How To Actually Take Time Off When You’re An Influencer (And Not Lose Traction…)
Having a job that relies almost solely on social media can actually be exhausting. It’s like a hungry pet that needs feeding, or else it might die. Or eat you – something just as bad.
Having another 8 hours job that keeps you busy all day can physically finish you.
So at the beginning of April, I have decided that I need a break from all and I bought my tickets to Dubai. The first day of me taking a week “off work” because basically, I was too stressed out and fed up, it was amazing.
I felt this would be also an appropriate time, as it is officially holiday season and some of you may be planning travel somewhere nice. I figured out I can also write about why you need to take a break from your work and more importantly how you can do it. Because seriously, how do you take a break from something that requires you to be constantly posting, or responding on? Especially when, we don’t have assistants or PR’s helping with this and I’m effectively running it all by myself?
There’s always the common misconception that this job is easy. The hardest struggle is the fact that it’s almost impossible to switch off.
For as long as you have your phone in your hand, you have a portal to however many thousands of people try and connect with you via your applications. It can be draining when sometimes you just want a little bit of a break.
Some people may be here thinking “what is the big deal? – Why can’t you just turn your phone off and not post on Instagram for a few days? You don’t have to post every single day?” – And yes, they are right. I absolutely don’t have to.
But if you want to grow and build your own business, it’s about not losing traction. Posting articles consistently on my blog was one of the key factors that helped my growth, and to put it in real life context. If you miss that all your engagement goes away.
In fairness, I wanted and needed that break so much. I wasn’t too bothered about at that time.
But when you’re used to work work work for growing at a certain rate, it can totally be worrying, making your time off be less enjoyable. So yeah, stepping off the wheel isn’t all that easy when you know there will be consequences. And it’s so difficult to get back on track after a great holiday like iIhad.
Now, I hope you understand why bloggers spend during their holidays, like 50 eur for a 200mb data package to upload that photo made on a deserted beach at 5am in the morning. Or worse, feeling the pressure to post on instagram while they have a fight with their boyfriend.
So, how do you take some time off as an Influencer without basically fucking up everything and losing traction?
First, you have to define what a week off is for you.
Digital detox and social media blackout? Posting just once a day? Taking a break from your daily Instastories so you can just linger on in your pyjamas with no makeup ? (although, I don’t care if I go on stories with no makeup )
For me, I’ve cancelled all of my work-related engagements that week and I felt so relaxed.
I posted twice a day on Instagram and uploaded Instastories, simply because it’s like a drug. And I wanted to show you Live what beautiful places I’m visiting. Of course, I didn’t want to lose the traction, and I still wanted to be able to connect with everyone.
My holiday meant focus on doing small, enjoyable things without no pressure. Like relax on the beach, shopping and visiting unique places. Chat and go out with my friends.
My recent weeks over the past years have looked a bit like this: get up at 7 in the morning for my work, lunch meeting, event or another meeting in the evening – and it’s been mentally exhausting. That week has been replaced with seeing my real-life friends (which is great because nobody gives a shit about Instagram and when you say the word engagement, they all think proposals and weddings…) and doing what I want at a less-pressured pace.
Put Your Out Of Office On!
Because I’m working in an actual office, I still could write “for any urgent enquiries, please contact XYZ until my return”. But my email as a blogger, still works on and it just say that I am on holiday with limited access to wifi but would reply when I can. Unless you have your own PR’s responding to your emails, if you have something important you still have to do it for yourself because you can loose some opportunities.
Of course, the joy of this is, you can still pick and choose who and what you reply to. Have an amazing campaign slide into your inbox whilst you’re away? Obviously you still reply!
Even if I’m on holiday I still check my emails as often I have wifi, because I’m addicted.
Annoying problems that can make this all harder
So I have defined what my version of a week off looks like. The real issue is people don’t understand why you’re still posting on social media.
When a shopkeeper goes on holiday, the shop is closed. No access, no visibility.
Whereas when you’re a business and your business is your actual self – you’re still there, posting, and visible. You are still using social media to scroll, engage, and post. So it seems weird to take a week off but still be using your work tool. I suppose it’s almost like taking a week off in an office, but still coming in the next day wearing your casual outfit and instead of doing work you sit at your computer and watch a movie.
“But she’s not really taking time off because she’s still on social” – I’ve heard people say about other influencers who are “taking a break”. Ok I get you, but it’s not weird at all. You’re just keeping things ticking along. It’s a mindset change. Just do it anyway. You aren’t just a business – you still want to use social media for enjoyment rather than work. So just use it as you want to and try not to worry of what people may think.
So no matter how you do it, or what you do to find solace in this noisy Social world, make sure you do it.
The facts and figures are all there about how social media can negatively impact us, and whilst I know it can be an incredibly inspiring and exciting tool, I also know it can be a peddler for mental health problems unless you’re using it smartly.
Don’t ever feel afraid of taking a break. When it comes to your space on the Internet, you are your own boss.
So…stay tuned for more stories from Dubai and Vienna. I’m getting back on track!