Launching a startup is time consuming. Hours are spent planning, executing, networking, in meetings – it will eat you up around the clock if you let it. There are entrepreneurs who believe striving for balance helps keep you sane; others who say you have to live and breathe your vision day in and day out by any means necessary.
In the past, Lioness has talked to partners who support their significant others’ dreams, even when the romance gets rocky. But what if your partner starts to despise the dedication you’re giving to your business? What if the long nights apart and the limited attention he receives is not what he signed up for? Here are some things to consider when he starts to despise your dreams:
Where was your partner when you decided to launch your startup?
When you first decided you were going to chase your passion, were you together in a relationship? Many times individuals embark on their journey without talking about the possible ramifications with their partners. Do you need someone’s permission to go after your goals? No. But it is considerate to sit down with your lover and have an open and honest discussion about your goals, dynamics that may shift in the relationship and whether or not you are both still interested in the same level of commitment to one another during the process.
If Thursday night was always dinner and a movie night and suddenly, without a word, you’re M.I.A., your partner has cause for concern. Little things such as this slowly stack into a big tower of a problem. Communication from the get-go is vital.
When you are together, are you REALLY together?
We’ve all been there. Someone is sitting across from you talking a mile per minute and your mind is somewhere else. For an entrepreneur, it can be wondering if you ever paid that invoice, reminded your staff about a deadline – you get the point. It can be hard to switch gears and flip the off switch.
If your significant other is thrilled to finally get some down time with you and you’re constantly breaking away to check your email, text your assistant or check your calendar, they can start to feel like a second class citizen rather quickly. Make sure to carve out time that is solely for the both of you – no phones, no computers, and no interruptions. Show them that your time with them is just as valuable.
Also, avoid the all-day business talk. It’s OK to talk to your partner about what’s going on with your business, but that should never be the only conversation on the menu.
Avoid the boss mentality at home.
The last thing your lover wants is for you to bark orders at them (well, there are some places they may not mind). Do you ever speak to him as if he is a member of your staff? Or maybe you’re guilty of assuming he knows exactly what you need and when like your assistant Jackie.
It’s easy to come home after a frustrating day and take out your anger on the person there to greet you. Sit in your car. Stop. Breathe. Regroup. Give them the fair shake of meeting a not-so-pissed-off you.
When your partner voices his concerns about your dreams, what is he actually saying? Listen and ask the appropriate questions. Decipher whether he needs more attention, is complaining about a particular behavior/deed or if he is simply jealous. Because a partner who is flat out envious of your current and future success is not worth it. Working with busy schedules takes commitment. Trying to convince your partner to believe in you or support your vision is a red flag that there is more going on than meets the eye. Whether your dream is to open a bakery or go to grad school, a true partner respects your aspirations.
Knowing when to fight for it and when to let it go.
People change and situations evolve. At the end of the day, you and your partner need to decide if you want to stick it out. Business is a bumpy ride and you need supportive people around you. You both deserve to be in a fulfilling relationship. When compromise no longer works, it may be time to re-evaluate if you are both headed down the same road or if this is the part of the journey where you part ways.