Here I am, typing away at my keyboard. What am I doing? I’m adding comments to one of the many reports that I receive every day. It’s midnight again. This is the 12th night in a row where I’m still working at his ungodly hour. Sure, being the Co-founder is amazing. The past few years feel like a dream. We’re on our way to join India’s club of unicorns soon. I just bought a brand new luxury car and in a few months, my family and I will be moving into our dream lakeside home.
Home *sigh*. I miss spending time with my wife. I haven’t even seen my daughter in the past 12 days. It seems like work is only getting busier. More time away from home seems guaranteed. Sure, the money and power will be great. But is it going to be worth it? I just can’t help but think.
I wish there were more hours in a day.
Sounds familiar? Unfortunately, most of us are limited by our physical and mental capabilities and the fact that we’re dealt with a finite number of hours to do the things we want to do. So many things like your relationships and recreation just take a back seat.
Here’re four things that most entrepreneurs feel like they never have enough time for:
The word “entrepreneur” has become synonymous with lack of sleep. It is generally recommended that to remain healthy and alert, one must get at least seven-eight hours of continuous sleep. The entrepreneurs among you all must be thinking “Yeah, right like I have that much time to waste sleeping” or “If only it were possible.” There’s just always a business meeting or a presentation or a campaign or something, which takes precedence over sleep.
2. Fitness — Both Mental and Physical
When was the last time you were able to take the time out to hit the gym? “I have that investor meeting tomorrow to prepare for. But I’ll definitely go for a workout tomorrow.” Cut to the next day: “Oh that meeting was so exhausting. I’ll go to the gym tomorrow” ....and so on and so forth. There’s just never enough time or energy to concentrate on personal physical wellbeing.
There’s also never any time to just take a break and de-stress. Your business trips will always take precedence over that long overdue and much-needed vacation. Your brain never even gets the chance to cool down after all the intense mental gears’ churning that is involved in one’s life as an entrepreneur.
3. Family and Friends
This is a tough one. Somehow, the most important meetings will come at the time of your child’s annual day. The most important presentations will happen at the time you were supposed to have a romantic candle lit dinner with your wife. The most urgent meetings will happen at the time of your best friend’s 30th birthday bash. You end up speaking to your colleagues and subordinates more than your friends and family.
This is a shocking one, especially for a non-entrepreneur. You seem to be working all the time. How’s it possible that you have no time for it? Well, the point is that in an entrepreneur’s life, there’s never enough time for work. With increased responsibilities, leadership roles often demand a lot of personal training. You’re just never really not working, and hence the complaint that a 24-hour day is too short.
Is it Worth It?
I think one can safely say that nothing of significant value comes without some kind of sacrifice. If you want to be a musician, you’ve got to put in many hours of practice before you’re ready. Sportspeople train for most of their youth, trying to achieve and sustain their peak condition to be able to perform. The same applies to being an entrepreneur. It requires sacrifice.
However, if it means compromising your wellbeing, then it’s worth stepping back and putting your professional pursuit in perspective. Going to your child’s annual day function might be more important than that one meeting. Making sure you’re back home to spend quality time with family might be more important than finishing one more task. Two hours a day in the morning dedicated to a fitter you or to a non-professional activity as opposed to early morning calls might be what you need to be more emotionally stable.
If your compromises are making you unhappy, then it will be detrimental to your profession too. The very thing you’re compromising for will be put into jeopardy.
So, find out what’s important for you, and make sure you prioritize that, along with your professional aspirations. After all, no amount of wealth or power is worth a depressed mind.