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Being “Present” for Family & Business

cell-phoneCurrently working on several continents, I often have urgent, foreign language messages which appear on my Phone, or in my e-mail inbox. All require immediate attention. Some are positive, many are negative, since most people all around the world only want you when something is going wrong, lol.

Let’s be honest.

And so I hurtle along, in addition to taking care of a Family as best I can.

The rest of the family is watching a silly movie. I keep half of one ear tuned to the show, while dealing with other documents into the night. We might go for a scenic drive on a day off and I check e-mails so that when we are on a walk together, I am not checking my phone. I suggest they go and explore this or that on their own, while their father and I enjoy a coffee, each of us discussing the next day’s schedule or ipadwhat’s happening in our individual empires.

I try my best to be “present” in the moment. Sometimes that means telling Business contacts why I will not be available for the next 24 or 48 hours. Non-negotiable.

Sometimes that means telling the family why I will be under extreme pressure and not fully available for the next day or two. Always negotiable, because they always seem to have needs right when I’m being pressed the most. I’ve tried to avoid informing them of my own deadlines to see if that assists in diminishing their own neediness.

Not really.

macbook-proSo I’ve learned to accept that life happens and we must roll with it. Hard for a Type-A person to acknowledge, but I guess I’m becoming a better, more fully rounded person in the process.

I see the mothers with young children, zoned out on the cell phone, while supposedly spending time together. A certain amount of that should be no problem, but personally, if I’m out walking, I tend to want to be aware of my environs (or focused on little ones who may be playing and fall). It’s a delicate balance. Not sure if they are handling multiple empires around the world, or just fielding a call from a friend, but life marches on and soon the families will be grown and gone. Occasionally, put the phone down.

Someway, somehow, we need to focus on both family and business and not apologize when one or the other requires some extra time. It’s all important.

And so, we become professional jugglers. Not a bad gig at all.

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Being “Present” for Family & Business


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