Episode Overview

Building a business is tough, and when you start talking about adding people to the business, now you add more challenges.  But what if business partner or employee is actually your spouse?  Well, buckle up and prepare for a ride!

In this episode, we walk through the top 10 challenges that we have faced while working with each other on our various businesses.  We then talk through changes that we have implemented to try and resolve these problems, as well as discuss how those changes went.  Whether or not you work with your spouse, this episode will provide some valuable tips for how to work with others in your business.

Episode Key Points

  • Why your partner’s pet peeves are amplified when you work with them
  • How to allot time to dedicate to your businesses
  • How to manage an ever growing todo list in your business
  • How you can buy back your time that you business has taken
  • Why there is more than just work/life balance and what you may be missing
  • How a shared calendar can help organize your life
  • Why a traditional job should not define who you are
  • The importance at reflecting and tracking what you actually complete
  • How talking to people outside of your spouse can help keep things in balance

Episode Free Download

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Episode Transcript

 

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SSP Show 5 Transcript

0.00

Tom: This is the Serial Start-ups Podcast Show 5. In this episode we’re going to discuss some of the challenges of working with your spouse.

So welcome back to the Serial Startups Podcast. My name is Tom Sylvester and I’ll be your host and I have my lovely wife here, Ariana.

Ariana: Working for brownie points.

Tom: Absolutely. But we’re talking this episode about working with your spouse so I’ve got to kick things off on a positive note because we’re going to get into some challenging topics as we go through here so you’ve got to get those brownie points to start.

1.00

Tom: Alright, so I probably say this a lot but this is such an important topic for entrepreneurs but just people in general. Getting married or being in a relationship is challenging and a lot times I know people look at us and they’re like, oh you guys have the idea life or marriage. You’ve got two kids. You’ve got these businesses, but it is a challenge. We’ve gone through ups and downs especially once you add doing a business on top of that. You just run into so many different challenges that are challenging when you’re talking about a personal life but they’re very challenging when you add all of the failures and the mindset and everything else that comes with running a business.

Ariana: Yeah we definitely have had our issues in the past trying to just deal with some of your partner’s…the way that they do things that you may not agree with, some of those annoying little ticks that they do and a large picture might not bother you but on a day to day basis when you’re working with someone, some things just drive you nuts and just trying to go through how to deal with those things and how to keep your marriage healthy and keep each other happy.

2.00

Tom: And we’ve mentioned this before. We have a program, 30 Days to Launch and it’s in our Start-up Academy and once again, people are surprised that we focus so much on pulling your partner in when you’re going to start a business, even when your partner isn’t going to be involved in the business, because it’s going to take time and money and it’s going to take communication because you’re going to have to spend time to build your business. So it’s so important to be on the same page with your partner and this leads into our show today. About six months ago, we actually sat down and we each put a blog post together on the top five challenges that we had when working with each other. We did those separately. We pulled them together and then we talked about what can we do going forward to improve on this challenge? And that blog post laid out some actions so what we’re going to do is walk through each of those top ten things today, talk about the challenge, and then the action that we came up with and now that we’re six months later, we’ll look at did we put it into action and then what were the results of that?

3.00

Ariana: I’ll let Tom start with his first struggle.

Tom: Alright, so number one, my biggest challenge was getting time for us to actually focus on the business discussions and work on the business together. At this point, we had had multiple businesses, and our basic strategy when we started a business is we start the business, it takes a lot of time, and we focus on quickly getting it profitable and getting to a point where we understand the systems and the processes that go into that and then automating that and then outsourcing that. So we did a couple times, but what that ended up leading to was, I was working on growing the business stuff, Ariana was typically working on the running of the business, and we were each kind of doing our own thing but we weren’t syncing up on the things that I needed to know from her on running the business so I could help and she wasn’t really understanding some of the next steps I was looking for growing the businesses. So because we never had time to talk about that, we were working kind of in our own silos and not sharing our supporting each other to get past some of those challenges.

