Our community is filled with hard-working, high achieving entrepreneurs and creatives and so work-life balance is a complicated, but highly relevant topic. We’ve shared some responses from the community about work life balance and how their views have evolved over time below.

Rochelle Dammel | Abstract Fine Artist

The work/life balance for artists can be a little complicated. In many ways, there is no balance between the two as work and life are one and the same. As a mostly abstract 2D artist, I am always observing my surroundings to find new ways to be inspired by color, texture, and emotion. In my studio, at the grocery store, sitting in traffic, hiking in the mountains. There is value and possibility in everything we do in life that can be made into work. Years ago as a beginning artist, I attended a lunch at Seattle’s Gage Academy, The established artist there said that the difference between a hobbyist and a professional artist is professional artists must show up and paint everyday, even on days when they don’t feel like it. While I agree that this definitely helps with flow and production of work, painting or even being in our studio isn’t the only part of “work” that we do daily as artists. Reading, journaling, seeing our surroundings from an artistic perspective and truly being present all play a role in the work we do as preparation for the actual act of painting. Read more>>

Paige Sparkman | Bridge Between Marketing and a Virtual Assistant

My approach to balance has changed recently, because I would prefer to work really hard now, so my later years can be enjoyed. In my world, sometimes balance means taking a Monday off, and working through the weekend. Other times it means having a slow, enjoyable morning and working late into the night. The beauty of working for yourself is creating your own hours, and I absolutely love that flexibility. Finding the balance oftentimes means being selfish, and that isn’t always the easiest thing to do, but it’s critical. Read more>>

Teddy Weeks | Songwriter

I have made music for the last 10 years of my life, through high school, college, jobs, relationships, and even unemployment. Before I used to think that the song (or idea) would just hit you when it hits you, and you have to drop whatever you are doing and write it. I don’t think that is necessarily true anymore. Sometimes the ideas hit you like a brick, but I’ve found if you really give your creative process all of your focus, oftentimes the ideas are like a slow burn that appear more and more when you are working. Sorry thats a round-about way of saying, I used to work erratically no schedule, just when I had a free moment. But now I sit down at the same time everyday and work like its a job. Read more>>

Britt Margit | Marketing Manager & Songsmith

I am someone for whom life can often be about work. I’ve always chosen to follow a career path that I’m passionate about (notably stories and community), so it can be difficult to pull myself away from my screen at the end of the day. And when I began working with Second Star to the Right Books, that balance became more difficult than ever because I was working in the same place that I was supposed to rest, recharge, and nourish myself (AKA home). When the world transitioned to remote work over the past year, I was often asked by friends how I’d managed it for so long. My honest answer? I was doing no better than they were – still feeling like I had to be productive at all times, even while recognizing this was not the case when I worked in an open office. But having those conversations leant necessary perspective, a reminder that we don’t live to work, we work to live. A cliché, perhaps, but a true one. Read more>>

Tyler DuBois | Pickler and Co-Founder of The Real Dill

Work life balance can be a very tricky thing to achieve, but it is very important to us. Not only do we value our work life balance, but it is also important to provide this to our staff. I think that if you are happy and fulfilled outside of work, your time working is more meaningful and productive. We work fairly “normal” hours. The staff works Monday through Friday for eight hours a day, and has the weekend off. We also give paid holidays off through the year, including a paid week off around Christmas and New Years. This is certainly not the norm in our industry, but it is a great way for us to help our employees achieve work life balance and show them that we appreciate them. My personal work life balance has only improved every year since starting the company. At the beginning, when Justin and I started the company we both had full time jobs. We would pickle after work in preparation for the coming farmers market season. We would then work the farmers market all weekend long. It wasn’t long before we realized that this was not sustainable, so we both put in our two weeks notice and never looked back. Read more>>

Sydney Zwicker | Women’s Health Mentor + Pelvic Care Specialist

This is a great question. Growing up in the Northeast, I definitely did not know work/life balance, it was all hustle. Moving to Colorado definitely changed that for me. There is a different rhythm here, if you go at 110% people feel you are trying too hard. My work-life balance has also changed due to my work. As a bodyworker, I have a limit to the number of clients I can see in a day or week. I make sure to have sustainable boundaries so that I can keep serving my community. Especially with Holistic Pelvic Care ™️, it takes a lot more energy to hold that trauma-informed container. I think one of the main downfalls to our healthcare system is that often appointments are rushed. Clients are in and out without the time for integration. By having this time set aside for clients at each appointment, it also allows me to slow down as well. In the wellness industry, we are always advocating for self-care. To stay in integrity, I try my best to practice what I preach. I set aside weekly time for my own self-care because finding this balance is integral to our health. Read more>>

