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Balancing Business and Family Life

If you’re trying to juggle your own business and family responsibilities as well, you know the meaning of having lots of balls in the air. There’s everything from business tasks to chaperoning, emails to grocery shopping, and running your company to wiping runny noses. Sometimes, though, business demands start to take over, and it can seem a bit overwhelming. But when that happens, it can help to take a moment and step back, gain some perspective, and approach the situation with a renewed outlook. Below are some tips you can implement to strike that coveted work-life balance.

Back to the Start

Juggling ResponsibilitiesAt times, being caught up in the “to do” list can make you forget why you started this business in the first place. If you started a home business so you could spend more time with your family, but your family time has been relegated to two hours before bedtime, maybe it’s time to reconsider your business plan. Parenting and family experts, always stress that while business is important, your kids and family are far more important, and should always come first. Here are some adjustments to make that will help you be productive in your business, but remain active with your family, as well.

Not to Be Crossed

Having boundaries, both physical and otherwise, can really help you stay productive and focused while you’re “at work”, and can also help you devote your attention to your children when you’re not. One type of boundary to consider is having business hours, at least officially. If you answer emails at two o’clock in the morning, you’ll set a precedent that you’re available at that time. Set physical boundaries, as well, and have a space that is solely for your business. That way, family members will respect that when you’re in that space you’re working, but that also means that you put work aside when you venture out to be with them. Playing dress-up while emailing on your cell phone doesn’t count as quality time, and your kids aren’t fooled.

Take Care of Yourself

You likely have a laundry list of things that need to be accomplished during the day, but chances are, you have a very short list of things that are a priority when it comes to you. Take a day off once in awhile for “me time”. Enjoy your favorite cup of coffee, go to the park with the kids, go on a date with your significant other, or just relax. Whatever you do, make sure work isn’t invited. Your health can suffer if you don’t take this time.

The One-Person Show

You are one person, but sometimes you try to pull the equivalent of a business variety act by wearing every hat you can think of. Don’t do this. Instead, know what your limits are, and stick to them.

Work-Life Balance is a Journey

Nobody wakes up one day and says “Aha! I have achieved work-life balance, I’m done.” Balance is not a destination, it’s a journey, and you’ll always be making adjustments to balance out one side of your life or the other. But it is an attainable goal, and you can achieve balance on a daily basis by setting yourself up for success. Remember why you started your business, keep business and family time separate, look after you, and know what you can and can’t do, and you’ll have a better relationship with your kids, your spouse, and yourself. Chances are, you’ll be healthier, too, both physically and emotionally.

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Image courtesy of Victor Habbick / FreeDigitalPhotos.net.