4.00

Tom: So, what we came up with a couple months ago was really making sure that we set aside time each week to review the businesses, to sync up on things, and make sure that we are talking through each of the businesses we have and not only what’s going on right now with them but what’s going on in the future. And if you listen to our show before where we talk about goal planning, so if you listen to our goal planning show, you’ll know that one of the key things we talk about with goal planning is syncing up on a weekly basis. So since then, we’ve actually set aside Friday afternoons to really just go through the past week and the upcoming week so that we’re aligned and we understand what we each have to do.

Ariana: He has Friday afternoons, but really he means Friday, whenever we get a free moment.

Tom: And this is the reality when you are parents and you have kids at home.

Ariana: So I’m going to jump in and talk about one of my challenges as you’ve heard Tom talk about on the reality checker and he is the motivated entrepreneur and that’s one of my challenges, is having a motivated spouse who just keeps continuing to add more and more things to my list of things to do.

5.00

Ariana: And a lot of the reasons I had a problem with that are because being a stay at home, work from home parent is a job in itself. So you’re trying to take care of the kids, and do the household chores and keep everything up as you’re going plus you’re working on top of that, so my time is very valuable because I don’t have very much extra time. Having a spouse who keeps adding things to my list gets very frustrating for me because I don’t know where to fit that in – that means I might have to sacrifice something else that I’m already doing. How do I choose what to sacrifice? A lot of times, I would get so stressed out trying to figure out which item should be my priority that I wouldn’t get anything done so that was just not working for me and when we wrote this blog and we sat down to talk about these things, we decided that one of the things that we need to do in our weekly sync up when we talk about the business stuff, is really lay out these new ideas and these plans that we think we want to add in and discuss how they fit with our end goals and how they fit in with our current schedule to see if that’s something that’s really practical for us to add on at this time.

6.00

Ariana: And also, Tom talked about outsourcing, we did decide okay, we do need to do some of these new items, that means we need to get rid of some of the old things that we’re doing so we were able to actually outsource a couple tasks for Sylvester and also for Warsaw. So that really helped us kind of move to the next step of okay, how can we add these new things on that we want to start doing?

Tom: Yeah. The two things we always talk about that people have in their business is time and money and with time, we all have the same amount of time. It’s just how we use it. Money, that can vary up or down.

7.00

Tom: But what we try to constantly focus on is how do we use the money that we’re making in our business to buy back the time that that business initially took from us? So when we outsource some of these things, it ended up costing us a little bit of money but what that did was buy back our time which time is way more valuable than money. I know that may be a tough thing especially if you’re struggling financially now, but overall, we can always make more money but we can never get more time back.

Ariana: That leads into Tom’s next challenge.

Tom: So, because of our process of really starting out working hard but then trying to outsource it, unfortunately our first process out outsourcing is typically it goes from me to Ariana. I am very good at looking at new business opportunities and getting them launched and started, and then Ariana is very good taking all the craziness that has gone on in the week to launch something and put it down into the repeatable processes that we use, document that or make whatever processes or procedures solidified and then part of the problem that we ran into was she would get stuck at that point of actually doing those procedures and we sometimes wouldn’t get to the next piece is actually outsource it to somebody else.

8.00

Tom: So there’s a fantastic book out there that I would recommend anyone looking to start a business to read, it’s called the e-myth. And in that, one of the ideas that he talks about is working in your business versus working on your business. So a lot people that fail as entrepreneurs or fail as business owners tend to work in their business so they’re actually creating the thing instead of working on their business which growing it. So the nature roles that we tend to fall into in most businesses is am working on the growing the business and Ariana starts working in the business on actually managing the day to day operations but where we get stuck here was if she doesn’t get that outsourced to somebody else and if I don’t help her do that, then I just keep putting more and more stuff on her plate and she gets stressed out.

9.00

Ariana: Or things don’t get done which is also bad.

Tom: Yeah, so what we focused on at this point was we really took a look everything Ariana was doing and we started saying what are the first things that we should outsource, either because you shouldn’t be doing them because we have somebody that can already do them or you don’t enjoy doing them.

Ariana: Yeah a great example is for Warsaw, our retail liquor store; I was doing all of the purchasing. Every week I would have to look at our list to see what’s low in stock, what do I have to re-order, I have to look at the budget, okay we have to go through. Here’s all the things we want to order, here’s all the things we can actually order, figuring that out, putting the actual order in, and then making sure that those items came in correctly and just all of the things that that entails and it would take up quite a bit of my time each week so that was one of the first things that we really looked at. How can we write this process down, get a working procedure for it, so that someone else can take over this task and I save my time for something else?

