You have an important project due, but all you can think about is that fight you had with your significant other. Sound familiar? Relationships are work, but they don’t have to be a source of constant stress. We can, indeed, balance love and business. We all long for success, and we can admit to that, easily, without shame. However, when it comes to admitting our desire for a bae, or baes, we are a little more reluctant, for fear of appearing desperate. But we are social creatures, and, as a species, we are wired to connect with others. And we all know that trouble in our love lives can impact our moods. So, making sure you balance your love life and business life is an integral part of self-care.
This is how to balance love and business.
1. Define what a healthy relationship is to you (and discuss it with your partner)
Everyone has his/her own definition of a healthy relationship. What does it mean to you? Do you and your partner have to call each other every day? Or are text messages enough? How many times a week or month do you have to see each other? Besides determining what type of foundation on which you’d like to build your relationship (which I’ll get into more later), the aforementioned points need to be addressed. Discuss them with your partner to avoid disappointment on either side and to have a better chance at balancing love and business.
2. Be clear about your intentions
What is the end goal of your relationship? Times are changing and not everyone necessarily wants to take a trip down the altar, or sign legal papers. Talk with your partner(s) about what you want and come to a general consensus or part ways. When you’re attempting to tackle huge business goals, your relationship shouldn’t be an enigma you have to solve. It should provide comfort. And yes, there will be ups and downs, as we are human, after all. But, the key to excelling in both love and business is effective communication.
3. Build a solid foundation
Familiar with the four-hour workweek? That is only possible if you have a solid foundation and a proper system set in place (more on that later). Then you can kickback and relax (within reason). Relationships do require constant work, but things are easier when you build them on solid ground. What is this foundation? I’m no relationship expert, but my idea of a healthy relationship is one built on friendship and shared values. You have things in common with your friends. You enjoy their company. Once you have a solid foundation, the other aspects of the relationship become easier. You can then balance love and business much more effectively.
4. Compartmentalize your time
Now that you’ve decided what type of relationship you want, and you’ve communicated and compromised with your partner(s), it’s time to compartmentalize your time. As entrepreneurs, we are prone to working at all hours of the day. Schedule time with your significant other for a phone call, or even watching TV. Just like when you work without distractions, time with your special someone should be equally unhindered. If you want to balance love and business, your significant other needs to know that you value him or her. Imagine how your business would look if you seldom worked on it. Not too profitable.
4. Push each other
You and your significant other are both working on attaining your business goals. That’s great. Just remember that you’re not in competition with one another. Push each other to achieve greatness. Help where you can and when you’re asked. See each other as truly a team. When one person wins, the other wins, too. For your relationship to work, you both should be driven. Both parties don’t have to be an entrepreneur. But you should each have clear goals and a focus beyond the relationship. Be each other’s number one fan. If you don’t believe in your partner, work on that.
5. Talk about money
You and your partner should talk about money. Is one of you dedicating most of your money into your business and you don’t have much for, say, an impromptu trip to Dubai? If one person is constantly saying “no” to suggested activities, resentment and guilt can start to build— on both sides. You need to discuss the type of investment your businesses need and which leisure activities are important to the both of you. Some compromises will have to be made. Consider getting a joint account for said leisure activities, so you can both contribute a set amount every two weeks, or month, for the activities you’ve decided to partake in. Balance love and business by having open conversations about money and avoiding unnecessary fights.
Those are my five tips on how to balance love and business. What are your tips?