You know that iconic opening scene in Breakfast at Tiffany’s? Where Audrey Hepburn is eating her pastry and drinking her coffee and daydreaming in the window of a jewelry store all the while Moon River faintly plays in the background. It's such a calm, thoughtful scene. Now imagine that right in the middle of her daydream John Wayne comes in driving cattle, yelling “We're burning daylight boys, head em' up, move em' out, and yippee yi ki yay!” Now imagine that in that moment the dreamer and the cowboy’s world collide and they fall madly in love.
This, in a nutshell, is my love story.
I am a dreamer, business owner and goal chaser. My husband is a realist, business owner, and goal chaser. My husband is a rodeo cowboy. I don’t even know how to ride a horse. I am all about social media and networking and he doesn’t even have a Facebook page. Can you really have balance in an entrepreneurial marriage of opposites?
The word “balance” is really overused these days.
I am not saying there are not those who have found the secret sauce to balance. What I’m saying is: it does not work in my marriage. For us, it's not figuring out how to balance it together because we cannot make our dreams balance. If we did, I don’t think either of our dreams and goals would be reached. It's about knowing when to be the person on the seesaw that's down pushing the other one up. It's about waiting for your turn to be up and for them to push you up to the top. That does not mean one of your goals has to be sacrificed in order for the other person to achieve their success.
So how do two people who both have a love for business and are two polar opposite dreams make it work?
If we’re at a rodeo, you can find me in the bleachers with my head down, looking at my iPad. I’m the one blogging away, working on my business, and pausing just long enough to cheer my husband on while he performs. After he’s done, you’ll find him behind the chutes promoting me and my business (to anyone who will listen).
Here is the see-saw method we use to make our dream making, goal chasing, entrepreneurial marriage not only achieve success, but thrive…
We call it GRIT!
[G]iving up is not an option.
This sounds like a simple enough motto. Many couples go into marriage assuming they will not give up on each other. But I am not talking about giving up on each other. I am talking about not giving up on the other person's dreams. It is easy to give up on someone else’s dreams when times get rough and their dreams affect your life. It is easy to say, “I give up” because this is not my dream. Persevering through the hard times for the benefit of achieving someone else's dreams will level up your own chances of being successful in achieving your goals.
Respect should be the foundation of all relationships. Sometimes, in the workplace it's hard to respect your co-workers. When the co-worker is your partner, it makes it even more difficult. We start putting expectations on the other to fulfill our own needs of accomplishment. We forget to give them the respect of going down this crazy road of business and life themselves. Often work and home life are separate and it's easy to leave difficulties at the office. But when they are one in the same, the boundaries are that much harder to set. RESPECT is key in surviving the ride.
Always. Always, stay true to yourself and your dreams. I have never had the dream to ride a horse and win gold buckles for myself. That is my husband’s dream. I think people get lost in the thought that to be successful as a couple you have to have the same dream. This is not true at all. You have to come together with a mutual understanding that while you want the end result to be success, you can achieve this in two different ways. Support and cheering on one another, helping the other one out with whatever you can does not mean putting your own dreams on the backburner. You can both achieve your individual goals working as a team.
Yes, I said Take. It is perceived as such a selfish word. Sometimes, however, it is the best thing we can do for another person. Take the burden of something off your partner's plate. For example, I feed and water the animals, including the horses, which is a JOB. I DO NOT ENJOY IT. But if I have a few extra moments in my morning, I’ll knock it out and take one thing off my husband’s to do list. Take time to step away from the daily hustle of goal chasing. When you are both passionate about what you do and achieving goals, it is really hard to get out of the zone, even for a brief moment. People always make jokes about co-workers being their “work” spouses. You would not actually date them, so leave that person at the office and take your spouse out. Don't talk shop...well at least not for the first fifteen minutes. Finally, take the wins together and take the losses together. You are in it to win it together.
We all have different dreams and aspirations. Sometimes we are lucky enough to find someone with the same drive and passion we have to achieve those goals. Sometimes they are the complete opposite of us and our dreams but we share the same GRIT it takes to not just balance the pursuit of goal chasing, but see-saw through it. Throw in some guts and red lipstick and you have the perfect combination to not only have a successful business but a thriving marriage - one that Audrey Hepburn and John Wayne would be proud to star in!