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.

Morgane Di Meglio-Hope | Communication Specialist

I was born and raised in France, a place where vacation time is absolutely sacred. So when I moved to the US and started my first corporate job, I thought it was a bad joke when I was told 2 weeks was standard. How could that possibly be enough time to visit all my relatives in France, and also explore countries on my bucket list? I could not wrap my French head around it! If there is one thing the French are good at – apart from cheese and pastries – is work life balance. One could argue the French work to live while the Americans live to work. Read more>>

Trevor Stovall | Bassist

Trevor: I think being in college, especially during COVID has changed our balance whether we like it or not. We live together so we never really “turn off” discussing the band or thinking about what we can do next. It’s always been our collective goal to keep this going and find success in small ways. With school being online we just have that opportunity to think creatively all the time and continually work on the band. Milo: I agree with Trevor about how COVID has shaped our last year. We have been able to really concentrate on making music and creating a set of great new songs, that has for sure been to our benefit. It’s also been easier to balance creating music with online classes rather than in-person classes. Read more>>

Jenn Golgan | Tattooer

When I started there was no balance lol. I worked a job and did my apprenticeship. I pretty much worked every single day all day. On top of that a toddler then I got pregnant again. So the balance only started in the last couple years. I’ve finally been able to keep a schedule that works for me and my family. Some late nights and early mornings drawing, but doing everything in my power to spend time with my family while still working to be better at what I do. I guess just practice and Patience. Read more>>

Cairo Green | Cosmetologist & Salon Owner

In my opinion, work life balance is such a foreign concept in the US. So many countries pride themselves on providing balance for their residents. But here in the states, it’s like you are born to work until you can’t — taking no real time for yourself unless you are sick or put in time off requests months before, and even then, worried about how you’re gonna make up the time. One of my biggest reasons for transitioning to work for my self is that I refuse to continue spending my entire life working long hours for whatever amount someone assigned to me. I’ve missed out on so much because I felt like the only way to get where I want to be is to work, work, work! It’s been ingrained in us for so long, ie, “Sleep when you die” or “I’ll sleep when I’m rich”…. That’s such an unhealthy way of living, but so many don’t have any other option. Thankfully, I’m in possession of a skill that makes that possible. Read more>>

Tosin Akinnagbe | Entrepreneur/ Generational Wealth Engineer

Lately, I have had more people telling me to stop working all the time. Previously I was a member of a team or was the guy to-go-to, my efforts would complement the individual and group contributions of all other members accumulating together to accomplish the goal. As the engine and driving force for Diaspora or any company, I have been the fuel. The term no days off takes another meaning. Read more>>

Sondrea ‘Dre’ Demry-Sanders | Hairstylist

I let go of the idea of balance a while ago. It felt like it was an unattainable goal for me and as a result I was beating myself up when my life wasn’t in “balance”. It like seeking perfection. Instead I started to shoot for the ability to flow. To be open to all that come my way, and to be flexible. I pray for the discernment to keep the things that flow into my life that I need, and to continues to always release what doesn’t. Now I am kinder to myself, and I can navigate the world without a balancing act. Read more>>

Emily Maynard | Designer & Founder, Elva Fields

When I started my business almost 18 years ago, I didn’t have children, so my focus was entirely on growing Elva Fields. I love to create and to work, so putting all of my energy toward my job felt joyful and fun. I could also quickly and easily became consumed by it, veering toward a very unhealthy dedication to all things business, to the point in which life and work had no real separation. Once my daughters were born, I found it was difficult to extract myself from this way of running my business, and I took no maternity leave with either child. (Not something I’d recommend AT ALL.) Read more>>