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Maintaining A Balance

Author: Larry Chester

Maintaining a Balance 

At this time of year, business owners look back on what they did last year and make plans for more success – which is always defined in business terms.  How do we increase sales, and how do we increase profitability?   

Rabbi Harold Kushner said. “Nobody on their deathbed has ever said ‘I wish I had spent more time at the office.’”  The past two years have been full of discussions about work/life balance.  With my 74th birthday around the corner, I realize more than ever that life is tenuous.  Watching my grandchildren grow up is as fulfilling as watching my children grow up so many years ago.   

But you need to make time to be with them, to share in their joys and difficulties.  Here are 5 quick things you can do to start your journey. 

  1. Get up early – There are many things that need to get done during the day, and time waits for no one.  Getting started early allows you to be more efficient and get things done before the day gets filled with calls and emails. 
  2. End your workday before dinner – Each one of us is a Jekyll and Hyde.  We are the businessperson and the family person.  Change your persona along with your clothes at the end of the day and join the family. 
  3. Be in the moment – Concentrate as much on family issues in the evening as you do with business during the day.  Look your family members straight in the eye and listen to their every word.  When your children want to talk, give them your full attention.  They certainly will notice the difference. 
  4. Welcome impromptu changes – Once, my grandson called me in the morning and said, “Zayde (grandfather in Yiddish), my school said we could bring our favorite grandparent to lunch today, can you make it?”  The answer was YES.  I rescheduled a lunch meeting, and a late morning appointment.  Nobody complained and I went to lunch.  We both still remember it.   
  5. Protect your weekend  This is the time when nobody else in your household is working.  The kids are home from school.  Take the opportunity to make these family days.  You can always find more work to do.  Become more connected by doing something together.   

Put as much energy into being part of your family as you do running your business.  You’ll find it less stressful, and the reaction from everyone around you will be rewarding.  Start the new year on a new footing.  Do that, and you’ll find that being Mr. Hyde is just as much fun as being Dr. Jekyll.  And your family will have more fun as well.   

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