By far the most common conversation we have with the folks we interview is about work-life balance. Starting a business or pursuing a creative career makes finding work life balance really tough because there is no clear start and end to one’s work day. We’ve shared some of our conversations on the topic below.

Shelby Smith | Western Fashion Blogger

The balance I had to find between modeling and time for my family was to make more time for them than for myself. I planned strategically around certain shoots to spend time with my family. If I didn’t take breaks from constantly doing photoshoots, I would experience burnout and lose inspiration. I never want to give up my dream so a balance had to be found in order keep myself sane. Read more>>

Erin Prather Stafford | Writer and Founder Girls That Create

Having a family forced me to be more intentional with how I spend my time. I still can’t believe streaming took off after I became a mother (maybe one day I’ll treat myself to a weekend of binging an entire show nonstop). Because of family and work, it’s difficult to carve out time that addresses my personal needs. However, I’ve come to realize that 1) I must address my health and 2) I will make time to nourish the relationships most important in my life. On the health side it means keeping personal check-up appointments, finding ways to be active, and SLEEP. On relationships, it means being present, reaching out to those I care about and simply showing up when someone is in need. Read more>>

Cherice Williams | Marketing Leader, Board President, & Mompreneur

“You can have it all – just not all at one time.” This quote by Oprah is something I keep close to heart as I wear the daily hat of Corporate Marketing Leader, Nonprofit Board President, Entrepreneur, Mom & Wife. My life is filled with activities that are purpose and passion-led, and seeking this notion of “balance” is a cruel and limiting exercise. I want it all – so I take Oprah’s advice literally. I practice “segmenting” my life and purposely scheduling my hours, days and weeks so that I can be fully invested – no multitasking – into that particular commitment. Read more>>

Mychal Mitchell | Book Binder & Owner of Iona Handcrafted Books

Interesting time to talk about work/life balance. Covid19 has changed so much in our daily lives. Everything is turned a little bit upside down. I’m working differently now than I did just a few months ago. Since our store has been closed for the last 4 months, I have been working more from home on long overdue computer stuff…mailing lists, website, social media, etc. Not my forte, but quarantine gave me space and time to dive into it, and learn. Working from home can be tricky, because you can get sucked into always working, or feeling guilty if you’re not. I’m always kinda working in my head, unfortunately. Trying to get better about that. Read more>>

Billye Decker | Custom Wood Furniture Designer & Builder

Over time I have learned that balancing work and life is crucial to my mental and physical health! When I don’t set and keep a schedule for myself, I tend to work way too many hours. I end up stressed out and exhausted. When I’m overworked I start making mistakes that cost me extra time. No matter how busy I am or how many orders I have in line, me keeping the balance has proved best for myself, my family, and the quality of my furniture. Read more>>

Stacey Scott | High School Teacher & Photographer

I gave birth to my daughter in February 2020. Before I became a mom I was used to booking any kind of session at any kind of day/time. My husband would come along and be my assistant. We were the perfect combo. Now with my baby girl here things have drastically changed. Work life balance now has a whole new meaning for me. I now have to honor my schedule because I have fifty other things to do at home like pumping, breastfeeding, and the other million new things that come with motherhood. I can no longer spend hours editing photos and updating my social media. I even had to put a pause on shooting weddings. Read more>>

Shanta Brooks | Owner/Licensed Esthetician

My work life balance is very challenging. I set specific work hours for work and home but they still clash lol. I am saying “No” more often now when clients ask me to work on my off days. I think the balance is crucial to my personal relationships. You absolutely have to make time for the ones that you love. Read more>>

Michelle LaBounty | Vintage Shop Owner & Product Marketer

Balance play a huge role in my life, it is something I have to work at constantly. I don’t know if it is because I’m a Capricorn, middle child, achiever, or just plain genetics, but I spent my whole life working constantly and looking for what was next. It wasn’t until I was late 20’s and woke up and realized I hadn’t been as present in my own life as I should have been. From that point on I made it a priority to not worry about work once I got home and focus on friends, family, hobbies and things that made me happy. Since doing that my whole life has changed; I am more fulfilled and actually do the things I do with intention. Read more>>

Jamie Jaubert | Co-Owner of Mindful Journey Counseling and Wellness, PLLC and Licensed Professional Counselor Supervisor

Andrea and I have been working together for many years. We have both worked for counseling groups, school districts, and on our own. One thing we both knew we needed, with our wellness center, was a work/life balance. I have three children and she has two. We love our roles as parents, wives, friends and family members. Owning a small business can sometimes mean that those roles are compromised. Enjoying and thriving in the other roles in our lives was one of the most important factors in the decisions we made and continue to make with Mindful Journey Counseling and Wellness. When we interview a new counselor or even another professional wanting to sublease, balance is one of the first topics we discuss. In our opinion, it is the only way to truly enjoy our career and not burn out. Read more>>

Alicia Kemp | Relationship Manager & CEO/Founder

My work life balance has drastically changed over time. I used to approach the concept from a perspective of productivity but realized within the first few years after college that it was flawed. I believed that work life balance meant that you should cram as much productivity as possible into your day and offset the blood/sweat/tears by rewarding yourself with things or experiences that you enjoy (aka “living”). Life and work quickly became transactional – give until you could not give anymore and get something or do something that you enjoy as a result. I found myself working 60-70 hour work weeks in the office to push results to obtain or afford the material things that I liked and travel to the destinations that I had always dreamed of. Read more>>