10.00

Ariana: So we actually successfully did that at the beginning of this year and it has been amazing that I don’t have to worry about that every week. You know, I touch base with the employee of ours that took over the purchasing usually every week or two, but it’s not something that I have to have on my mind at all times.

Tom: Yeah, so I think we’d say we’re pretty successful with this one. We’ve been able to take a lot of those procedures and outsource them to other people or even automate them sometimes with tools, which we went back to the first podcast, I said I wanted to launch this show a year ago and one of the reasons we couldn’t launch this show a year ago was because we were both so busy doing this type of stuff. So the whole reason that we’re even able to this show now and focus on Serial Start-Ups is because we really have been able to automate and outsource the majority of stuff for those other businesses.

11.00

Ariana: Yeah, so I’m going to jump in with my next challenge. I had an issue trying to figure out splitting the time that we do have between the businesses, spending time with the family, having just adult time for the two of us and our relationship, and then having personal time that we each privately get because it’s important for everyone to have that down time and not everyone likes to be alone but you know, a lot of people are very solitary before they find the love of their life and it’s important to get some alone time every now and again and do something that you love. And then for your relationship, whether you’re married or you’re just in a relationship with someone, it’s always important to have that time to yourselves to really connect with each other and to distress and just have fun because that’s an important part of any relationship. And then the family time. Obviously, when you have kids you want to spend time as a family, you want to spend time maybe having daddy time or mommy time so that your children equal time between all of you and then obviously is necessary if you’re going to have a successful business. So I know that Tom had an issue with that as well.

12.00

Ariana: So I kind of stole that challenge and made it mine but the way that we have…

Tom: And before you jump in our solution, I think one of the things people often overlook is you always hear about work-life balance. But what we’ve realized is there’s a lot more to it than that. So, if we look at life for example, it’s not just life-balance but there’s sub categories there. So, Ariana enjoys singing. That’s one of the things that she’s done. So, part of what we want to do is make sure that she can go out and do some of those hobbies that she enjoys.

Ariana: And crafting.

Tom: And crafting. And now that we’re parents, we have two kids, there’s not a lot of time and we noticed this the last couple months now that we have our son, we don’t schedule time for us to be together. It tends to get taken away from everything else…

Ariana: It dissipates in the chaos of everyday life.

Tom: Yep, so it’s just so important to realize that it goes beyond work-life balance and this solution that Ariana is going to share with you is really helped us.

13.00

Ariana: Yeah, this is huge and it’s a very simple solution and it’s free, so yay. We use Google Calendars to split everything out. We have color coded all of our different aspects so each business has its own color, we personally have our own colors, we have colors for the kids, Tom has a color for work, we have everything split out and then we’ve shared our Google Calendars with each other as well. So this allows us to really go through week to week and say okay, what do we have for this week? Oh, Alaina has got soccer. Okay you’re going to take her to soccer. I’ll stay home with Ty or we’re going to go as a family and we’ll do something family-fun event after. One weekend we went to soccer and then we went to the museum. So really just putting that out there and making sure that you are allocating that time and using it so you aren’t feeling left out. We also put a date night on the calendar. We decided we want to do at least once a month. We’re going to do a real adult date night. We’re going to have somebody watch the kids, go out to dinner and do a movie or see a show or do something on our own so that we have our time for our marriage.

14.00

Ariana: And then you know, the same thing with our family, making sure that we have a special event put out on the calendar and then the businesses. Making sure we have anything that we need on there. We can all see it. We can sign in. We can edit it. We can add things. It’s been great. We’ve been using that the past what – month?

Tom: Yeah, well I think we’ve used it for a long time.

Ariana: We’ve used it for a long time – yes, we’ve actually done the full out color coding and really been concentrating on keeping track of that calendar.

Tom: Yeah and I think the recent shift that has really helped us is actually a lot of these challenges really come back to just communication. So, when we meet every Friday or once a week, part of what we do weekly is we pull up this shared calendar. We can add stuff on it during the week, but we really look at what does the week look like? And then I think one of the things that we’ve been that’s been very important is we put things in the right priority so we make sure that we plan things like our date night.

