Work-Life Balance Is a Myth

You’ll find common elements in the most-read stories on any business site or entrepreneurship site: business ideas, growth strategies, and, undoubtedly – strategies for working with your family as an entrepreneur. This is not a condescending statement. We have all heard these business advice staples: “30 low capital business ideas,” “9 ways to grow a business,” and “6 reasons why work/life balance is important.” There is an excellent reason these themes recur so frequently. These themes are arguably the three vital elements to entrepreneurial success:

  • You must find a solid starting point for your company.
  • It would help if you planned how to grow your business.
  • You should be able to manage your business with no distractions.

Potential entrepreneurs and entrepreneurs cannot help but focus on the first theme: creating sound business ideas and developing growth strategies. These areas are critical to their success. Although I can understand the desire for work/life balance, I fear that any time spent on this goal is wasted. From personal experience, I have found that work-life balance is a myth for entrepreneurs.

Is it possible to have both a job and a family while running a business? The concept is feasible. We must be open to the possibility of many theoretical options. You can have a good idea, and it will be able to make your life easier. As entrepreneurs, we are always looking for these ideas. This forces us to reject ideas with a slight pull or draw. The perfect business idea exists somewhere. However, I’ve never seen one. It’s been my experience that friends, coworkers, and colleagues have developed highly sophisticated products that received customer approval. Each case was a testament to the entrepreneurial focus and obsession. It’s not that entrepreneurs can achieve a work/life balance. In my experience, it is nearly a requirement to be successful if you work obsessively.

My theory on work-life balance relies on three elements. These are my personal entrepreneurial experience, those of other entrepreneurs, and conjecture. Based on personal experience and observations from other entrepreneurs, I will keep it short: It simply has not been possible for me or any other entrepreneurs that I know. Let’s talk about the whole entrepreneurial population.

First, we need to clearly distinguish between what I call working hours and what I refer to as obsessive. This will help us understand the stress that running a business puts on entrepreneurs. Based on my experience and that of others, this is where conjecture comes in: Considering the distinction between working hours or obsessive hours, I believe most successful entrepreneurs work significantly less than most people. I’d guess that most entrepreneurs don’t count their hours. They are not paid per hour at the minimum. But more likely, they are so invested in what their business does that they don’t mind “punching the time clock.”

It would be best if you also differentiated how much work you do at the office and how much you take home. It might be possible to graph the hours worked in the office for entrepreneurs and other workers. You’ll see that they are pretty similar. Entrepreneurs may not work harder. But, entrepreneurs aren’t necessarily spending more time at work. If you create the same graph, you will see a significant difference in how entrepreneurs think about work. This means that entrepreneurs are not physically present at work all the time but never leave work. They are responsible in all aspects of the business, from customer acquisition to risk management. Because of this, they must always think about the company from one angle. They must. They will pay the ultimate price.

To see the flaw in a work/life balance, you must consider how successful entrepreneurs see themselves and their businesses. It is possible to dissect the phrase “work/life balance,” and you will see two assumptions. First, work and life are distinct entities. Second, the non-work elements of your life (“life”) are equally as essential, if not greater, than the work elements. If you believe these two things, you may not be suited for entrepreneurship. The true entrepreneur is their work. There is no line between life & work because the entrepreneur doesn’t see the business as an entity separate from itself. If you can’t optimize your business, you won’t be successful.

I don’t judge or disseminate those who can separate their work from their personal life. In many ways, it leads to a happier, more content life. This article is for entrepreneurs who feel inspired by entrepreneurship and want to make their idea or product known to the rest of the world.

- Advertisement -
Avatar photo
Samatha Vale
Samatha a senior writer for HC's entertainment team. She is an entreprenuer, mother and an excellent writer. She's also an avid reader, music enthusiast and all around inquisitive person - which is just a nice way of saying she's nosy.

Latest articles

Related articles