Many men dream of owning their own business and working from home. There are a growing number who have not only achieved this but at the same time juggle another very prized achievement: Fatherhood. From creating presentations and calling clientele to family outings and helping with homework, these fathers are constantly changing hats – and are happy to do so. What keeps them successful in their ventures? How can one balance fatherhood and entrepreneurship?
Here are 6 things I’ve learned about making it all work:
- First and foremost, make quality time for your family. Just as you would balance your monthly work schedule, take the time to create a calendar for you and your family. Include important dates or appointments you don’t want to forget. Try to block out time weekly where you plan to spend certain hours with just you and your children. Quality time means no phone in your hand or laptop in view. Be present and enjoy it!
- Allow for flexibility. The truth is we are imperfect and we need to allow room and be ready to accept the events that alter what we had planned to do. Little Johnny’s unexpected jump off the couch and your wait in the hospital is never planned. So expect the unexpected and work around your growing family.
- Keep your workspace separate from your home space. There are two bonuses to creating a space that you and everyone in your household knows is your office. First, it helps you leave your work where it belongs when you are done for the day allowing you to enjoy your home. Second, it teaches your children how to recognize when daddy is working and therefore “unavailable” at the moment.
- Take the time to network with other entrepreneurs. Networking with other business professionals is not only great for business, it can also be great for your family life. Who knows, you may end up meeting fellow business professionals who are fathers that you can connect with and share ideas and resources. Keep your ears open for local networking events (like those we host at Laptop Lounge) and have in mind who you would like meet to add to your business or make your life a little easier.
- Take time for yourself. Creating calendars, assuring your schedule is flexible, having a dedicated workspace in your home (or a coworking space like Laptop Lounge out of it), and networking with other professionals will bring a certain balance to your life. However, never underestimate the value of taking a little time to reboot! Many find it helpful to actually calendar their “my time” on the family calendar. Either way, little moments that refresh your soul will do wonders with how you face challenges at work or family dilemmas that are sure to come up.
- Develop a routine. Creating the “perfect” routine for you and your family can take some time and practice. However, take each week that passes as an opportunity to review how things have turned out and where you can make adjustments. As you continue to stick to your routine it will encourage your children to follow suit and bring about a happy balance in your life.
Good luck and Happy Father’s Day!