There has been a great deal of focus on creating work/life balance for entrepreneurs — more so for female entrepreneurs — over the past several years. The quest for this Holy Grail often leaves its seekers unsatisfied. The truth is, you’ll never permanently achieve this balance. Trying to do so may cause even more stress than the actual imbalance you’ve been experiencing.
Here’s why you should set aside your search for perfection and settle for “good enough.”
Your Ideals Will Never Be Achieved
When you think of work/life balance, what do you picture? Maybe getting up extra early and working on your business, then taking the kids to school, having a coffee with your best friend, working some more, then taking your kids to soccer practice after school with energy to spare.
While this may happen on some days, on others, you’ll be hard on yourself if you lack the energy to do all of this well. Every day is different, given your workload, the amount of stress it brings, and what’s going on with your family. So aiming for an ideal is futile and not worth the energy it takes to envision it.
Looking at Others Creates a False Sense of Reality
Maybe you know another entrepreneur who really seems to have it together. She runs her business flawlessly and has time for weekly manicures. This isn’t your reality, and actually, you don’t even know the whole story with her. Maybe she’s stressed because she doesn’t have time to keep her home clean, or bickers with her spouse about her working too hard in her business.
The idea of keeping up with Jones Incorporated only makes you feel that you fall short, when in reality, your situation is unique to you, and can’t be compared to that of others.
So What’s the Solution?
Stop trying to live up to your own lofty expectations. Take it one day at a time. If, on Friday, you finish work early, surprise your kids by coming to their piano lesson after school. Carve out time to take your spouse out for an indulgent lunch. And cut yourself some slack if you end up working one weekend to complete a project. Work/life balance, in reality, is a constant game. If you see it as such, you’ll realize you don’t need to work so hard to achieve perfection. What is within the realm of possibility is good enough for right now.