This week I get quite personal in sharing something that happened between my husband and I, when he told me he is resenting the amount of time I am spending in the business. Time to get real here, as I share what to do when you are NOT in alignment…
Hi and welcome to the weekly vlog!
Earlier this week I interviewed a woman entrepreneur who was telling me that one of the benefits of working with her husband, she believes, is the feeling that they are “aligned”; both working together toward something. And she’s right, it is a beautiful thing when you are aligned!
But what if you’re NOT in alignment? What if it feels like you’re butting heads?
This was the case for me just this week with Heinz. We realized we are not in alignment right now over the amount of time I am spending in the business.
You see, I tend to be a bit of a “all or nothing“ kind of gal, and Heinz actually pointed out to me that I was working in the business WAY more than he expected me to. I heard him say that “I wasn’t practicing what I am preaching.” Wow. That felt like I was punched in the stomach. It created a few tense moments, let me tell you.
Mis-alignments happen more than any of us care to admit.
Some of you, for instance, have confided in me that your husband feels you should stop wasting their time on your “hobby business” and get a “real job”. Others I know say your partner is fearful of making a business investment.
So what do you do when you realize you’re not in alignment?
What I am going to share here is actually what I decided to do with this current situation. Because “the old me” – the wife and business partner Heinz had 20 years ago – is thankfully not who I am anymore.
The first step in my view is to retract.
And by this I mean pull back and resist the temptation to respond in anger.
That’s hard to do if there is financial pressure, for instance, but you really don’t want to get in a place where you’re saying hurtful things.
This step is a tough one for me. When I feel attacked, I can be quick to respond and too spontaneous. And I learned the hard way it’s not very productive!
The second step is to get clear on what you THINK the issues are.
In the heat of the moment sometimes we hear only part of the story. Or we make assumptions because of the tone or the words used in the conversation.
After you’ve pulled back, you can spend a bit of time figuring out what you THINK the issues are.
In my case, I got clear on the issues by getting out of the house and going for a walk. To clear my head.
Think about what your issue might be. Is it the lack of money, that your business is not bringing in enough to cover expenses, or is it that your husband is seeing you work so hard for little return?
In my case, is it him pointing out that I am working too hard and not fully practicing what I preach, especially around our WE time?
Step 3: Once you think you have identified the issues, check with your partner.
Is that the issue? Or is it just your interpretation? It’s never good, as we know, to make assumptions. So double check them!
Step 4: Make sure you are clear on where you stand.
While I didn’t like the way Heinz pointed out I wasn’t walking my talk, it IS important for me to be authentic. So if my own husband feels I don’t have balance, there is a problem!
By the same token, because I’m at the beginning of this venture, and Heinz is, for all intents and purposes, “semi-retired,” then we are going to have differences of opinions on what is the right amount of work.
I know that I want to give For Love And Business a solid effort, but I don’t want to burn myself out doing it.
So now we’re at Step 5: Carving out the time to talk about the issue during an uninterrupted period of time.
This means when you’re not too tired, and when you won’t be interrupted by business things for kids or whatever. Sometimes this is the most difficult part because life is so busy!
Realize too that this last step is not a “one and done”. You may have to have multiple conversations.
Talk, agree on a few things. Agree to disagree on others. Resolve to do certain things, and come back in a few days/weeks to check on the progress.
And we’ve talked before about the importance of checking in with each other, right? So for now…
That’s my 5 step process to address a “mis-alignment” or a disagreement:
- Retract, get some space and time: don’t lash out in anger
- Get clear on what you think the issues are
- Check whether your assessment of the issues is correct
- Get clear on where you stand
- Carve out time to talk it through.
Alignment between partners is such an important part of both your marriage and the health of your business. It’s too important to let it go unaddressed. And as you can see, it happens to everyone!
So now, I have to go. It’s our “WE Time” life partners meeting…
As always, I appreciate your questions and comments. I will definitely be sharing the results… I won’t leave you hanging!
Thanks for watching. Until next week, make it a great one!
Yours for love and business,
Featured Image Photo Credit: Nathan Dumlao, Unsplash.com