It’s the beginning of July, which means summer is in full swing. Remember when you were a kid: Hours spent hanging out at a friend’s house. Swimming all day long. Riding bike for hours on end. Those were the good ole days.
But now you’re an adult with a business to run. For many entrepreneurs, summer presents an extra challenge because your kids are home from school. How do you balance being an entrepreneur during the summer months with parenting?
Let’s dive into a few possibilities that might help you balance these two important roles.
- Set Boundaries: This one is particularly important if you work from home. Your kids need to know that there are certain times that you need to be left alone to work. Talk about this with the whole family and determine what this looks like for you. At my house, this means that my girls don’t come into my office and generally speaking, they have to play downstairs and away from my office so they aren’t too loud. This requires cooperation and understanding from everyone in our household.
- Schedule Fun Activities: Perhaps it’s coordinating with friends so your kids can play at their house, signing your kids up for camp, or something as simple as building an obstacle course in your backyard. Your kids need things to do, and having an activity or two planned can help keep them entertained so you can work.
- Create a Summer Bucket List: As a family, identify a few fun activities that you want to do during the summer. Put them on the calendar and make sure they happen! Playing at the park, bike rides, hiking, a trip to the beach, or a weekend away camping are all good ideas. If you plan to be away from work, make sure your employees are capable of taking care of things while you are gone and trust them while you are away.
- Adjust your schedule: If you have some flexibility in your job, summer is a great time to get up early or stay up late and get some work done while your kids are still sleeping. This allows you to have more time while they are awake to do things with them. It might also be possible to involve your kids in your work a bit more than during the school year. Summer might be a great time for your kids to learn a bit more about what you do and what running a business looks like.
- Allow yourself some Grace: Things might not go exactly as planned. Your kids might be louder than you would like or you find it distracting to hear them yelling at one another in the background. Be honest about how you’re feeling and give yourself and your kids some grace. It can be hard on everyone, kids included, when the regular structure and routine of the school year are missing.
So this summer, embrace the different schedule. Take some time to share with your kids what you do. Take a short break to play 5 minutes of basketball with your son or daughter. Each lunch with your family. Enjoy the sounds of laughter when your kids are playing together.
Remember, being an entrepreneur is hard work. Being an entrepreneur and a parent is even harder. But you can do it. And you can do it well. Summer doesn’t last forever!