By far the most common conversation we have with the folks we interview is about work-life balance. Starting a business or pursuing a creative career makes finding work life balance really tough because there is no clear start and end to one’s work day. We’ve shared some of our conversations on the topic below.

Deanna Voss | Owner & Full Time Mom

The first full year of business was busier than we ever imagined. It was incredible! With that said, we didn’t focus on balance very well. We said yes to every event and every board even when we knew a few no’s along the way would have better served us and our business. Earlier this year, we sat and wrote out a detailed plan for the year. We both have huge goals for Full Board but most importantly, we want this to be sustainable. We want to create something that adds an experience to every clients board or event, take a little risk, and watch it multiply. Read more>>

Brianna Gordon | Owner, Designer & Lead Event Producer

When I first started KAE, I had a brand new baby and an ambitious- ride or die- mindset. I took on anything and everything in that first season, just so that I could gain experience and exposure. As the seasons have passed, I’ve learned that because I have a strong work style, its better for my personality to take on complete projects (versus just creating in one area such as flowers). Read more>>

Tom Gonnella | Father, Husband, Friend, and Business Executive

I have always focused on a balance in all areas of my life – mental, emotional, financial, and physical. With these areas as a focus, my work and family life naturally was balanced along with developing myself in many positive areas. As a younger person, I had more time dedicated to my career as I did not have a wife or children at that time. As I became older and more experienced in business, I was able to successfully migrate my time allocation to family while still achieving at a high level in business. Read more>>

Kristin Weber | Owner/Graphic Designer

When you start your own business after working for a big company you have no work life balance. You take all the work you possibly can and you do it…all hours of the day and night. There is something very intense and beautiful about that kind of hard work especially because you know that has direct returns. Finding the balance takes time, a couple years before you are able to manage your time better, possibly learn to say no to the wrong type of clients, and feel confident that more work will always be around the corner. Read more>>

Jason Criswell | Chef & Singer/Songwriter

In starting my career, and being single, having a work life balance wasn’t a very important goal of mine. In that time of society (and at that point in my life), it was all about working hard for whatever was asked of me. Being successful and sacrificing for my job was at or near the equality of success & meant an internal value of meaningfulness. As the years have whisked by, there has been a growing sense of ‘where is there a work/life balance?’ & ‘does that really exist in the workforce’. Read more>>

Kara Sample, RDN, SNS | Assistant Director of Nutrition & Wellness Services

As a school nutrition professional, I am very lucky in terms of work life balance in two particular ways. First off, our ‘business’ operates only five days a week with weekends, evenings and holidays off. Additionally, in my position, I also get the amazing opportunity to oversee our student and staff wellness team. Combined, these two perks allow me the chance to maximize my work life balance to ensure that I have optimal time with my family and the ability to take care of myself in terms of physical, mental, social and emotional wellness. Read more>>

Mitchell Bowen | Artist & Small Business Owner

I love the word balance. It has become one of the most important elements of my life and my art over the last couple years. I started as a teenage realism artist. I found picture after picture on the web, and I loved recreating them as realistically as possible. Every little detail had to be believable. Every little detail mattered, but I got to choose what those details were. It was not necessarily about having a perfect replica of the original for me, Read more>>

Cathy Woods | Long-Time International, Yoga Teacher/Retreat Leader, Author of Yoga for Riders, Horsewoman, Creator of Body, Mind, Equine Programs

Work life balance: how has your balance changed over time? How do you think about the balance? “Balance… the key to living well” ~ Yogini, Cathy Woods As a life-long yogi and horsewoman, inner and outer balance plays an important role in all aspects of my life. If fact, balance is one of my favorite words and, living a balanced life is the key to living well. Balance is not about extremes; it’s about moderation in all things. Read more>>

Christian Burton | Swim Instructor & Author

When you have young kids, parenting certainly takes up more time and energy. On the other hand, parenting young children is generally more fulfilling than being their personal Uber driver as they get older. Work wise, writing and my other creative pursuits started as an adult escape and transitioned to more of a business as the kids have gotten older. In terms of balance, I’ve always weighted the scales more heavily towards the parenting side. You don’t want parenting to be your side-hustle. Read more>>