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Copyright 2005

Why Take Time Out

Being a Mum is a busy occupation, whether you mix it with business or not. It is very easy for Mums to run around after everyone else day after day, unless they consciously decide to look after themselves, too.

Looking after yourself just means making some time for things you want to do; it might be five minutes with a coffee and a magazine every day or a whole day shopping once a fortnight, it might be  a monthly dinner with girls friends or a weekly dance class. As long as it is for you, then it is a valid use of your time.

Remember that even a few minutes can refresh you enough to go on.

Mums are also people and entitled to some peace and happiness in their lives, but if you find it hard to believe that or follow through on your own happiness, here are some other reasons why you should take some breaks for yourself.

Work effectively

You can only work for so long before you get tired. Once you are tired, it is easier to make mistakes and not absorb information. Obviously, it will then take you more time to rectify your errors and get back on track.

Any aspect of your work that requires physical repetition (eg looking at a screen for hours, typing, bending over a craft table, smiling at customers) will lead to those muscles becoming strained. Taking regular breaks gives those muscles a rest and makes sure you can work effectively for longer. Without breaks, you may last three or four hours without a problem; taking five minutes breaks throughout the day could let you work well for eight or nine hours.


Doing the same tasks day in and day out will stagnate your mind. To be creative and think of new ways to do things, you need to experience variety in your life.

Thinking about something totally different, be it admiring a beautiful garden or reading a fiction book, will freshen your mind. It is surprising how a solution or new idea will pop up during a quick break after hours of trying to find one at work.

Creativity is important in every business; it is creativity that will find you new ways to market yourself, to carry out procedures and new directions for your business. Donít leave creativity to the artists and craftspeople, all business people need it.

Role model

Do you want your daughter to grow up and wear herself out without enjoying life? Do you want your son to expect such things of his wife?

Now is the time to teach them how women can look after themselves without being selfish or neglecting their family. Your children will watch you and absorb your behaviour and attitudes as appropriate for Mothers, so make it something you want them to copy.

Next time you think of staying up to midnight to do the ironing and make school lunches, think about alternative ways of doing things. Maybe you can get the other family members to help more at home or change your priorities; is it more important you get time out or have the house spotless all the time?


If you work around the house, with the children and in your business all the time, you are going to get emotionally and physically worn out. This is likely to lead to you feeling unwell and catching more colds and illnesses.

Then what? You either have to struggle on feeling worse or the family and business live without you for a few days.

By taking breaks and getting help where possible, you will keep healthy and happy. Regular breaks can keep you out of a sick bed, which is good for everyone.


Have you ever been stuck talking to someone with only one topic of conversation? Boring and tiring isnít it?

If you spend all your time working and rushing around for the kids, you risk becoming just as boring to other people, including clients. Conversations are more lively and interesting if you have read a book, seen a movie, been to a new place and so on. Even a walk around the block will give you something to talk about it, although it may just be the weather!


It is very hard to give and give to others and not become resentful if you donít have your own enjoyments and releases.

On a purely business level, if you work all the time and have no fun, you may not be so cheery with customers and miss out on building good will with them. BY giving yourself time to relax, you maintain a happier state of mind and will attract more word of mouth advertising.


Tash Hughes is a Mum of two in Melbourne. She is also a writer and owner of Word Constructions. Tash is available to write articles and profiles for any business, as well as doing other business documentation projects. You can see her site and services at www.wordconstructions.com






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