15.00

Tom: We plan the events that we’re going to do as a family and as kids first and then we put the business and other stuff around that. So we’re making sure that we’re really putting our priorities in order as we do that calendar. Alright, so my next challenge is challenge number five and this one was tough for me. Ariana doesn’t realize how great she really is. And let me explain that a little bit more. And I’m sure some of the people listening to this can understand. So Ariana went to school for zoology and then never actually got a job doing anything with zoology. She bounced around between a couple jobs and she picked up so many valuable business skills doing those jobs that have helped our businesses become successful. And the last three and a half years, you said earlier, stay at home. Now you’re like work from home mom. And one of the things that I’ve noticed with her and we’ve been talking through is a lot of people put their worth into the job they have. The challenging thing with Ariana is because she’s staying at home and she really hasn’t had a structure around the business and the work we do, often times I’ll hear her saying, well who cares about what I have to think.

16.00

Tom: No one’s going to care about that. Or like this came up a lot when we were writing the blog post. We talked earlier; Ariana hated writing the blog post. And her big thing, she’s like well, she’s kind of discounting herself. I’m just a stay at home mom. I just do the business stuff and I don’t think she’s realized and I think you’ve done a lot of this since then, where it’s like oh man I have to put up with Tom. That’s a job itself. But I run multiple businesses. I mean she manages the day to day operations of our real estate business, of our wine and liquor store, on top of our house and everything else. So I think that people that end up not having a traditional job sometimes forget how much knowledge they have, how much experience they have, and how much that can contribute not only to their business but also to their self-worth and their life.

17.00

Tom: So one of the big things that we said we were going to do when we talked about this a several months ago, was really make sure that we talked together as a couple and highlight what each of our skills are and then make sure that we’re taking credit for that in the business and aligning what roles we take in the business with what our skills are. And even with this Serial Start-ups, we’ve split our responsibilities into where we each bring value and now that we’re reviewing it each week, I think we get to see the progress that we’ve made that week.

Ariana: Yeah and Tom has been great with helping me realize my potential and I brought up to him to, it’s hard when you leave the corporate world of working and you become a work from parent. Sometimes because you have all that chaos, your brain function starts to decrease a little bit because you have five million channels going on at the same time.

18.00

Ariana: So it’s taken a little bit for me to get back into thinking about a job which is really what this is. I do have a job on top of staying at home. Just I had to change my view on how all of that fits in and what that means for me. So it’s definitely helped in the past couple months just changing up how I think about all that stuff and Tom reminding me over and over again.

Tom: Alright, so let me ask you guys a favor. If you can jump over to the show notes at serialstartups.co/show5, and just leave a comment and if you’ve experienced this or if you’ve seen this in your spouse let us know because I this is something that barely anybody talks about but it’s such an important topic.

Ariana: Yes. So we’re going to jump to another tough topic. This is mine, we’re on number six I think and one of the problems that I do have as a work from home parent and me being the one that’s running the day to day portions of the business, is how to keep your spouse involved without adding further stress.

19.00

Ariana: Tom has kind of a high stress job that he does like what he does but it does give him a lot of stress week to week and I don’t like to add on to that. I know he’s got a lot going on. I know he just can’t really think about a lot of other things sometimes. So I don’t want to add anything on to his plate. And then when he gets home on the weekends, that’s our family time and I don’t want to further stress him out or ruin those happy memories that we’re making by bringing up all these issues in the business and we definitely struggled with this and like we talked about, we have those ups and downs and this is definitely one of those things that brings us down is when we lose our communication and we don’t talk about these issues because on my end I don’t want to keep stressing him out. So one of the things that we have done to solve this problem is deciding what our priority issues and what are things that can wait?

20.00

Ariana: So we use a tool called Evernote. It’s a great notebook tool.

Tom: If you haven’t used Evernote, you need to go check it out.

