Running a one-person shop has numerous benefits. You maintain complete autonomy, take on the projects that work for your business, work the hours convenient for your schedule, and so on. On the flip side, you don’t have the guarantee of a constant paycheck or company benefits, can go days without speaking to another person, and — because success is entirely dependent on you — finding time for a vacation may seem impossible.

Fortunately, it’s not.

The key is preparation. Here’s how you can carve out time to get away:

  • Plan Ahead — Work flow may enable you take spur-of-the-moment day trips but a proper multi-day vacation requires you to carve out time on the calendar. Look at the next 6 to 12 months and isolate weeks (or months) when you want to plan a trip. Also think about when they may be off. Short weeks because of national holidays are prime times to schedule a getaway.
  • Inform — For your repeat clients, begin letting them know as much as three months ahead of time that you’ll be away on vacation for a stretch of time. You also want to be up front with new clients that projects will have to be completed around your already scheduled vacation. The majority of the time, they’ll understand. After all, they like to get away, too.
  • Housekeeping — The purpose of vacation is to escape from the everyday. To ensure you are able to free your mind from daily stresses, get all your finances in order before you leave. Pay all bills up front and follow-up on outstanding invoices. You don’t want to come home to a mountain of bills and past-due invoices.
  • Outsource — If you find yourself in a position where the work is overwhelming as the vacation date arrives, reach out to trusted resources to see if they can cover any deliverables. You do forfeit some revenue to the contractor, but you also keep the client happy, which can lead to additional projects later on.

Remember, one of the lesser reasons you likely set out on the solo path is because you didn’t want to ask permission before you decided to go on vacation. As long as you plan and maintain open lines of communication with clients, your business will thrive even when you’re away.