’t help.
Keeping what you’re planning to do in a day to a short a list as possible really helps.
And, as for longer term plans, simpler is usually better. Just one focus per quarter. Or even just one focus full stop… (See next point.)
2. Your key focus isn’t clear
The people who seem to take holidays and get back into it without missing a beat are often focused on one big thing. Like Kay Peacey and helping people use ActiveCampaign more effectively in her membership.
And like me with helping coaches and consultants to earn more from their 1:1 work without slogging their guts out.
If you have one horse, it’s easier to jump back on it!
3. You’re not in a rhythm yet
I’m thinking particularly of content here; when you’re into a rhythm of a specific type of content creation, it becomes increasingly easy to create it.
You tune in to what your audience wants. You start building up a backlog of ideas that you can dip into when you have a creative dry spell.
The theory applies to other things too such as new client onboarding or planning your next launch. Without these processes mapped out, it’s easy to forget how you did it last time and what you wanted to change.
That’s where systems and processes come in…
4. You don’t yet have systems or processes set up that give you the train tracks that keep you on course
Denise Duffield Thomas said in her book Chillpreneur that she only managed to get consistent with her email marketing once she hired an outsourcer to upload it for her. I’ve seen the same thing with podcasters who have editors waiting for their recordings. YouTubers who have promised weekly videos to their audience. Whatever works for you as accountability gets kicked up a notch when you add in systems.It could be as simple as a checklist so you’re not reinventing the wheel each week. Or full on automation so that all you’re doing is writing and recording the words and then your team or your machine takes over.
So how do you get your business mojo back again?
You do of course have the option of just keeping on trucking while you’re on holiday- dipping into emails, responding to scheduled social media posts etc. But in my experience, a full-on brain break is worth the dip in momentum. Your subconscious gets the space it needs to work on those big problems you’ve been feeding it for the past few months (or years…?) and getting burned out won’t help anyone!
So, on the assumption that you are going to switch off fully now and again, here are my 6 quick fixes to get you back on track:
- Forgive yourself
- Take stock
- Avoid a social media scroll fest
- Don’t eat the frog
- Remember your focus
1. Forgive yourself
Do you have a tendency to berate yourself when things aren’t going as smoothly as you’d planned?Please stop!What good is it going to do?Noticing and reducing negative self-talk is one of the biggest achievements of my business journey so far.Having that poisonous voice always in your ear- how is that ever going to help? Taking up your headspace. No thank you.
Now’s the time to take a breath. Regroup and reconnect with what you were originally trying to achieve with your business. Who were you trying to help? How did you want your business to support you going forwards? Remind yourself of those things and thinks will start to ease and flow allowing you to gently get back to work.
2. Take stock
Take 20 minutes or so to note down what went well about the holidays.Show appreciation for the time you had off and remind yourself of the highlights.
Were there things you’d planned that worked and that you’d definitely want to do again? E.g. pre-warning clients and outsourcers of what to do in your absence
What didn’t go so well?We’re not criticising ourselves here.We’re just noticing opportunities to do things differently next time. Just one or two things e.g. writing and scheduling social media posts in advance, which I planned to do but didn’t and regretted immediately as the summer hols kicked in. : )
For bonus points you could put a date and time in your diary to sort those things out for the next time you’re taking time off.You can even work backwards and put some other work in your diary e.g. if you want to write 10 social media posts, schedule some time to come up with 5 new ideas and a different diary slot to look at your old posts and find 5 that you can repurpose.You get the idea.
Stop, wait! I’m not insisting you become a daily journaling superstar.I’m certainly not. But when I felt an invisible block standing in my way of writing this, my first piece of content after a long break, I found a quiet corner and wrote down how I was feeling and what I thought the block might be. How was it trying to help me?
For me, it’s usually some sort of fear about moving forwards.Taking a break allows me to slip back into the comfort zone of inaction and just being a mum for a while. But a little writing sesh got me back on track.
Perhaps I should journal more often…
4. Avoid a social media scroll fest
Are you like me? When I’m trying to ‘do some work’ but am really not in the mood for it I start scrolling social media. Answering the odd DM here, commenting on some people’s posts there.It feels productive but it really isn’t.It’s a delaying tactic. And it can suck you into comparisonitis. ‘Argh, they look like they’ve been posting every day while I’ve been away, how will I ever get any engagement again!’.
Stick in sand time: I do NOT ascribe to the consistency scaremongering.
Yes, in an ideal world you’d be putting out carefully crafted posts on your key social media channels every day and following up with leads and producing blogs and podcasts etc.
But we are not robots.
Us humans need time off.
The big bad algorithm isn’t going to scare me into making me feel bad about not posting for a while.
Anyway, back to the point, watch out for your go-to procrastination techniques. Mine is scrolling LinkedIn, yours might suddenly needing to wash the car or organising your Google files.
5. Don’t eat the frog
If you’re really struggling to get your head in the game and just can’t wrestle your mind back to focus on work then I highly recommend doing something fun to start with.This is the opposite of the popular ‘eat the frog’ concept!
Is there a course that you bought a while ago that you could watch a module of? Is there an informative podcast you’ve been meaning to listen to? Or how about having a zoom call with some biz buddies?Whatever floats your boat, do it. Just for 30 minutes or so.You’ll be surprised how quickly those synapses get firing again.
Start with something fun to get the ball rolling, then have something meaty to dig into as soon as you’ve got that momentum flowing again.
6. Remember your focus
Got the ball rolling a bit now you’ve done something enjoyable? Now’s the time to go back to your plans.
‘But I don’t have a plan, Janine!’
Don’t worry, I’m not expecting you to have a colour coordinated plan with details of what, when and how.
Channel your pre-holiday self and remember what were the big headlines on your perpetual to do list. Was it a launch? Following up with leads? Sending out some pitches to be on podcasts?
Do a brain dump if you need to then pick one.There’s always one that stands out as the one thing that you know deep down will help your business most.Clue: it’s rarely ‘learn about that new social media platform’. Just saying.
What’s your focus then?
So, what’s your focus? Getting more sales? Launching something new? Here’s a handy list of blogs written on the hot topics that people ask me about most often:
Raise your prices (Inc. guide to charge more with confidence)
And if your focus is ‘flipping well earn more without slogging your guts out’ and you’re a coach-shaped-person working 1:1 with your clients then book a free gameplan call with me now. Let’s get that sorted!