“I am a business owner and it seems I need to choose between time for me or time with my kids. How do I reconcile this and fit in both because they both seem important”
This is one of the most common questions I am asked–how do you choose when everything feels important?
The answer: it’s not easy and you don’t need to worry about getting it perfect–you never will–but you can probably balance things better than they are now.
Start (as you have) by acknowledging that both your needs and your childrens’ needs are important. Not only do you need time for yourself, but by showing your children that you value yourself and your own self-care, you teach them a critical lesson about how to value their own needs and well being.
Don’t get stuck in all-or-nothing thinking. You can’t do it all and you may not have time for 18 holes of golf or a weekend at the spa, but what can you fit in? Don’t dismiss the small stuff. When you determine what’s possible, schedule it. And be sure to ask yourself whether your parenting expectations are realistic and fair. If you are burning the candle at both ends, everyone suffers. Are you being honest with yourself about what you have to give? In the pie chart that is your life, you need a piece too.
Don’t dilute the time you do have. Ten minutes a day with a clear focus and no multitasking can go a long way, whether it’s ten minutes of me-time for you or ten minutes of mindful focus on your children.
Say no and delegate where you can. This applies to your business as well. If you work from home, it may be important to identify when work ends and home life begins.
Be creative. I know parents who run laps around the soccer fields or who have designed creative child care trades in order to attend to their own priorities. Depending on the age of your kids, it might be helpful (and a valuable experience for all) to include them in the strategizing and problem solving around time issues. Have a weekly family meeting where the schedule and the needs of the family (that includes you) are discussed and strategies are formed.
Finally, here are some resources that may help:
The Success Soundtrack: How to Create More Ease, Flow, Me-time AND Success in Just 10 Minutes a Day
How to Put Yourself First: The 7 Day Blast-off
Readers, what are your thoughts? Leave a comment and share any ideas or tips that you have.
Take good care,