Let’s talk about dating while starting a business or building a brand. As if you’re not already busy enough, right?
The beginning stage of a new relationship can already be a bit time-consuming, as you both are trying get to know each other more and build the foundation that your relationship will ultimately stand on. Maintaining a healthy relationship is rarely talked about amongst entrepreneurs, which is why so many new relationships or marriages fail. It can be extremely hard for both you and your partner to maintain an emotional connection when you are trying to start a business.
This is why it is VERY important to clarify that you and your significant other have likewise goals or agendas career-wise, and as far a relationships. Let your partner know what your obligations in your career are, how much room you have for flexibility in your time, and what you are doing on a daily basis. The more that you share with them about why you are building your business and the importance of it, the more lenient your partner will be when you are answering those late night calls, and engaging in those last-minute meetings. All relationships, business and personal, are maintained very similarly. The key is to sell your significant other on your business and how much you value your brand, just as you would with future consumers or investors.
Here’s a few tips in maintaining relationships as an entrepreneur:
- Be honest and open about your commitment to your brand. Share your plans and goals with your partner. If they are the right person for you, they’ll be patient and understanding. Your significant other should be your support system, not the source of your stress.
- Involve your relationship partner in your business. Have them help you brainstorm some ideas for your business. Include them in the steps you are taking, and make them feel somewhat included in your brand. Now, I’m not necessarily saying you should become business partners. Not every relationship, especially the new ones, are equipped to handle being under extraneous circumstances like such. But let them in on some of the exciting secrets or offerings you are looking to include in your brand.
- Share you calendar and important upcoming dates. I, like many other entrepreneurs, follow my calendar and my to do list(s) religiously. Around this time two years ago, I did not even have events or important dates saved on my calendar. At that time, I was just figuring out that marketing was the field I wanted to get my Bachelor’s degree in. Being transparent about what is it you are doing and where you may be going builds trust in your relationship. It also prevents the “What are you doing” and “Umm..where are you” texts from popping up. Some couples even sync together their calendars between both of their phones. See, the thing is not to assume that your partner is always checking your calendar. Just because they may have access to it, does not mean that regular communication is exempt.
If you’re looking to start a new relationship but have a hard time meeting people, I’ve got some sweet insight into the dating scene as a millennial. Yes, things nowadays are a bit more difficult to catch up on to if you’re a baby boomer or slightly younger. But oh, the choices and choices!
Being an entrepreneur, you are probably always busy. You may not always have time to hit the bars or pop into the hottest clubs in town. Let’s be real, very rarely do people ever meet the love of their life at the club. We all know what people are looking for at 2am on a Saturday night, and it’s NOT a husband/wife. This is why dating apps and sites are great. You have the privilege of matching with someone you have the potential to date, without wasting much time or even leaving the office. Also, this makes it easier to get to know someone before even meeting them in person. Be aware though, “catfishing”is very real.
Another way to expand your dating horizons is to engage in a meet-up group near you, through Facebook or LinkedIn. Meeting groups of like-minded individuals can help you reach those with likewise career goals. You may find a date, potential business partners, or even a good friend. Even sitting in a nearby coffee shop, public library, or even the gym will create the opportunity for you to meet someone new.
It’s ideal to set your expectations early (whether high, low, or in between) that you have limited time, and that your business is a major priority in your life. It’s fair to give your new man or woman a heads up, so that they understand exactly what they are getting themselves into. I dated a guy fairly recently that had a busy career as well. It can be difficult to build trust and maintain a relationship between two people, when miscommunication occurs and both parties may not be on the same page. Save yourself and your partner the drama, and communicate on what you prioritize and where you see your career going.
Regardless of how you may approach dating as an entrepreneur, always maintain a positive attitude and healthy communication. Don’t start thinking or saying that you are never going to meet anyone, or have a successful relationship. Never set yourself up for failure, or accept defeat in your business OR dating relationships. You were ambitious enough to start your own business. Use that same motivation to conquer dating.
Thanks for reading. Happy Conquering!