How to Balance Entrepreneurship and Being a Parent
Running a business requires a lot of time, effort, and persistence. With that being said, so does being a parent. Establishing a successful business that supports your family may be a goal of yours, but it can also take you away from your family which can impact your parenting efforts.
Finding a healthy balance between actively running your business and being an attentive and involved parent can be a challenge, but there are plenty of hours in a day to master both important areas of your life. Here are a few tips to take into consideration.
Work Around Your Child’s Schedule
Working around your child’s schedule is one of the best ways to knock out tasks you need to complete uninterrupted while your kids are busy as well. Depending on how old your kids are, their needs may vary. A toddler will probably need more attention and care than a school-aged child.
I know some parents who wake up early to work before their kids wake up, or put their kids to bed early so they can knock out some work at night. Since my son in grade school, I try to complete the bulk of my work (if not all of it) while he is in school so I can give him my undivided attention when he gets home.
Disconnect During Family Time
There’s no experience that can compare to bonding with your kids. However, family time becomes less enjoyable when you or your spouse are glued to your work while everyone is trying to spend quality time together.
I know it can be tempting to check and respond to just one more email when you’re watching a family movie or doing something with your kids, but trust me when I say that they’ll notice how connected you are to your devices instead of being focused on them.
Even small children pick up on everything. When my son has basketball practice, I’ve felt tempted to bring my laptop and catch up on work while he practices but sometimes I’ve noticed he looks over at me to see if I’m watching him especially when he makes a shot.
That made me realize that I didn’t want him to remember me as the mom who was always attached to her laptop and phone when he was growing up so I work very efficiently during the time I have so I can disconnect completely when the time comes.
Consider Outsourcing Some Tasks
If your work responsibilities are tearing you away from spending precious time with your kids, consider outsourcing some tasks to lighten your workload. Sometimes it’s worth it to buy back your time so you can do other things.
You can even outsource other things in your life or plan ahead to make more time to be involved with what your kids are doing. I split a lot of household tasks with my husband so that burden isn’t just on one person and I often cook meals in bulk so I’m not stuck cooking a huge dinner each night when I could be taking my son somewhere or teaching him something.
Summary: Optimize Your Time and Resources
One thing that parenthood and entrepreneurship have in common is that no two days are ever the same. While it’s important to create a schedule you can stick to, unexpected things are bound to happen.
The key is to optimize your time and accept help when you need it. Outsource time-consuming tasks and even start small so you don’t go over budget. Disconnect when it’s most important, and power through your work when it’s time to give it 100%.