When To Take a Break From Building Your Business?

This post from @chrispattle inspired me to have a discussion with my co-founders about when it's the right time to take a break from building a business. If ever.

We actually took a break after 5 years of building our own enterprise. We worked really hard in those 5 years to find and build THE product that would make us a good living.

We worked for clients to pay the bills together with always trying to get the product out there making money. We actually build a pretty successful e-commerce store here in the Czech Republic, but it's a marginal business that doesn't benefit from having 1 produce designer and 2 developers in the team that much, so we let my brother took over that business and continued on our journey for searching the right product for us.

We ended building Sponseasy with @jordan971 for one year, but as two different units (our team and Jordan's team) we did have a bit different vision for the product and how it should be executed, so to ease the stress we decided not to continue together.

At that time we were really down. We neglected many things in our personal lives just so we could put all the time to kick off the desired product.

And all the failures and things you push behind (like paying bills to the state) really start to build upon your back and start to pressure you. You feel you need to build something profitable ASAP. And that's not good. Building a business truly requires patience.

Thus we decided to take this job for a scaling startup in Czechia as an innovation team. It fitted us actually. We were quite good at spotting good opportunities and bringing them to life thanks to our experience from trying to build our own business.

And that period was actually a blessing for us. We had time to step back, recharge, and refill our creativity. We finally had time to take care of all the personal affairs. We also learned our true value. Because when you build your own business and you feel like you are not successful you are actually not sure how good you are. Being in a bigger team helps you realize that.

And trust me, most of you here are better than the 90% of people who work for others. You got a unique skill set and mindset that can help other businesses grow.

After a year we were rested enough and had a lot of new inspiration to get back into building a business. And that's when the Welder and CrazyMonkeys started.

Btw. if anyone is interested to get more information about why we think taking a break is a good thing for you check out our discussion here: https://youtu.be/1o-Dm3UT1i0

Again, thanks @chrispattle for inspiring me!

  1. 2

    Awesome story, Johan. You always hear of the successes, but these stories are needed equally much.

    1. 1

      Thanks, I agree. Success stories are a great motivator, but having actual stories that aren't necessarily successful can help many to succeed.

  2. 2

    When it gets stable and you have a reliable team with you

    1. 2

      Interesting, I guess that's another time when to take the business. My POV was when you are feeling you are not succeeding. But as you say it's important to take a break even if you are "successful" or stable at least. To recharge. Good point, thanks!

      1. 1

        Thank you for sharing your point of view.
        Don't you think, when it comes to feeling that you're not succeeding, taking a break would be mainly for figuring out what's wrong and working on finding the right path for your business to grow? So it's still going to make you work even harder to fix that. But I guess some people need to recharge as you mentioned to get inspired!

        1. 1

          I think it goes hand in hand really. When you are in the dirt, focusing on succeeding you have a strong tunnel vision. Taking a step back, maybe working for someone else to pay the bills, will allow you to ease the strong grasp and mind focus. That will help you to recharge and see things from a bit different perspective and as you rightly said, it help you with figuring out what's fundamentally wrong that kept you from "succeeding". Or even think about what success means

  3. 2

    Breaks are so important. You might be into Sean Wes / his 'seventh week sabbaticals' if you've not come across them already -> here.

  4. 1

    btw. if there is anyone who has an experience with taking a break, please share it for others who are thinking if they should do it or not!

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