As something of a workaholic, I can attest to the fact that owning and operating your own
business can become all-consuming. You will have a lot of demands placed on you from every direction. Combine this with enthusiasm and passion for what you are doing, and suddenly your life will be filled with just one thing--your business.

I have used every excuse known to mankind when trying to justify why I have to spend yet another weekend in the office and not with my family or friends. After a while the phone stops ringing and often relationships break down.

Running a successful business is, without a doubt, one of life's greatest challenges. There are many benefits and many pitfalls, and maintaining a balance between them is essential to long-term success. Many of my business friends complain that they no longer have the time to do the things they enjoy because they are always working. If you are in this situation, you really need to ask yourself: is it all worth it?

I strongly recommend that you maintain interests outside of your business. I wrote up a list of the things I love to do when I have free time. Next to each of the items I noted when I did it last. My list included things like fishing, playing squash, camping, hiking, yoga, writing, reading, having dinner with friends and cooking and I hadn't done most of those things for months if not years. The results were a little scary and they motivated me to spend more time doing the things that I love, that are purely recreational.

The biggest bonus from doing the things you love is that you go back to your business feeling bright and fresh, and I honestly believe that you are much more productive and creative. If nothing else, you will be a much nicer person to be around. I also get some of my best business ideas while sitting in a boat waiting for a fish to tug on the end of my line.