Running a business is hard work; there is a lot of responsibility and pressure on you to make things work. There are times when you might even wonder why you are not just working the 9-5 for someone else as your own venture become all consuming. When you then add a relationship into the mix you can really feel like you are being pulled in all directions, so how do you have a happy relationship and prevent your business being the driving force for your whole life?
Keep Your Partner in the Loop
It helps to understand what someone else is going through and if you know that you are going to be hitting a busy patch and will be less accessible, it makes sense to talk about that in advance. They don’t need to know the whole detail as that potentially is just as damaging but making them aware that you are going to be tied up for a while because of a project helps people stay chilled about not seeing you so much as they understand why you are absent.
Set Aside Time for Each Other
Often we fall into the trap of working all day, sorting kids all evening and by the time we have cooked and fed everyone, got the little ones into bed, all we have left is silence as the television takes over the evening. While it is essential to have some ‘goldfish brain’ time where you do not have to focus on anything or think about work, it is also important to make time to talk to each other. Note though that this is not the time you should be talking about work. Whether you eat your meal after the children are in bed that night or turn the tv off and sit with a glass of wine, it is important just to have some time together sharing company and remembering why you are together. If there is time to build in a shared activity at the weekend when grandparents can babysit maybe you can grab a game of tennis, watch a film or take a walk in the countryside. It is important to remember what attracted you to each other in the first place and rekindle the fun from the early days.
Set Boundaries at Work
It is likely that all small business owners have fallen into the trap of working evenings and weekends, not booking holidays and focusing solely on the business. Of course, it is vital to build a level of work that supports you, but if it becomes all-consuming, then life tends to slide. Where possible you need to commit to having set hours where you deal with the business, even the owner of the company needs time off. The beauty of being the boss is, of course, the ability to juggle work and home, attend a school play, go on a playdate with other children and their parents, but these should be changes to the norm, and as a rule, you should have set hours unless something crops up.
We all want our business to succeed. It is often the pursuit upon which we place all of our hopes, expectations, and dreams. Unfortunately, this need to push on and make our businesses reality can often be damaging to our relationships. Being a parent entrepreneur can really affect you here, as you’re trying to do so much that you run the risk of something going wrong. There are warning signs that your business is taking over the relationship, and we’re going to try and help you spot them.
You Don’t Spend Time With Your Partner Because Of Work
One of the first and biggest warning signs that something is wrong with your relationship is when you find yourself working when you should be spending time with them. We get that you want to make a successful business, and that’s fine, but you have to have a balance. If you’ve not got time for your partner because of work, then it’s a sure fire sign that your business is causing problems.
Feelings Of Isolation
Do you ever feel alone? Do you ever feel like you’re in this without any support and that you’re spending your nights and days miserable, isolated and without comfort? That’s a sign that something has gone very wrong. You shouldn’t ever feel like you’re alone when you have a partner and a family, but that’s often what it does feel like. Obviously, this can be very troubling for you to try and deal with, but it’s definitely a warning sign. Your partner should be a source of comfort and strength, not a stranger to you.
CLICK TO TWEET I think for any relationship to be successful, there needs to be loving communication, appreciation, and understanding. Miranda Kerr
Your Work Comes Up In Arguments
Arguments with a partner are never a good thing. However, it’s when your business start to come up in arguments that something is really wrong. When this happens, you absolutely have to recognise a warning sign for what it is. If your partner is angry at you for spending too much time working, and that the business is part of their upset, you need to take a step back. A healthy work-life balance is absolutely crucial for anyone who’s trying to successfully raise business and a family, so one can not come at the expense of the other.
Overall, these are three warning signs that there’s something wrong with your business, in regards to how it’s affecting your relationship. Your relationship with a partner is such an important thing, and it should never be jeopardised by work. If you ever start to feel that it is, it’s time to consider a change. Remember that the most important component of any successful business is your happiness. You can’t make something successful without taking care of yourself as well. It’s so important to do this because you can not hope to succeed when you face challenges at home. These warning signs are easy to spot, and you should look for them constantly because they can really be a problem.
The Parents in Biz Hub is a supportive community of entrepreneurial parents. It’s an inclusive network where you can share ideas, seek advice, and use your experience and expertise to help others. Join here.
Starting your own business can be tricky. However, if you add kids into the mix, then you may find yourself faced with a seemingly impossible task. We are here to show you that just because you are dedicated to your family, it doesn’t mean that you have to give up your dreams of your own business.
In fact, if you are careful with what you do and the approaches that you take, you can have a successful business—all without sacrificing time with your precious family.
Know your hours
Just like normal employment, if you are thinking about setting up your business, you need to have set hours that you can work in mind. Thankfully, one of the biggest bonuses to working for yourself is that your hours can suit your life. Not the other way around. However, you will still need to devise a schedule that works for both.
It is a good idea to know when childcare is a possibility, after all, there are going to be days when not having the kids around will help you to focus your efforts.
Don’t forget some me time
One of the biggest mistakes that parents can make when setting up their own business is splitting their time equally between their work and their kids. What time do you have left for yourself? Try to take off at least one day a week, use that time to step away from your work and spend time with your family. Even better, plan in the odd bit of time for a nice long bath, reading a good book or perhaps just watching a movie. Your body and mind will thank you for it.
Get some help with the housework
It isn’t viable for everyone, but if you can afford to, spend out on hiring a cleaner. This means that your time can be focused away from the daily household chores. Not only is it nice to work in a cleaner environment, but if you have time with the children planned in, you won’t be tempted to spend your precious time cleaning up the home.
Keep to your plans
When running your own business and looking after your family, it can sometimes be easy to allow the lines between the two to blur. It is important to try and keep these lines as clear as possible. If you plan to work, then make sure you are focused on working. If this means that the kids are not around, then this is something that you will need to arrange.
If you plan to spend some family time focused on the kids, put the laptop or mobile phone away and concentrate on them. They will know if you start to wander towards work, even if you think you are covertly looking at your phone.
Never feel guilty
One of the biggest problems with being a working parent is the guilt that comes with it. This can be even worse if you are setting up your own business. Try to ignore these feelings of guilt, whilst you may not be spending as much time with your kids that you can, you are making sure that you can provide for them. Not only this, but you are showing them that anyone can be a success if they put their mind to it, and that is a very important life lesson to learn.