Running your own business can be an all-consuming occupation. You spend so much time getting your firm on its feet that it sometimes feels like everything else has to take a back seat, including your family and friends.

It’s obviously important that you throw yourself into your business to get it established, but it’s just as necessary to take time out from it as well. If you’re thinking about the business 24/7 then you’ll simply burn yourself out. People can end up back in paid jobs within a couple of years if they can’t handle the pressure of being a business owner. That’s why you need to carve out some social time every day, to put aside work for a couple of hours and to recharge your batteries.

Many small business owners try to create and stick to a regular working routine, so they have time to read their kids a bedtime story or sit down to dinner with their partner. Don’t underestimate how refreshing it can be to return to normal life, even if it’s only for a little while.

Taking regular exercise can help to keep you fit as well as enabling you to work off some of the stresses and strains from your working day, so you’re not a ball of tension when you come home from work.

Others set themselves challenges away from the office, such as learning a new language, a musical instrument or doing voluntary work, to take their minds off their businesses and to get a sense of accomplishment that has nothing to do with hitting a big deadline or winning a pitch.

You may not want to measure the success of your business only in terms of how much money it’s making. One of the primary reasons many people set up their own firms is the freedom it gives them to take control of their own lives. And, many start-up owners report feeling much more confident and independent since going out on their own, as they’ve learnt more about themselves and made new friends. So it’s important to use that newfound sense of wellbeing in your social life as well as in your working life too.