During my years in business, between coaching and listening to colleagues and friends, one of the questions that routinely pops up is how to manage time between business and family. I was actually asked this question on this blog post recently and I figured I’d elaborate on it.
There’s 24 hours in a day; I understand that sometimes it’s hard to manage business and family time, especially if you’re still holding down a 9-5. I’ve had moments where I did nothing but work, either in a job or in building a business, and I would sustain a high energy and a high pressure period. Things would get accomplished, but it was at the expense of burning out. Then, when I burned out, it was like taking 2 steps forward and 4 steps back.
I’ve recently just started understanding the value of personal time to recuperate and recharge. But, back to the topic, how do we find enough time in the day for family and business alike?
Here are some of the things I have implemented in order to help me balance out personal time with business time.
I’ve written about certain time management systems I use here and there to help me accomplish certain projects. Blocking out time helps me intensely focus on the task at hand without distraction. This way, I’m not anxious and stressing when I do spend some time with family because I would have taken care of what needed to be taken care of.
If there’s an event I can’t miss and I know I have a project that needs to get finished, what I like to do is work double the time. This gives me a sense of accomplishment as well as be able to take on other responsibilities aside from business.
Quality Time vs. Quantity Time
Just as I schedule time blocks for business, I also like to schedule time blocks for personal time and familial obligations. By its very nature, being an entrepreneur means there really isn’t a routine schedule, so when I do miss family events, I make up for lost time. What I have realized is that the quality time trumps quantity time. It doesn’t matter much the amount of time I spend with my family if I’m not “present” and I make it a point to be all there when I do get to be with them.
Another thing I would suggest is to get your family involved. Be transparent to those closest to you about your business aspirations. Share your goals and dreams with them so they, too, have a better appreciation of your purpose and mission. This will help them have a better understanding as to why you’re not physically present all the time.
Assign Tasks To Other People
I have a hard time delegating responsibilities to other people, but I’m working on it. For the longest time, I’ve subscribed to the notion that if we want it done right, we gotta do it ourselves. As has been said before, if you’re the smartest person in the room, then you’re in the wrong room. I’ve been working on doing work that align with my strengths and entrusting the ones I’m mediocre in at best to others who are better at it than I am. This has helped me free up some time for things that matter and things that I can have the most impact on.
Last, but not least, lose sleep. I’m not advocating sleeping less than what you need. Health comes first, but I don’t think there’s anything wrong with sleeping less when you absolutely must (i.e. when you have to put in more work than usual so you won’t miss your niece’s graduation).
And, just for laughs:
That’s that! Feel free to share your suggestions in the comments below. If you like this post, please subscribe, share, comment, or like!