243 Why I Don’t Run a Family First Business

Why I Don’t Run a Family First Business

 

I'm flipping the script on the 'family-first' mantra in the mompreneur world and igniting a conversation about the real impact of prioritizing family roles over entrepreneurial triumph. In this episode, I unpack the nuances of this widespread trend and challenge fellow women in business to celebrate their personal aspirations alongside their family life. It's not about downplaying family; it's about embracing your needs without an ounce of guilt.

In this episode, I cover:

  • Critique of the "family-first business" concept
  • The importance of maintaining individual identity within familial roles
  • How to redefine success and reclaim control over their time and priorities

 

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FULL TRANSCRIPT:

Megan:  

All right, friends, I'm gonna cut to the chase. I do not run a family-first business and today I'm gonna tell you why I don't love that phrase and why I choose specifically not to use it. So let's dive in. Welcome to the Work-Life Harmony podcast. I'm your host, megan Sumrall. I'm the creator of the top program and top planner teaching all things time management, organization and productivity for women. I'm the creator of the top program and top planner teaching all things time management, organization and productivity for women. I'm also a mom and wife and, just like you, I'm juggling hashtag all the things while running multiple businesses and a family.

Megan:  

Guess what? You don't have to feel constantly overwhelmed, exhausted and stressed out. There is another way. When you have the right systems and tools to plan and manage your time, you can live a life of harmony. This is your show to learn from me and other amazing women how to master your time, planning an organization to skyrocket your productivity, so you can have work-life harmony. If you're ready to stop feeling overwhelmed, this is the show for you, and if you're new here, I'd love to get you started with my work-life harmony assessment. All you have to do is DM me on Instagram, at Megan Sumrall, with the word harmony and my team will send it right over. Hey friends, welcome back to Work-Life Harmony.

Megan:  

Today's episode might ruffle a few feathers, but you know what I'm here for it? Because this is a message that I feel very passionate about and something I'm actually excited to talk about today here on the episode, and we're just going to jump right in. So I have noticed a trend a lot recently, especially really inside of what I'm going to call the mompreneur community, meaning women such as myself, who are also moms, who are also running businesses, and I am noticing that the vast majority are feeling the need to or desire to, in all of their content that they're putting out there, really lean into the term of saying that they run a family-first business. And especially this phrase I run a family-first business comes up whenever they're sharing any information about how they are juggling motherhood and running a business. And I'm going to cut right to the chase. It flat out isn't sitting very well with me and it's been grumbling a little on my insides for a little bit and it took me a while to really figure out. Like, what is it about that? That I just don't love.

Megan:  

And the bottom line is there are three reasons. They're subtle, why I personally will never use the term I run a family first business, all right. So, first and foremost, first and foremost, it subtly implies that we can only say, as women, as moms, I run a business. If we are then saying, okay, but don't worry, my family's needs always come first and I am the one fulfilling those needs. Because when we say I run a family first business, what we're saying is no matter what, my family's needs always trump whatever I may be doing for our business. So that's the first one. Now, the second thing that's tied very closely to this is it also implies that others' needs are always even coming before yours. Right, because we're saying family first. We're not even saying I put myself above this. And the third thing that's saying this the way I'm seeing it, mentioned all the time is it's almost as if, as a mompreneur, we are feeling the need to validate our choice to run the business and spend time there, namely away from our children. And so by saying I run a family-first business, it's as if we're validating to others don't worry, hey, I'm trying to build this amazing business, but don't worry, I'm always putting my family's needs first.

Megan:  

Now, you may like this phrase and it may sit well with you because it aligns with your core values and, if so, fantastic. But here's what I find really fascinating when you read and believe me, I went and read a lot of it when you read content from male entrepreneurs, when they are discussing how they plan and manage their time as a business owner as an entrepreneur and a business owner you hear them talking about the importance of making sure that they have a calendar in place that allows them to decide what events they want to go to outside of business, around time with their friends, time for their hobbies and sometimes time with family. So what they're leaning into is saying, hey, build a business that gives you the time freedom so that you get to be a well-rounded person. But the counterparts the mom counterpart is saying okay, build a business that means you're always in a way, that means you're always putting your family first as opposed to being a well-rounded individual. Now I wanna share with you my thoughts on how I run my business and the phrase that I will openly say that, the type of business that I run.

Megan:  

Now I think it's important to mention I did not leave corporate America and start my own business because I hated my job. I loved what I did. I found it challenging. I found it credibly intellectually challenged me. I loved the people that I worked with. I made the decision to step away from my corporate job and start a business because I wanted control of my calendar right In a corporate setting. They owned me for set times every single day, and so for me, it was just a desire to say you know what? I want to be in charge of my calendar. So at the end of the day, I tell people I run a business, that's it. And if I have to put a prefix for it, I would tell you I run a Megan First business.

Megan:  

Now, this may sound very selfish and self-centered, and guess what it is. And here's why I love what I do. I love spending time helping other women get out of overwhelm and live a life that feels harmonious to them. I love teaching, time management, planning, productivity and organization. It fills me up, it challenges me. I have big goals. I run this business because it is what I truly believe I am meant to do, especially in this season of life. Will it be forever, who knows? But I do this because I love it. It allows me to be the person that I believe I am here to be, all right. And so guess what?

