My dad has always had a huge influence on me as a business owner and CEO.
He was an entrepreneur himself and I always aspired to be as successful, focused, and productive as he was.
Yet try as I might and even with all the privilege I fully acknowledge that I have as a white cisgender heterosexual woman, it felt SO. MUCH. HARDER for me to build my business than it looked for the man that I was trying to model.
It wasn’t until recently that I realized why.
Growing up, my household was super traditional (aka patriarchal).
My dad was the breadwinner. My mom literally laid out his clothes every night, fixed his dinner plate, and handled everything on the home and childrearing front (for the record, they liked it this way and they maintain the exact same roles to this day).
About two years ago, when I really started doing this deep work and questioning our patriarchal system, it dawned on me…
No wonder it’s so much harder for me.
Even though I have an amazing, handsome, wonderfully progressive husband who I’m most certainly not making a plate or laying clothes out for, I’d be lying if I said that I wasn’t the one carrying the heaviest mental load or doing the most unpaid work at home.
At any given moment, the inside of my brain sounds like a Micromachine commercial…
Did I give the dog her insulin shot?
Pay the balances for our daughter’s upcoming class trip?
Get fish food?
Restock the trash bags?
Make all our doctor’s appointments?
Get the dishwasher repaired?
Can you relate? I’ve often thought to myself, Wow, I could really use a sister wife right about now.
All of these things come from an extremely privileged lifestyle, yet I still gotta get it all done. I know there are SO many people who have to think about so much more who are also trying to run a business, and that may be you.
But my dad? He didn’t have to worry about any of that. It was all taken care of for him so he could focus solely on work. No wonder that as a wife and mother, I’ve been busting my butt trying to achieve his level of productivity and focus, but coming up short every time.
Acknowledging this made me feel pissed off and validated all at once.
Society’s definition of success is built on unrealistic expectations and I am DONE trying to live up to them.
So here are 5 key things I’m focusing on to make sure I don’t fall back into the Trying To Do Everything Trap:
- Constraining, which means saying no to a lot of things to make time for things I actually want to do
- Letting go of perfectionism (does that give your creative heart some serious palpitations?)
- Being OK with disappointing people
- Getting honest about what I like and don’t like
- Questioning EVERYTHING we’ve ever been told about what it takes to be successful!
I went DEEP into each of these 5 things on episode 198 of the DesignYou podcast. Click here to have a listen.
Now I want to hear from you. What would change in your life if you acknowledged that inner rebel and stopped trying to be all things to all people? How much time would you get back? How would that feel?
(Hint: I can tell you that now that I’m embracing my own version of success, my loungewear collection is growing at a much faster rate than my shoe collection!)