Entrepreneurs, especially women, are often faced with the hard dilemma of choosing between investing time in their budding ventures and their families. It is not uncommon for business owners to work from dawn to dusk well after their businesses take off.
Young mothers might find themselves jabbed with rhetoric that it’s either-or. The reality is, creating a successful business is an energy-intensive process. In the early stages, all the responsibilities may rest on the entrepreneur. However, this doesn’t mean it’s impossible to cultivate a healthy family life. Family can be more important to the fruition of the business than most think.
Setting clear expectations is crucial for young families. At the end of the day, your family will most likely be acceptive if you’re pursuing something that you’re truly passionate about. But you have to remain honest about the amount of time it will take.
Learning how to balance business and family can be an incredibly rewarding lesson. It comes down to prioritisation. This means allocating time in our busy schedules for them, even if it means sneaking in a few hours of work late at night.
All relationships require work to maintain. Without prioritisation, crucial relationships in your life may start to wane. As your business and life start to evolve, ensure that you keep your values close to you.
Here are some ways to preserve your passion, keep your business thriving, and maintain the relationships that are the most important in your life.
Keep Your Inbox of Inspiration Open
A unique business idea often begins in the form of inspiration. We’re called to do something because we see that there’s something we can offer that’s better than what currently exists. It might be in the form of a compliment from a friend, or a playful chide from your partner.
Regardless of what stage you are in business, it’s important to always remain inspired. Why? If you’re uninspired and burnt out, you’re likely to stop producing innovative ideas that keep you on top of your game.
On the importance of inspiration, Arsineh Hoonanian, the CEO of Little Artist Party has much to say about the role family plays in her flourishing business. It all began when she put her heart into planning the perfect event for son’s 10th birthday. Upon receiving several compliments from the attendees, came the inspiration to start a company catered around delivering exceptional experiences for kids.
“Even as adults, we have a lot to learn from children,” Arsineh says. I dedicate a big part of my success to learning how to intertwine my personal and work life. My children are my greatest source of inspiration, teaching me how to understand a child’s mind and implement it into my work.”
Despite her busy schedule, Arsineh acknowledges the importance of taking time off to spend with her family. It is through these moments she is reminded of what she’s called to do every day. And partly how she expanded rapidly from offering one party package to designing over 20 experiences including slime, arts and crafts, and Slime-A-Palooza events. Her clients include Los Angeles household names like the Kardashians, Jessica Simpson, and Lily Ghalichi.
Dedication Can Be Your Greatest Asset
Actions matter more than words. Your dedication to your business and family is expressed in your consistent delivery of quality work and intentionality to spend time with your family.
Often, entrepreneurs face criticism for devoting excessive amounts of time to their business. Here’s the silver lining. Mental dedication leads to the development of great discipline and time management skills. Time is the most precious resource for entrepreneurs. Therefore, being on a tight schedule can force them to become more mindful of dedicating time to their loved ones. A time where they are fully present with them.
“You have to love what you do and be consistent in your hard work, and eventually success will follow,” Arsineh says. “Mentally prepare yourself for early mornings and long nights, and don’t be afraid to wear different hats in the beginning.”
Your approach and passion for business can have a positive return on your personal development. This trait can be transferred to how you nurture your family. The two values we hold dear to ourselves don’t have to be separated. For Arsineh, family will always remain at the pinnacle of her values. Without her primary role as a mother, she would have never become the entrepreneur she is today.
Involve Your Family in the Process
One way you can inspire your family to grow alongside your business is by allowing them to participate. Even if it’s helping out with something small. This can strengthen the bond between you and your family members.
There’s a deep sense of gratitude that comes from your family’s support. Sometimes entrepreneurs may want to separate their work lives from their personal, however, in most cases work will inevitably play a big role in our lives. A better approach is to be inclusive, rather than create distance from your family.
On the importance of family support to her business, Arsineh comments “I still owe a lot of my success to my children, because they inspired me from the beginning. And of course, my husband, who challenged and encouraged me throughout my dreams.”
How we can remain inspired to build out our dreams is by learning how to balance our personal and work life. It’s challenging, but not impossible to maintain strong relationships with our families while building an impeccable business. It comes down to how we prioritise our time by making family time non-negotiable, and never taking for granted how much they contribute to the success in our lives.