I have been spending some time looking over old blog posts recently, and I decided that my recent writing has been pretty
shitty crappy downright bad. I am not sure what is going on other than I am primarily preoccupied most of the time with this little detail or that. My old posts generated a ton of conversation. My recent ones: not so much. I don’t blame you. Recently, my writing has been bad.
(Other than the post in which you can win a 2 night spring break getaway, I should say. That post is pretty awesome…simply due to the giveaway and the little window into my R&R time with my fabulous kids.)
Well, as of today, I say NO to bad writing. You see when I am preoccupied, I end up writing to just write, and who wants to read that? Certainly not me.
Hello sincere writing. I am back to writing for real…
Part of my mission here is to always show the good, the bad, and the ugly of mommying and building a business. My life is a constant push/pull of where being a mom intersects with being an entrepreneur. Sometimes the light flashes green for the traffic coming from the entrepreneur direction, and other times it is bright RED going that way.
These traffic lights are not really real, but rather a figment of my imagination. They are my version of the angel and devil sitting on either one of my shoulders. The lights are a constant reflection of my emotions, my guilt, and my determination.
We already know that starting a business requires determination, discipline, and tenacity. Growing a family requires much of the same, and unfortunately, at any given point in time, one facet is receiving more than the other. I used to think there was balance, but there is not. There is fluctuation, timing, and decision-making, but definitely not balance.
Just like some traffic logistics expert studies an intersection and determines at what times the lights need to be shorter or longer in one direction and what times they do not, a mom in business has to evaluate when to focus her determination in particular directions.
Setting hours, unplugging, and moving our office to a quiet place are all ways that we begin to set physical boundaries. It is the mental boundaries that are most challenging to set. Where does one put the constant stream of pipeline ideas when one is listening to a book report? Can a person say no to a business invitation because there is a school event and not be haunted by deep regret? Or vice versa, attend the business event without obsessing over the school event?
I do not claim to be able to do any of the above. I pick and I choose. I make cost/benefit analyses of everything I do. I weigh, I lament, I choose. I try not to keep score, but somewhere deep inside, I try to give each side – business and family – equal turns.
I am off to a conference soon in which I will miss a whole weekend (Thursday – Sunday!!) of basketball games and impromptu drum performances. The guilt is riding me like a bad pair of granny panties. I would be lying if I said it were not.
The only cure at the moment is to give up my event tonight so I do not miss the drum lesson, basketball game, and spaghetti and meatball night. The score feels even to me then. I do not even pretend to know what is right or wrong, just what allows me to lay my head on my pillow at night.
You may know that I love the show Shark Tank. As an Inventor, I am able to take notes on what I want to do and what I definitely do not want to do from watching. I hold a special spot in my heart for Mark Cuban, the shark from Pittsburgh. I like all the sharks, but come on – Cuban is from my hometown!
Anyway, on last week’s episode, Cuban asked a mom inventor on the show about what decision would she make between her kid’s birthday and a huge business meeting. Of course, she took the meeting, claiming her kids and husband had her back all the way. I would take the meeting, too, but unfortunately, the granny panties would be cutting my circulation the whole time. Period. End of Story.
I know this because as moms and women in business, we face the wedgie of guilt every day. (Maybe that is why someone invented the thong?)