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Top tips for surviving and loving life when your partner is a start-up guy/girl....
by Startacus Admin
As Emily Quinton explains on her wonderful blog - TheStartup Wife - "We live the start-up life. The entreprenuerial life. He's the part that goes out and makes fabulous things happen. I am the part that stays at home and keeps it all together. It's not easy." So Startacus was keen to get Emily's opinions on how to survive and love life when your partner is a start-up guy or girl...
I have been in a relationship with a start-up guy for nearly 8 years, we have three young children (5, 3 and 1) and currently live just outside London. During these 8 years there have been hundreds of ideas, many start-ups, some highs and some lows, some wins and some failures. Together we have taken huge risks, we have been through some very difficult, tough and overwhelming times but we have also had many highs and many adventures.
Over the years I have got better at being a ‘start-up wife’ and although I’m certainly still learning so much as we go here are my top ten strategies for a building and maintaining a happy and strong relationship with a start-upper.
This one is crucial! You have to learn to be very patient and understand that sometimes it will feel like the start-up is everything and you have been forgotten. There will also be times when dates, cash-flow, launches etc. change and things you may have planned might have to change to accommodate this. A start-up, by its' very nature, is all consuming. Sometimes (not always) you have to accept that is the way things are for the moment and be patient.
Very much linked to being patient is being independent. Having your own interests, work, friends etc. make the 80 hour working weeks more manageable. It is very likely that some weeks you may hardly see your partner. Don’t sit at home moping about this. Understand that’s how it is for now and use your time to do good things for you. This will be a good thing for both of you.
Trust in your partner's ideas and abilities. Yes, there may be failures along the way but that’s all part of the start-up process. If you believe in your partner then trust them. This doesn’t mean you can’t offer advice if you think they need to change something or approach something differently. But to have an underlying trust in what they are doing is important.
Be open and free
Be open to change and create a sense of freedom in the way that you live. This is something I have been working on since we left our home in Birmingham and moved down to London for a start-up. I used to find it really hard to not know what would be around the corner, where we might be in the country (the world!) or where we might be living. I’ve always needed to know what’s next and needed to feel settled. However, as I’ve got used to start-up life I’ve started to be able to free more open and free. Open to change and free to change. Whatever that change may be. If you can be stable and secure in your family and/or relationship, then I think this really helps in managing start-up life.