Intro by Skip Cohen
This post from Sarah Petty’s archives is perfect for this time of year, especially since so many of you have children and grandchildren who are going to be out of school for the summer. But whatever time of year it is, it takes a lot of work to establish your priorities.
All of us wear multiple hats as business owners, spouses, parents, children, and friends. Plus, under each of these are more “sub-hats,” leaving us with days where we can get lost entirely in remembering our priority to merely have the life we envisioned when we started out in business.
As Spring seasonality starts to ramp up, Sarah’s last point is perfect…“flexibility is a benefit of small business ownership.” You’re in business because you love the craft and it’s a way to earn a living to enjoy your life – don’t let it become your life!
Yesterday, I took time away from my photography business to attend a fourth of July party, where I ran into my kids’ pediatrician. I thought I knew a lot of people but can you imagine being a physician, having a day off and spending it will all of your patients?
Of course, to be ornery, I had to share with her that my kids ONLY get sick either on Sundays or on her day off. It is like my kids can sense when she might take a day off and they become germ magnets. After I razzed her, I told her how proud I was of her for making her family a priority. She works a part-time schedule in the summer so she can spend time at the pool with her kids – as she said once “while her kids still want her to.” What are the priorities in your photography business?
Why is it that as a society, we feel that to be successful, we must work grueling hours at our family’s expense? I am sure our doc works hard every day, takes paperwork home and deals with lots of extra stress of running a practice – but she made the decision that in the summer, her kids are her priority.
Next time you think about missing an event at your kids’ school or missing some quality time with your family, remember that flexibility is a benefit of small business ownership.