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Freedom is flexible. Downtime mandatory. Ask any serious entrepreneur.

Chances are you started your business to experience more freedom in your life. With summer officially upon us, I can’t think of a better time for you to make your summer hours declaration.

Summer is the perfect time to start exercising your power of flexibility in work scheduling. The point being that making time for fun is as important to your success as dedicating time for working on your business. And, if you have a family with children who have time off from school over the summer, now is a good time to share more of yourself with them. Forget about making money; make some memories!

When you’re running your own business, you have several options for declaring summer hours. Experiment to find which ones work best for you.

Take the first step!

The first step is choosing a start and end date for your “declared” summer schedule. For example, my local library runs on summer hours from the week after the May long weekend to the day after Labour Day. A local retailer chose the first Sunday in June to the first Sunday in September to shut down for hers.

Then decide how you want to work during this special time of year. Four-day work week? Less? Shorter work days? Split work days? Meeting free days? Evenings only? Four-hour lunches (with or without a siesta)? The best part about an online business is the flexibility with work scheduling. And the fact that so much of the work can be automated and/or time-delayed. There are just so many ways to make summer work for you!

Don’t forget about planning at least one or two mini-vacations around long weekends if you aren’t able to go on a weeks-long vacation this summer.

Final step — Go into your calendar and block off the days and times you are NOT available for work. That way you won’t accidentally book other commitments. Do this now.

Make declaring summer hours an annual tradition. It’s one of the best things you can do for yourself, your loved ones and your business. (Voice of experience talking!) Reminder: you’re not just out there making an impact with your work; you’re out there making a life!

More next time. Until then, remember to LOVE YOUR WORK, whatever it may be.

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