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4 work-life balance ideas for dadpreneurs

June 12, 2014

A growing number of dads will continue to juggle a work life balance with their children going back to school this September. Here are some work life balance tips that can help dads who are small business owners better manage their commitments at home and the office.

Striking a work life balance isn’t just a concern of female business owners any more.  Many entrepreneurs are hands-on fathers, committed to spending time with their families. While the last few years have seen a marked increase in the acceptance of dad-preneurs, many people still expect working fathers to put work above else. Regardless of societal opinions, owning and running a small business demands an incredible amount of time – whether there are children at home or not.

As dad-preneurs send their children back to school, we’d like to offer four tips for making the work-life balancing act a bit easier.

1) Protect your time with family

When you’re juggling multiple priorities it’s easy for non-scheduled things to happen.  The important moments can easily get lost as the days rush by.  Be sure to schedule family time the same as you do business meetings and don’t feel guilty for taking the time.  As your business grows, create a company culture that values family.

2) Prioritize your to-do list

You can’t do it all.  If BC (before children) you spent 80 hours a week at work and 20 on your hobby, that only leaves 68 hours – without accounting for sleep!  As a working parent you need to list what you want to do and work on every week, including helping out your children with homework. Prioritize that list and divide your time starting with priority one and working your way down the list – and don’t forget time to sleep!  If you run out of time before getting to the bottom of your list, you’ll have to re-prioritize.

3) Remember, it’s okay to say “no”

Re-prioritizing leads us to tip number three: Just say no.  Saying no can make you feel bad and you may worry that others will think you’re uncharitable, but there’s no way to say yes to everything.  Trying to please everyone leads to no one being happy, and least of all, yourself. Learn how to say no in positive and encouraging ways and include some time for helping friends, family and organizations that are important to you in your weekly calendar.

4) Be mindful of personal health and the health of your business

Without health, the rest of life can be pretty untenable. This is for both your personal health and the health of your business.  With a short supply of free time it’s hard for fathers with small businesses to get to the gym or run a few miles, but there are smaller healthy steps you can take to up your daily fitness routine.  When it comes to the health of your business, a third-party claim against you for negligence – whether founded in fact or baseless – can cripple operations. Small business liability insurance can mean the difference between successfully weathering such a storm or succumbing to it, so ensure your business is properly covered.

One last tip: Don’t try to be a superhero. No one can do everything, but you can strive to the best version of yourself that you know is possible.

Share with us! What do you find to be the most important characteristics of an entrepreneur and a dad that allows you to have a proper work life balance?