Balancing fatherhood and work is a delicate balance, but I have a special message for every father out there who wishes to be able to be successful at business and at home. Quoting the words of Nathaniel Bronner, “no amount of business success is worth personal failure at home.” So, I want to give you five tips on how you could be successful in business as well as have a rock star relationship with your wife and your children.
Schedule Time With Your Wife One-On-One
No children. No work. Be present. Why? Because that’s how you started off the relationship, even if you have a blended family, you started off dating connecting with her and a lot of times we have a bad habit of trying to do all the things at once. So, trying to get the family time, the married time, it doesn’t work. Just schedule time with your wife one-on-one — she’s going to appreciate it. Get a babysitter and tell the kids to go do something, but do whatever you need to do to have a date night to spend time consistently with your wife. Have it scheduled. We can’t win marriage, we have to have it scheduled. Even if something comes up, you can move the scheduled date to another one.
Schedule Time With the Family
The family wants to see you. It’s not enough to simply bring home the bacon. That’s not enough because that’s not presence. It’s not giving them attention, it’s not giving them love, [and] it’s not making them feel that you actually think about them. So spend time with your family not only in a group, but also with each one of your kids one-on-one. I have two daughters — one is 13 and one is three and the quality that I spend with both of them is different, but you can imagine that the 3-year-old dominates any time that I have with my 13-year-old. So, I take my oldest daughter out to get coffee before school so that we can have our time. Well, tea because neither one of us drink coffee, but we just spend time together just talking and I get the tea on what’s going on in middle school. My 3-year-old, we play, but that time separate. We spend time as a family unit, but we also spend time separately because it’s the quality time, and when you have kids that try to compete, you can find yourself with kids that just don’t get heard, especially if you have a middle child.
Schedule Time For Yourself
Schedule fun time for yourself. Now, I’m here at work and getting ready to leave to go have fun by myself and for myself before I go hang out with friends because you can easily find yourself drained because you can get weighed down by the responsibilities of always having to be on. There are times that I don’t want to be Rev. Tartt, that I don’t want to be psychologist Dr. Tartt, I don’t want to be Daddy, I don’t want to be husband — I just want to be Alduan and watch the game. Can you feel me?! And so you have to schedule a time so everyone knows this is your time so that everyone knows that’s your time, otherwise, you may find yourself getting bitter are you gonna be looking for excitement outside of your family or your married unit which can get you in trouble.
Remember The Two Currencies: Time and Money
It’s not just about money, so make sure that you’re making the most amount of money in the least amount of time, which is working smarter not harder. One of the books that I like is called The 4-Hour Work Week by, Timothy Ferriss. As I get older, I want to end up like an NBA veteran where I play 8 minutes and make $6.2 million because I don’t have it anymore, so let the young boys go out there and work themselves out. So, as we get older, we have to get smarter and figure out ways to automate, ways to delegate, ways to make our money work for us so that we can spend more time making deposits into our wives, our family, ourselves, so that we can eventually relax in retirement.
Build A Relationship With Your Kids Outside Of Mom
Now, I’m talking to you if you have blended families and may have issues with having conflicts with the mother of your children or your child. When kids get older, especially with technology, you can have a relationship with them where you don’t have to have a negative relationship with their mom. You can go to their school, you all can FaceTime, you can text or group, you can do sports activities together where you show up and you’re the one that transports them to and from their sport of choice whether it’s volleyball or basketball.
Also, set up some rituals with your kids. One of the things that I do is read the same book with my daughter Raquel who’s in middle school. We’ll read the same book, and ask about progress and what we think is going to happen next because it’s a way for us to connect and bond as well as through volleyball. You can also schedule trips together. You can have daddy-daughter trip or father-son trips where you could hang out and that really, really, really takes the relationship and emotional intimacy to the next level because you have something that is just yours whether that’s fishing or daddy-daughter date night. I also encourage every father out there to make sure the first date that your daughter has. Your sons, you can take them camping or to basketball games and do a plethora of things together so that as your kids grow up they don’t think about daddy always being gone or always being at work because they have memories to remember you by because you’ve spent quality time together.