Ariana: Yeah I didn’t know what it was until Tom started using it and showed me and I was like oh, this is really kind of a cool tool. So now we use Evernote and we have a shared account so that we can see all the notebooks.  It’s kind of like a virtual notebook. You can have notes in there. You can share your notes. You can have specific notebooks so that you can organize everything and we have made a notebook for each business and then we have a note in each of those notebooks for weekly issues or weekly to-do and that way when things come up, I can kind of just jot stuff down in each notebook based on which business it’s about and if it’s not something that’s super-urgent for me to mention to Tom, it’s just something we need to talk about at some point that weekend when he gets home, then we just leave it there. And then if there’s something that’s super urgent that I need help from him, I go ahead and contact him whether it’s by email or we have a new tool we’re using, we’ll talk about in another show called Slack.

21.00

Tom: We love Slack. So Evernote and Slack. If you don’t use those tools, go and check them out.

Ariana: Yeah, we do have a podcast coming up about the twelve most important tools we use or something like that.

Tom: Yeah they’re both on there.

Ariana: Yeah, so we’ve decided that even though we might stress Tom out or it might stress me out, the most important thing is to keep those lines of communication open, make sure that we’re talking about this stuff, so that it doesn’t all come to a head at some point and you know, Tom absolutely hates when he comes home to find this huge issue with one of the businesses that I just didn’t want to bring it up because I didn’t want to worry him but me not bringing it up then made it worse because we waited and we didn’t talk about it and we didn’t talk it out and find a solution.

Tom: Yeah and I think what this comes back to is what we term “working agreements”. So how are we going to operate together? How are we going to talk through the business stuff? A big realization for us over the last year has probably been the goal planning and the synchronization and the communication. So, so many of things have come back to that weekly meeting we have.

22.00

Tom: And our working agreements are these things we need to talk about right away so we’re going to throw them on the appropriate channel and Slack and expect a response. So these other things aren’t things we’ve got to worry about right away but we know we’re going to catch them at least once a week so we put those in Evernote and now we’re talking about those on Friday. So we understand together, hey Ariana, what information do you want to have on a daily basis and what do you need to have weekly from me and vice versa? What issues do I need to hear about daily and what things can we talk about when we get to that weekly sync? So I think the key takeaway for anyone listening to this is sit down and really talk about based on your role and based on what you’re doing in the business, how do you have to communicate and how do you need to get information and more importantly, what information do you not need to get that may just cause additional stress?

23.00

Tom: Alright, my next one which is number seven is not focusing too much on the end. Okay the next challenge which is seven is not focusing too much on the end. So Ariana talked about it earlier. I am highly motivated and one of the things that we always tell people when they’re going to start anything and especially a business, is to figure out your why, and for me, one of the reasons that I’m highly motivated is because I have a very strong why and I use it every day to drive what I do. So my why is not wanting to have to have someone else choose what I have to do but I want to have those options. So whether that’s coaching our kid’s soccer, whether that’s taking them to school, whether that’s sporadically going on vacation, I want to have that flexibility and I have those life experiences but far too often what happens to me is I let my why be so strong and I want it now that I focus 100% on getting our businesses to that point that I forget or I miss out some of the life experiences as we go.

24.00

Tom: So Ariana has been phenomenal. Sometimes I don’t like to hear it but I need to hear it in calling out when I’m spending too much time on the business and not spending enough time either with her or with the kids or just even sometimes for myself to take time away. So I’m going to keep tying this back but a lot of these concepts are tied together and help each other out so now that we have our weekly meeting and now that we have the calendar, we can look at what are we doing in making sure that we plan first those important things and then let us fill in and the business time after so that we make sure that we’re not missing out on the life experiences and the short term stuff because we’re focused on the long term..

Ariana: Yeah, my next challenge number eight, not getting enough done as we think we should. This was another one, kind of ties back to Tom’s challenge about me not realizing my potential.

25.00

Ariana: I was having a rough time thinking. Every week I was down because I felt I never got anything done. I was like oh, I didn’t get a lot done this week or oh, I had all these things in my to do list and I feel like I barely got to any of them. And Tom was essential in helping me with that and he said one of the things that I do for myself is to put all of my activities that I want to get done on a to-do list and then I check them off as I get them done. So even if it’s the most mundane of tasks, you list it out. Laundry…I want to mow the lawn, I want to get this done for the business, list that out, and then at the end of the day, check off what you got done and that will help you mentally see, okay I don’t feel like I got as much done but when I look at the list, I actually did quite a bit for that day. So that’s helped me feel a lot better about that issue. And then also setting weekly task goals, just so that you have kind of an end-result down, okay I want to get these things done this week. Which thing should I put on which day, where does it make the most sense for me to try and do these things?

