Jessica’s question: “How does your business serve your life?”

Meredith Paige Avatar
Joey NeJame giving Ted Talk

I quit my corporate job to start my first small business at 26 to have more time with my kids.

Mind you, this was a full five years before my first child was born, but I could read the tea leaves: If I stayed in my current career in corporate America, I’d never see my future kids.

I’m a bit of a planner.

My friend, Jessica, always reminds me that we started our businesses to serve our lives. Full stop.

In the 23 years I’ve been a mom to three boys, my business has allowed me to work from home 99% of the time. This meant I could “be there.”

And when they were younger, my kids needed me to be there a whole lot. This meant that I went to library storytime, volunteered in their classrooms, and could finish my work at 10 pm when they were asleep.

As they’ve gotten older (they’re now 23, 18, and 15)- it’s now super-easy to work “regular business hours” and not remember the whole point of running my own business – to stop and spend time with them.

Last week, my son Joey gave a presentation about a Ted Talk he gave last year at 11 am to an organization in our town. I had to remind myself not to be frustrated that the 11 am start time would cut into my “normal working hours,” and I forced myself to stop, drive across town and go to his speech.

Joey’s leaving for college in 3 weeks, so my chances to “be there” for him are now vanishing.

Jessica’s words reverberated in my head the whole way there that THIS flexibility was THE reason I started my small business in the first place.

And if I didn’t take advantage of these fleeting times with my older kids, well then, shame on me.

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