Shop Talk reporter Virginia Bridges asked small-business owners if is possible to achieve a work-life balance. This is what they said.
▪ “Honestly, it depends on the goals and expectations you have for your business, what stage of life you are in and the support you have at home,” said Deborah Harrell Meehan, owner/broker at NC Medical & Commercial Realty in Cary. “I could never have done what I do now when my children were little ones. It’s encouraging to see young fathers taking a more active role in raising their kids today. With a participating, co-parenting/co-homemaking partner and with realistic goals for your business, I believe it’s more possible than ever to achieve that work-life balance.”
▪ “I believe it is possible to have harmony. A perfect balance is hard to achieve,” said Ingrid Jones, founder of Black Women in Business, which provides programs for black female entrepreneurs and corporate leaders to connect with each other. “In my opinion, harmony allows you to make everything fit together in a way that serves your priorities and responsibilities. It may look different for everyone. And you may have to combine things. I try to figure out what things I can combine, like returning emails while exercising.”
▪ “I believe work/life balance is especially attainable when your work happens to align with your life,” said Kioka Dunston, owner of kiokacoaching, which provides life and career coaching. “If I can work in a way that funds my interests and passions while honoring my personal values, I’ve found balance.”
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▪ “With the intensity of working with life crises of clients, it is important that I have work-life balance,” said Cheryl Hawkins Theriault, owner of Aging Family Services, a Raleigh company that provides consulting to older adults and their families regarding options for care. “This approach allows me to step away from work on evenings and weekends so I can be fresh and thoughtful for the next client situation that needs attention. I make a conscious effort at transition from work to home by enjoying reading a chapter of a book or tending my gardens when I get home from work and before I jump into what is next to be dealt with at home such as mail, bills and dinner.”