Life gets more complicated as you get older and accumulate more responsibilities doesn’t it? I mean it’s downright tricky to hold everything in balance – and to pay for it all while doing so.

In a previous post I mentioned the classic trap of starting a business as a means to provide for your family, then allowing the business to become an end in itself, that marginalises the family you set out to serve.

And this is where I find myself. With a business on the up, outwardly showing plenty of signs of success, yet I find myself a changed man in the process, less joy, less peace, less real time for the ones I love.

Yet always I tell myself, ‘The next job will be easier! I’ll stop working late when we’re making more profit! The sacrifices now are an investment in our future!’.

And these things may be true. But will the habits and priorities I am establishing now really change when I have got to the next stage, or will I just see a further stage to strive towards? Priorities need to be right at every moment, not postponed.

So, I have decided to stop the business. I won’t burn any bridges – I could restart it in future – but I am going to stop it completely, and work for someone else for a while, no loose ends. This is the only way to break it’s hold on me, the tyranny of just carrying on because the customers keep coming, and the illusion of success which is no success at all if the things that really matter to me are suffering.

Only then will I be able to assess whether I am capable of starting it again for the right reasons and in the right way. And perhaps I will rediscover the more carefree person my wife says I once was.

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