So this topic is interesting because I left corporate and ventured into my own business, hoping that I would spend more time with my daughter — but alas, this was my experience which might not necessarily reflect the experiences of other women.
I worked for corporate for over six years and finally decided to launch my own business, Social Vibes Media, a digital marketing agency for small business. Part of the reason for launching the business was to dedicate more time to my daughter who was seven at the time. I had my regular 9-5 job but I always missed report cards, breakfast with mom days, and afternoon activities with my kid. Launching my own business would give me that extra time I needed to spend with my daughter. After all, I would become my own boss so I wouldn’t need to request days off, ask for permission to leave early, or schedule vacation days in advance. Right?
My presumptions were far from the truth.
After launching my business, my eight-hour days became eleven-hour days. My five-day work week transformed into a seven-day workweek. I failed to take vacations and had no time to think about my weekend plans. Yes, my life became my business. I created a schedule that revolved around my business and did not revolve around my daughter. I consumed myself with work and even started to take work home with me. Yes, I became a work-a-holic.
I still struggle with this issue but at least I can blatantly admit it. When you are a business owner, it is difficult to stop thinking about your business. When you are a woman small business owner, the burden of guilt heavily lies on your shoulder because we’re endowed with the motherly responsibility to take care of family as your number one priority. Do you attend that client meeting or skip dinner with business Dave for Family Fun Fridays? It’s the 21st century, I know, but sometimes women still feel guilty for making work a priority over family. The guilt trip is even worse when you are a single mother!
I‘m learning to cope with the imbalance of family and finances — but this is always my internal challenge as a career women. I like to think of myself as a warrior, a strong feminine representation of an ambitious career woman. I would like to think my daughter will emulate these same traits and characteristics from her mother, but I also wonder whether she will hate me for sacrificing her time with my work.