Megan:  

Sometimes things go on my calendar that actually put my business first, meaning I may miss something for my daughter or for my family. I may choose to not go to an event because I very strategically and intentionally decided that my business was going to come first for that particular thing. Sometimes I personally come first. There is time prioritized on my calendar for me to do the things I love outside of my family and outside of my business, and then sometimes, obviously, there are things prioritized on my calendar for my family, but they are all weighed evenly Things for me, things for business, things for family. So because of that, I am running a me-first business, meaning I'm controlling what I do and when I do it, so that I can be fulfilled, not overwhelmed, not burnout, and therefore show up as the best version of myself for me, for my family and for all the incredible women that I get to serve in this business.

Megan:  

Now I'm reminded years ago and I have shared this story before when my daughter was about eight and I was tucking her in to go to bed that night and I was so close to finishing something that I'd been working on at the very early stages of my business and I was really excited about it when she knew I'd been working on it. So I was leaving room like, all right, I'm going to go finish that thing up. And she said to me as I was walking out of her room that night. She said, mom, sometimes I feel like you like work more than me. She might've even said love, work more than me. Now, if you're a mom. That was like a stab in the heart, but it allowed us to have a really important conversation. And so I turned back around and my first instinct was to like dispel all that and validate no, of course I love you more. But I paused in the moment and I said why would you? Why do you think that? What makes you say that? And earlier that day we had spent the afternoon playing endless rounds of Go Fish like endless rounds of Go Fish, and it was fun for a while.

Megan:  

After an hour of Go Fish done, and she said sometimes, when we're playing games together, I feel like you might you want to finish up something for work rather than play another card game. And so I paused. I said you know what? You're right. I said sometimes I might. I said let me explain this to you. I said now, before I met your dad, like when I was born, I was just Megan, just as you are. You and I did all sorts of things. I had all sorts of hobbies and interests, I spent my time doing lots of great things. And then I met your dad and then, because my husband calls me Megs, I said so. Then I got to be Megs and Megan.

Megan:  

I said now do you think, because I married your dad, that I stopped doing the things that Megan liked doing and only did stuff with him? She laughed and she said of course not. I said of course not. I said sometimes I was Meg, sometimes I was Megan. And then I told her, and then you were born, and now I got to add mom. So now I get to be Megan, I get to be Megs and I get to be mom. And I said and just because I became mom doesn't mean that Megan goes away, right? And that she could see where this was going. Did she love it? Of course not. She's eight. What eight-year-old doesn't want to be the center of the universe, right? That's what a child should desire to be. And so I said, sometimes Megan has been working really hard on a really long project and when Megan steps away from it to go be all in on mom and play games for a really long time, sometimes Megan just wants to go back and spend that last 10 minutes so that I can feel a sense of completion and something that I'm really proud of. And she nodded and I said just because I need to be Megan sometimes doesn't mean that I don't love being mom. And of course, that led to all the conversations of what about emergencies and what if I broke my arm.

Megan:  

We all have our own boundaries and rules around levels of importance and all of that. But it is something that we continue to use here in our household. Where I talk about, I'm in the middle of something and we're heading out, maybe to go do something in the evening or go for a family walk or something I'll say to my family hey, hang on, megan just needs about three more minutes and then mom and Megs is here for the rest of the night, and it's a good way of communicating and a way of reminding everybody hey, we all carry different roles and responsibilities in our life and we need to have boundaries and we need to have planning and we need to have structure in place that supports that. So fellow business owners out there, or whatever role, might be filling a large portion of your time. What if we just drop the prefixes and we don't have to give any precursors or make other people feel good about the choices that we're making?

Megan:  

I run a business. If I'm in a room full of people and they ask me, what do you do, I just say I run a business and then spend your energy and time creating a business that allows you to live your life, allocating your time the way you desire to do that, so that you get to be the best version of you that for yourself, for your family, for your business and for everybody else in your life. And that might mean that sometimes your business comes first, or you come first If you are somebody like me. It may mean that you make choices that serve you well. I know for me, when I think about family first, like I always thought I was going to be, that mom that loved going on field trips. Guess what? I went on my first field trip and I realized this was not a good time for me. So it meant I found other ways to volunteer at school time. That did not mean that I needed to go on field trips right, I actually wasn't putting my family first on going to every single field trip but where I could spend my time and my services and my skills were far better leveraged somewhere else and friends.

Megan:  

This is why I teach what I teach. I want women to reclaim control over their time and their calendar. Not so you can be in service to everyone else all the time, not so you can control your time, to be in service to yourself, to have the time for all the pockets of your life in a way that is stress-free and not overwhelming. Now, if you are newer here to the show and you're interested in learning more about what I teach as it relates to time management, organization and planning, I invite you to go over to the top program. Top stands for time management, organization and productivity. You can go to the top program dot com and on that page I have a button where you can click a video to learn a little bit about my approach to time management and then also inside that video, I tell you everything that is included inside of the top program and how I break down my framework of teaching, so I hope that you will join me in just running a business in a way that serves and fulfills.

Megan:  

Getting on top of all things time management, organization and productivity doesn't have to stop just because this episode is over. If you want one tap access to all of my training and current top podcasts, go to the app store or Google play and download the pink B app. It's one word, the pink B it. It is jam-packed with simple yet powerful tips and strategies to get you out of overwhelm and into harmony. And if you have a question you want me to cover on a future episode, go to iTunes and ask your question in the podcast review section. And while you're there, don't forget to leave a five-star review.


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