26.00

Ariana: Instead of trying to do five million things at the same time, you’re not going to get all of them done. Pick a day and concentrate on just that task for the day. And one of the ways that he helped me figure that out was to go through and detail my daily activities to how much I did every day so that I wasn’t feeling quite so down. And I mean I did a lot more than I thought I did.

Tom: And that works daily, weekly, monthly, yearly, so overtime we do one of those planning meetings or checkpoints whether it’s weekly or every three months or every year, it’s important to make sure that we’re not just looking at what are our goals going forward, but reviewing the past time period and saying what did we actually accomplish during this time, and if we didn’t accomplish some of the stuff that we wanted to, why didn’t we, and what can we learn from that so that we can adjust and make sure that the next time period we actually have everything done? So number nine is not being aligned on our goals. And once again, we’ve talked about goal planning a couple times so I’m not going to spend a ton of time on this. But when you don’t talk about your goals together and when you don’t write them down and create a plan to get there, you’re going to bounce around to a whole bunch of things that don’t ultimately tie back to that goal.

27.00

Tom: And you know, being the serial entrepreneur, and being the one that is all over the place, this happened to me a lot and Ariana had to pull me back. And the other piece is we both ultimately want the same thing but how we go about getting there I think is different between how Ariana looks at it and how I look at it. So there’s a great quote that I heard years ago and I love and it’s entrepreneurship is living a few years of your life like most people won’t so that you can spend the rest of your life living like most people can’t. And what that said to me was, I’m really going to hustle. We’re going to do these things now so that later on, we can live the life that other people can’t because they have to worry about bringing their income in. So that’s the way I look at this and I think Ariana, I think you generally have a similar idea but you want to make sure and it’s great that you do, that we tie in the life experiences along the way and not just get to focused on business.

28.00

Ariana: We don’t want to miss out on the little things. So, the last challenge, my challenge number ten, is a tough one, how do you talk over individual challenges that you may have without harbouring resentment or jealousy? So how do you talk about all your struggles with your spouse without making them resent you for the things that they miss out or can’t do? A tough one for me because I am the parent who gets to stay home with the kids, I am the parent who gets to see all the little moments and be here during the week, and I’ve got the funny stories, and I want to share all those moments with Tom, but I know that it kind of hurts him because he’s away and doesn’t get to see those things and share those moments so how do I share those fun experiences, how do I share my challenges when I’ve had a tough day when the kids are being ridiculous and I just can’t take it anymore and I need to vent? It’s really tough to do that when you don’t want to make your partner or your spouse feel bad.

29.00

Ariana: So obviously this is a challenge that you’ll probably continually come back to over the years and it’s a challenge that a lot of other people have and some of the solutions that we’ve come up with are finding other people to share those challenges with. I mean we do like to communicate and share everything with each other, but sometimes it’s better to hold off and share some of those feelings with other people so that you’re not intentionally causing harm to your spouse. Tom has a mastermind group that he meets with every Friday. It’s a business-entrepreneurial type mastermind group but it’s still somewhere that he could share some of his challenges with people that are likeminded. And then he’s mentioned a couple times, that I should find a spouse support group, maybe some other spouses that are dealing with entrepreneurial partner that they want to talk all their problems and have a venting session.

30.00

Ariana: And say oh man, he wants me to add this on to my schedule and he’s making me add this new task and he wants to start this new business and having friends or other people that you can talk about and have that support. Another thing we’ve tried to do is make specific time to talk to each other about this stuff so that we can prepare mentally. It is good to let each other know what feelings you’re having and to hash that out every once in a while, but you don’t want to do it when you’re in an emotional state because you might say things you regret, you might make your spouse feel bad by accident because you didn’t word things correctly so we like to make that time, talk about it so that we each take, you know, let me sit down for an hour and really think about how I’m feeling and me personally, I like to write my feelings down and just kind of re-read them and make sure that’s really how I feel and instead of it being aimed at your spouse, then you’re just kind of reaching out and saying this is how I feel, none of that is aimed at you.

