Business Management

How to Balance Your Business (So it Doesn’t Destroy Your Personal Life)

Expertise: Business Management, Personal Development, Real Estate Wholesaling
59 Articles Written

Guys, one of the biggest problems I see in the lives of those around me in real estate (and in business in general) is the issue of living a balanced life.

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I think it’s safe to say that most entrepreneurs are extremist by nature. Our minds can go from 0 to 100 in less than a blink of an eye.

The majority of the time this is a good thing, but it can (and does) create some problems.

For one thing, if we get focused on something, we get HYPER-focused, and everything else can easily be pushed to the back burner.

You see, a lot of us (me included) choose business over the “slavery” of a conventional 9-5. At cocktail parties, we entrepreneurs are the first ones to rant about the value of people’s time and the importance of lifestyle design, and we strongly advocate business as the means to facilitate that freedom for everyone.

But more often than not, we’ll exchange being a slave for the “man” for being a slave to our business.

I’m sure the people who have been at the real estate game for a while can relate — when you quit your 40 hour a week gig, you’re signing up for a 24/7 job when you start your own business!


Related: 3 Success Factors That Separate Thriving New Businesses From Failed Ventures

Structuring Your Life Effectively

The fact of the matter is you’re always connected to your business, and because of that, it’s essential if you want to have a life beyond your business that you set up boundaries.

As a business owner, there will always be more to do. You just have to structure your life where you have a stopping point each day and you have a very keen perspective on what’s most important to you.

For example, the order of my priorities in life are: my faith, my family, my health and then my business — at least, that’s what I tell myself.

But if these are truly the order of priority of my life then the first thing I should be doing with my time should follow this list in sequential order.

But does it happen that way?

Not as often as I’d liked to attempt.

The truth is, the majority of my time goes to my business, and in times where I’m really out of balance, everything else takes a backseat to my business.

I’ll work and work and work until I drop — and in those moments, I sit back and ask myself, “What kind of father am I to my kids if I’m not there? What kind of husband am I if I’m not giving those ‘top’ priorities any attention or commitment?”

They aren’t priorities at that point; they’re conveniences, and all they get is the leftovers. I want to be the kind of person who is faithful to what he holds valuable in life.

How to Get the Most Important Things in Life Done

You know, I’ve heard that Charles Schwab once asked a gentleman for advice on how to get the most important things done in life.

That gentleman replied, “Before you go to bed, write out the six most important things you need to get down in your life, and then when you wake up, don’t do number two until you finish with number one.”

It is said that Mr. Schwab was so astonished by this advice that he ended up writing that gentleman a check for today’s equivalent of $250,000.

Related: Why Following a Purposeful Schedule is VITAL to Happiness & Productivity

It’s super simple, but it’s effective: Write out a list of what’s most important to you in sequential order. Then with your time, give priority to the order of the list.

For me, this looks like starting every day reading Scripture.

Then it’s making sure that I’m always there for my daughter’s dance recitals, no matter what is happening at the office.

It also looks like regularly taking my wife on dates and leaving work at the office once I’m home. Sometimes this is really difficult, but I have to push the thoughts of work to the back burner and focus on being present for my family when I’m with them.


It also looks like hitting the gym before I get head into the office and making sure I’m eating in a way that affiliates energy and overall health.

All the things that I have placed as a priority needs to actually be a priority.

Doing this does some really positive things.

For starters, I’m a lot more focused and productive when I am at work. Because I’m balanced in the other things in my life, when it comes to the time I do give to my business, I’m a lot more present and my energy and mental focus is sharper. I tend to get a lot more done with less time.

Secondly, I’m a lot more fulfilled and happier. When I take time for the things that are meaningful to me, I get a lot more out of my time here on earth. I am happy, and that really makes the time I am at work a lot more enjoyable.

Stress is evil and demonic! Don’t allow it in your life!

Leave Enough Margin in Your Life

You see, my wife has this really cool phrase, where she says, “Leave enough margin in your life.”

What she means by that is that in your entrepreneurial ideas and endeavors, make sure you don’t over-commit to something to the point that it will hinder the other priorities in your life.

Make sure their is a time “cushion” in place just in case something you do commit to something that ends up taking more time than you think.

I think that is golden advice, as it gives yourself some room to buffer against commitments that will take away from things that are important to you.

I guess the takeaway in all this is to actually prioritize things in your life and value them to the point that business doesn’t suck the life out of you.

I have met so many people who have lost friends, marriages, and pretty much everything else in the name of “success.”

I don’t want that for you. Money is a lonely companion if that’s all you have.

Hope this inspired you this week to make some changes!

See you in the comments!

Brett Snodgrass is CEO of Simple Wholesaling and has been a full-time real estate investor for 10+ years. He specializes in wholesaling, wholetailin...
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    Replied over 4 years ago
    Hi Brett, Thank you for taking the time to write this Bigger Pockets article. I really enjoyed reading it and got a lot our of it. Have a great tomorrow, Jay
    Jeremy Hunter Real Estate Agent from Rock Hill, SC
    Replied over 4 years ago
    I connected so much to this article and felt it was written with me in mind some how. Thank you for writting this, I am definitely one who gets distracted easily and needs to be reminded of something a few times. I am definitely going to apply some actionable things to improve. Thanks again!
    Peter Mckernan Residential Real Estate Agent from Newport Beach, California
    Replied over 4 years ago
    This is a good article, there are great examples of extremism as in Gary Vaynerchuck. He hustles and hustles some more, I agree there is a balance and I believe it comes down to the person and how they really want to balance out their life. Most startup founders have a really, really tough time giving any time to anything else in life.
    Jerry W. Investor from Thermopolis, Wyoming
    Replied over 4 years ago
    Brett, I really liked this article. Thank you for taking the time to write and share it. I am slowly trying to bring my life back into focus a bit. I am getting up and walking each morning and am taking a long weekend off with my wife. I am also trying to set some priorities on what really needs done to meet my goals. We all need a reminder once in awhile to take care of what is really important.
    Ang Mast
    Replied over 4 years ago
    Your post speaks directly to the struggle that a lot of us have, thank you sincerely for shining a light and giving us a plan to be more focused on what matters the most to us in life. I will store this article with other meaningful post and come back to reread as needed.
    Account Closed from phila, Pennsylvania
    Replied over 4 years ago
    Excellent artical, I needed that… Thanks W.B. THE REN CO, INC.
    Ashish Patel from Boston, Massachusetts
    Replied over 4 years ago
    Sometimes something as simple as a list can set your whole life straight. Great article.
    Timothy F.
    Replied over 4 years ago
    Now if only someone would write an article to help me balance my personal life so that it stops interfering with my business! 😉
    Dustin Rose Investor from El Dorado Hills, CA
    Replied over 4 years ago
    Great, awesome article Brett! So true in everyway.
    Replied over 4 years ago
    I know that if I were to write down six things I wanted to get done at work, I’d probably just start all of them as soon as I could and mostly spend my time being excited about the new activities and not really getting much done. It’s always good to read articles like this so you keep going in the right direction and keep trying to live a healthy lifestyle (which includes a work/life balance).