My doctor is 70 years old and has a very successful and financially lucrative practice. The last time I spoke with him, he said, “I have a question for you. I know what kind of work you do and that you deal with people’s problems.” He continued, “I have something on my mind that I want to ask you.”
I said tell me more. He explained that, despite his successful career, he had one major regret. “My one regret is that I didn’t spend more time with my children while they were growing up. Instead I put all my time and energy into my career. I missed their childhood. Now that they are older, I don’t have a very good relationship with them because I really never spent a lot of time with them.”
I understand that with any working parent, there is always a push-pull; that trade-off between earning a living and managing time so that you don’t miss your kids growing up. You’re trying to be there for them and build this incredible relationship, while still investing in your job and building your career.
In my family, that balance was something that I too, as a parent, found very challenging. When I was younger and my kids were growing up, I spent time with them in favor of working overtime on my job. Fortunately, I had a choice. Now, I look back on the time I spent with them and realize I absolutely made the right decision. Unfortunately, not everybody has that option.
Don’t make the same mistake that my doctor did. If there is any way that you can spend more time with your kids while they’re growing up, do it! I have never met a parent that regretted not spending more time at work. By the time you realize that, it’s often too late.
Don’t miss the opportunity to watch your kids grow up. Spend as much time with them as you can. You won’t regret it!