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  • KMedia UK

Taking a break and switching 'off'

As small business owners, we are united in the fact that our business is our passion. It’s something which we have built from the ground up, nurturing it with drive and ambition to ensure that it flourishes. Naturally, our business becomes a part of us - the boundaries between our work and personal life blurs as we pour our souls into the companies we have created.

Whilst this is an incredible achievement, how often do we exhaust ourselves, allowing our work-life balance to slip away as we sacrifice yet another lunch break, reply to just one more email before bed, or log in over another weekend just to catch up? At what point does this overtime become an obligation, something which we expect of ourselves? At what point do we allow the ‘over and above’ to become the ‘new normal’, burning ourselves out because our business is our passion. This Mental Health Week, we need to remind ourselves that it’s okay to take a break, that routines create necessary boundaries, giving us time to recharge and become re-inspired.

One of the biggest disruptors of our work-life balance is our phones. They place social media accounts, emails and DMs right at our fingertips, constantly reminding us of all the jobs we could be doing… If you feel that your phone has become less of a blessing and more of a curse, here are some useful features which could help you regain control:

1. Screen Time Limiters Apple’s ‘Screen Time’ setting allows you to see exactly how long you spend on each application. This useful feature allows you to schedule ‘down time’, prompting you when you’ve reached the end of your working day and telling you when it’s time to take a break. Screen Time also allows you to set app limits, notifying you when you’ve reached your daily limit on each particular app. For Android users, the ‘Digital Wellbeing’ setting functions in a similar way, allowing you to set manageable limits and reminding you when it’s time to step away.

2. Establishing Personal and Work Profiles Both iPhones and Androids have settings which allow you to establish two separate phone profiles - one for work and one for leisure. This feature allows you to designate specific apps, contacts and notifications to each profile, helping you to clearly separate your personal and working life.

3. Notification Restrictions It’s all too easy to forget that we can control the notifications which our apps give us, or even silence them completely. If you find that frequent notifications are preventing you from switching off, remember that you have the power to reduce or silence them, helping you to take a break without unwanted interruptions.

4. Calendar Whilst it may sound obvious, your phone’s calendar provides a simple way for you to organise your time and remind yourself of all the fun things you have to look forward to. Use your calendar to plan ahead, carving out time to fun activities, breaks and moments of relaxation.

This Mental Health Week, take a moment to remind yourself that you are doing amazingly! Remember that carving out time for yourself, without feeling guilty, is not a luxury but a necessity. Breaks allow us to recharge and gain perspective - they replenish the creativity and ambition which we (and our businesses) need in order to flourish.

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