Ali McCorkle | Visual Artist & Graduate Student

I began my small business, Custom by Ali, in the midst of the COVID-19 pandemic. My fiancé and I had just moved from the Rocky Mountains to Northern Colorado, where I knew about 2 people and no longer had a 9-5 job. At the time, I was not seeking balance. I needed a distraction from the loneliness of being in a new town during a pandemic and I hoped to reignite my creative spark and possibly connect with other makers in my area. In addition to opening an Etsy page, I signed myself up for an in-person outdoor market. I got to work creating my first collection to complement my bread and butter–custom hand embroidered backpacks and painted denim jackets. While prepping for the market, I oscillated between imposter syndrome and feeling like a real creative with something to offer. I remember staying up and stitching until midnight the entire week leading up to the market and feeling a weird combination of exhilarated and exhausted. 7 months later, and now a full-time graduate student, work/life balance is different. Where over the summer, my creative work was my only work, now, it is the alter ego to my academic work. Read more>>

Misty Burns | Massage Therapist and HR Executive

Instead of viewing work/life as a balance, I’ve thought about this in terms of “blend”. To me, the word “balance” infers somehow having to be “equal”, when indeed, what gives us satisfaction and gratification as humans is so personal and at times, anything but “equal”. Over the years, and throughout my career, I’ve been much more honest and realistic about what matters most, what fills my energy tank – and have committed to doing things that indeed fill the tank. Fortunately, I’ve found a path that fulfills both a professional journey and personal aspiration. Read more>>

Jackie Zoeller | Photography Company

o me, balance is akin with peace. We recently welcomed our 4th child to the world in 2020. Finding “balance” between being self-employed, being a mom to 4 kids under 7, being a wife, and then trying to take care of basic things like sleep, exercise, and regular practices to keep myself centered like relaxing or prayer and even having friends has been intense. Prior to having kids I didn’t even really know there was such a need for a balance, it was organic and intuitive. I’d work however long I needed and then there was just time for anything else. I love working, and love making art …but over the years having a family has turned into my number one priority so to me, balance is complicated. I’ve not figured out how to happily sleep less or make days longer. Today, it seems like the best path to my personal balance is being intentional to understanding myself more, listening to when I’m not doing okay and making adjustments from there. Read more>>

Kassia Binkowski | Creative Director & Founder

I am the mother of three children under the age of four. I have twin toddlers. I am a wife, a daughter, a sister to five siblings scattered across the country. A true millennial, I have friendships scattered like the wind in the wake of my twenties which were spent bouncing from coast to coast, dear people who have helped chisel the shape of my soul whom I see too infrequently but desperately try to hold on to. I am a small business owner. I am parenting through a pandemic. 
There is no balance. There never has been. Maybe some day, but for the time being my life exists in the messy middle. Read more>>

Lauren-Claire Poitevent | Denver Realtor

Work life balance is such a hot topic, especially as an entrepreneur. I used to chase the idea of “work life balance” which is incredible difficult as an entrepreneur, especially in the first few years of the business! In the first few years, I was working non stop and had a constant feeling of guilt because I felt like I “should” be able to have a successful business and have a balance in life. Now, years later, I personally do not believe in this concept. I don’t think you can ever achieve the perfect balance, especially if you have big ambitions. And guess what? That is okay!! I do think it is very important to make sure you are scheduling time in your schedule to take care of yourself whether that be working out, meditating, spending time with your community because you have to take care of your own being in order to be your most successful but it’s okay if you don’t have perfect balance! Life is ever changing and your business will be ever changing. You may feel more balanced in certain seasons of your life than in others and that is absolutely okay. Read more>>

Jennifer Rohling | Professional Photographer

When I first started my business I threw myself all in as I worked on my business at all hours of the day. After a couple of years, I realized that I had to come up with a game plan on a business and personal life balance. Sticking to a business hour plan was the best limit I put on myself. My family life is my free time and what I live for. It make me a better business owner. Read more>>

Nenada Huffmon | Owner & Operations Manager – Old Barrel Tea Company

Work life balance is something that I have been trying to master since I was in college – working two jobs and taking night classes while trying to meet friends and maintain current relationships. I am sure this is the case for so many of us! In most recent years, owning and operating several businesses, having a toddler under the age of two, and trying to enjoy quality time with my husband and family/friends all while maintaining self care rituals has had its challenges. It has also allowed me to really find my currently comfortable balance. I know that everyone is very different, but I do feel like I function best when I am busy. When I am busy and have my plate full, I really try to ensure that I can balance my time in the best way possible so that nothing gets neglected. Most times, the thing that does get neglected is self-care, which I have come to find is actually one of the most important. I will time block my days and build in time for each aspect of my life. Do I always succeed? No. But when I don’t, I have that accountability and can prioritize better the following days. Read more>>