31.00

Ariana: I’m not blaming you for any of this, but you know I want you to know what I’m feeling so that we can kind of figure out a solution and do it together.

Tom: Yeah and I think this is an important one that people miss a lot. So for example, Ariana might be home, she might be doing some work and she has the kids and she might have a really tough day and now if I’m working and I have a really tough day, and I come home and we both just want to vent but we both had tough days, that’s the absolute worst time for us to try to vent because neither of us is going to listen and it’s not productive. But going back to those working agreements, if you guys can figure out together, when that day happens, how do we best deal with it? So it might well, we’re going to tell each other that we had the tough day and we want to chat, and we’re going to say let’s both agree what time we’re going to chat. So for us sometimes it’s after the kids have gone to bed, you know we’re lying in bed before we go to bed and now it’s the end of the day and we can kind of relax and talk about that stuff. So that may not work for everybody but the key thing is figure out how you can have those conversations and when you can have those conversations so they can be productive.

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Ariana: And one last idea is a lot of people wait until they have a problem to seek help for that problem, but I would suggest being proactive and maybe seeking out a couple’s therapist or just somebody that you both can talk to that’s unbiased and talk about your issues and come up with some solutions because you really don’t want to wait until things get so bad that you need to have that. That’s something that everyone could probably benefit from anyways so it’s something good to think about and we are actually searching for one in our area as well just so that we can whether you do it monthly or quarterly, or whatever, just to have that time to come together with somebody, talk about any issues you might be having, any personal issues you might be having, and just have that person kind of weigh in and help find those solutions.

Tom: And now I just want to jump in quick here because there’s a stigma about talking to a therapist or going to marriage counselling and you know it’s funny because to be the best, people seek out coaches, so if you want to be the best football player, you’re going to go seek out a coach right?

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Tom: If you want to be a great entrepreneur, you going to go and find a mentor or coach or a community that’s going to help you, so it’s so funny that we all see this stigma about well, I’m not going to go talk to a therapist or go talk to somebody about my marriage because I can do it on my own.

Ariana: I don’t have a problem.

Tom: Yeah, and it’s sad that so many of us think about it that way and the way that we think about it and why we were going out, like you know we have common problems that everyone has but the reason we want to go and have a therapist is to have a professional who has worked with a ton of people that can help us see the things that we’re not seeing and instead of us spending a long time trying to figure it out, why not get the fast solution of being able to have someone help us get there? And you know, we do the same thing in business. It could take us a long time to figure things out on our own, so what we do is we go and find the experts, we go and find the people who are doing what we want to do and we get close to them and we pay them to help us. So we’re just suggesting doing the same thing in your relationship to help make that easier and faster.

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Ariana: Yeah so that brings us to our tip of the week, keeping a marriage healthy is hard enough on its own, we all know that. If you’re going to add a business into it, make that effort to keep those lines of communication open. Continually remind yourselves; okay we’ve got to talk. It’s a project that we all get caught up in our own heads all the time and that should be a project that we keep doing is remembering to talk to each other, remembering to let your partner in, you know, don’t close everyone out. It’s something that you have to do together.

Tom: Yep, and I know we went a little bit long on the show this week but this is such a critical thing. I mean even if you’re not in business, just to keep your relationship healthy. So with this, we actually put together a quick guide that summarizes some of the key points here on if you’re going to start a business, how we’ve actually experienced being able to get on board and get your partner on board I should say, basically the opposite of everything I tried to do to get Ariana on board with our business.

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Tom: So to find that download and more, you can check out the show always at serialstartups.co/show5. And with that, that’s our show for the week and we’ll see you guys next time.

Ariana: Thanks for listening. Like our podcast? We’d love for you to leave us a review on iTunes. Know someone who’s thinking about starting their own business? Please share this with them so we can help them with their entrepreneurial path. Are you looking to start a business but need a little more guidance or support to really get it going? If so, then we invite you to join our Start-ups Academy where we have created a ton of resources and step by step guides to help you determine which business you should start with, how to launch it quickly, how to grow it to being profitable and automated so that you get your time back.

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