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The Stress of my first big holiday

22nd Jul 2017
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Korkula Island
Croatia

Strava Folks

This months blog is brought to you from far sunnier climes than my usual Northumberland retreat, I am currently on a 2week family holiday on the amazing Croatian Island of Kortula.

As we had not had a big family holiday since starting the business I reluctantly agreed to this last November. I really want (need) my 31.03.2018 accounts to see me going from being self employed to actually owning a business. 

So as part of this I put together a fairly aspirational business plan, which in turn meshes in with personal goals, holidays, both cars need changing, reducing mortgage pension and investments etc.

I was ok the whole holiday thing as I felt I deserved the break as well as I have grafted quite hard these last 3 years and you need to see the rewards at some point. More importantly my wife and daughter support me throughout the highs and lows and they love a holiday, pampering and having a good time.

The planning was going well until I hit mid June then realisim and panic started to set in. June was the end of Q1 of my new business plan and really wanted to nail it. I was a little behind but had a few  jobs that were easy enough to finish so if I knuckled down it was doable. But I then had to factor in the 2 weeks I was away as this was new territory to me.

I have a lot on at present which is good, but I am sometimes not the best at planning and jump around too much to please those who shout, but who are often not urgent.

I had to take a step and look at what achievable so grouped urgent work, work needed to hit q1 targets, next came new work that would be good to get off my desk then things could wait until I returned.

I managed to make good progress to end of June but my list of tasks was constantly growing, I had got some new enquiries for good potential clients which I didn't want to miss out on because of this damn holiday, I was starting to regret booking it, but dare not mention this to my family. 2 weeks to go and full stress and panic started to bite. I just had to knuckle down and do what I could. My 2 Xero girls (Glennzys Angels as they are now known, TV series coming soon) really stepped up and took a lot the time consuming easier work off me. It showed I can rely on them when my backs are to the wall, which means a lot. What I also under estimated is how good my relationships are with clients a few last minute requests where met with I am sorry but it will have to wait until I was back. Something I would not have dared say in year 1. 

Again clients were ok with this. I worked a few 12 hour days in the run up worked until midnight the night before packed my bag at 11.00am then went to airport at 12.30 and joined the family on holiday mode as I sat on the aeroplane ready to go. I took my iPad with me for emails. A week in I have had 2 emails that needed dealing with and wonder what all the panic is. So in summary a 2 week break was doable but you cram the 2 weeks into the 3/4 before you go.

Just tell my wife and child that. Laters folks a swim and a glass of wine is calling

 

 

Replies (7)

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By Red Leader
24th Jul 2017 13:40

Well done. Holidays are important and we do have to plan them into our self employed lives. I remember many years ago when I was subbing for another CA, a holiday for me meant (a)less money coming in and (b)more money going out. Rather disconcerting but the holiday does have to be taken nevertheless for the sake of recharging batteries and for the family. Or you get into the family going on holiday without you!

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Replying to Red Leader:
By Glenn Martin
25th Jul 2017 13:23

It's been a big success Red Leader as not spent this much time together for a long time. My wife is a nurse so also works a lot.

They are wanting to book straight up to come back as soon as I get back

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By youngloch
24th Jul 2017 17:42

There's nothing like a deadline be it 31 January, Christmas or a summer holiday to give you focus!

I normally find that in the run up to the summer holiday I find myself dealing with all those small tasks that, normally, I might have in a "to do" pile but out of "guilt" of going away I find I get done.

Having a break is vital for motivation.

My personal routine becomes getting up at 7 to secure the sunbeds close to the kids pool, park myself up with the laptop for an hour and half in peace and quiet as the sun rises, check emails and make sure the office is all under control, get a few invoices issued (over the cloud now) and then meet the wife and the kids as they come down for breakfast.

I then grab my coffee knowing all is fine for at least the next 24 hours and normally finding I've billed three times the cost of the holiday whilst on it just by attacking the WIP list! #fulfilled

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Replying to youngloch:
By Glenn Martin
25th Jul 2017 13:18

You must be a seasoned pro with your holiday operation. I prefer to send the wife down the pool with the towels and I check towels

I did send a few bills out from here but internet is poor as on an island. Would be struggling to bill 3 x the holiday costs though the way my family go at spas and ice cream

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Man of Kent
By Kent accountant
24th Jul 2017 23:24

Told you it would be fine :o)

Says me doing exactly what you did in the lead up to your holiday!

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Replying to Kent accountant:
By Glenn Martin
25th Jul 2017 13:21

Nowt like a bit of stress and pressure to focus the mind.

I have enjoyed the break though, it took me 5 days to get work out of the system then really got into it. Just need a good August now to clear the Amex bill when it lands

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By Sheila Morrison
31st Jul 2017 14:29

I assume you are actually in Korcula. Beautiful island famous for its jewellery designs.

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