The Talk: Keeping Harmony Between Your Online Business and Relationship

Business and relationship

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This is a guest post by Neal of

If you are building an online business while living with someone in a relationship, or have been married for a certain amount of time, sooner or later you will end up having “the talk.” It may manifest itself in a variety of different forms but usually it has the same humble beginnings.

You are having a nice day or evening, the mood is calm and stress free. And then seemingly out of nowhere you hear “We need to talk about something.” The phrase may be a little different for you, but the connotations are always the same. The phrase I heard was “Honey, I would like to talk with you about something.” That is normally the ice breaker, unfortunately for some relationships it may also be a deal breaker as well.

What then follows is most often a long and drawn out conversation about the direction your life is taking, and how much “time you are wasting with this making money online thing.” It can get heated at times, there could be some yelling, but eventually saner minds prevail and the end result is most often a compromise of some sort. Or in the worst of cases an agreement to give up is submitted to your partner slash chairman of the international association of dream killers.

Finding Common Ground

In all seriousness though, “the talk” can be one of the most discouraging or inspiring obstacles you may ever have to encounter while building your online business. If you are the type that is easily discouraged, read on. The light at the end of the tunnel is not a train coming to crush your dreams; it is beacon of hope guiding you towards the land of prosperity.

Despite the talk, there are several things you can do to pick up, dust off and keep striving towards the promise land as long as you do not give up. Here are a few things that I have done to help keep harmony between my online business and relationship.

  • Treat Your Online Business like a Real Job

Treating Your Online Business like Real job may seem like a sort of trendy thing to say. But in its application, it can help win over the psychological support of your other half great deal. One of the simplest ways to accomplish this is to set a time that you are “going to work” on your business, and then when the time comes “get ready and go to work.”

Applying this to your business means emulating the behaviors of your previous employment. For example in my previous employment I would waking up, put on my uniform, and go to work. This went on for several years and this is the behavior that my wife associated with me “working.”

So when it came to running my own business, all she could see was me sitting in front of the computer detached from our family lounging in my house slippers perusing the internet. It was not until I started to wake up and “get ready for work” dressing in my collard shirt and pants that she began to take me seriously. Even going so far as to help ensure that our children were not “bothering Daddy while he is working” for one or two hours in the day.

  • Keep Family First While Staying Focused

No matter how tempting it may be to keep writing that article you just know is going viral, or submitting just one more forum post, or tweaking your landing page just a few more pixels. Discipline yourself to pull away within thirty seconds or less for your family if need be. As impossible as this may sound, especially if you have young ones, this can really build a lot of support from your partner in the long run.

In every day family life, things can get hectic and on occasion children for whatever reason do have psychotic episodes (well at least mine do). When things of this nature happen while we are working on our business, it can mean a lot to our partner to save all our work and help make a bottle, change a diaper and or do whatever may be necessary to help stabilize the situation.

  • Speak in Weekly or Monthly Gains Instead of Long Term Goals

If you are just starting out, this may be one of the most difficult things to do. You may not have made any sales or you may still be researching your niche or any variety of things be distracting you in the beginning. As a result, highlighting small gains with you partner may be more reassuring approach than trying to convince them that you will be paying all the bills with your online business within three years.

One thing I have done is immediately create a Google Adsense account. Even if I only made a dollar or two a week, I would communicate that to my spouse reminding her that I am steadily making progress although in very tiny steps.

  • Involve Your Family and Partner Whenever Possible

This part is where being really creative is a must. You may have a niche that is completely unrelated to anything you can do with your family. If that is the case, it is a good idea to think outside of the box with your niche, and in some way shape or form involve your partner and family.

For example, I had a niche I was focusing on that had nothing to do with family and fun in any way. In fact, it was entirely based on the benefits of getting an education online. To involve my family, I asked my spouse if I could interview her about it. Reluctantly she agreed, and in turn produced some quality content. I then asked her if I could take a few pictures of her studying online while we were at the park, zoo, or beach to which she agreed.

Although she did not want to show her face, eventually we made a fun thing about it even getting our children involved. The end product was great content, with pictures of what looked like a mother studying online while her children looked on, all at an angle that didn’t show their faces. It was great.

To this day, whenever I have my camera on my wife and children are enthusiastic about taking some shots and doing some fun things with me.

Never Losing Sight of the Dream

In all honesty, if you have been attempting to build your business for six month or a year, there is a possibility that your other half may not initially be receptive to any of your efforts at all. Yet, as with each task you must accomplish daily, perseverance and determination is the key.

Please be advised though, the last thing you need to do is highlight the contrasts between internet gaming and trying to make a living online. The words may be misinterpreted into you wanting to make a living as a professional gamer on the internet. Take it from me that did not sit well with my spouse at all.

Some of the greatest discoveries ever made were by people who faced enormous opposition in their lifetime. I am personally inspired by one man who was not able to speak until the age of four, or read until he was seven or eight years old. Growing up in school, his teachers thought he was slower than the other children and he was even expelled.

To this day, in some way shape or form we are all affected by the work of this man. His name was Alert Einstein. When I am facing opposition or my spouse just wants to have a talk with me, I am reminded of the many before me who never lost sight of their dreams.

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  1. Colin says

    There are some good ideas in this article but your statements about Einstein are wrong. Einstein was never expelled and it’s a myth that he was a slow child. His gift for science and physics was recognised early and he was admitted into a somewhat exclusive school where he received excellent grades.

    Sure, be inspired by Einstein .. but for who he really was not some hocus “man against the world” poster child.

    • says

      @Colin … When I initially read your comment, I almost instinctively reached for my books, and started to think of all the websites I could cite to support my post.

      Then I thought about it for a second and had to look over in the other room to see if it was my wife commenting to distract me from my ultimate objective of making money online. Once I realized it wasn’t my wife suddenly my reply became crystal clear.

      Yes there are many different historical factoids about Einstein. But rather than give me “the talk” about it and dispute it here, how about providing me with some additional ideas for keeping harmony between your online business and relationship?

      Besides, isn’t being distracted by things unrelated to our business what tends to hold us back rather than motivate us anyhow?

  2. says

    Well, Moe among your many talents, networking happens to be on the list – getting a “fan” (ha!) to write an article for you.

    This is a timely piece for myself as I am dreading the day when my “partner” (my dad), pulls the rug out on me and cuts the cord. We are living under the same roof at the moment and we keep our distance. Communicating typically involves a grunt here or a hand motion there. The problem my old man has is he does not consider internet marketing as something real and because of his stubborn, antiquated ways he hasn’t once showed any interest in it. This morning I overheard him on the phone, talking with a friend and the person on the other end asked him if I had a job and he says with an absolute tone “no” and abruptly ended that line of questioning.

    As you say, Neal, I will never lose sight of the dream and keep hammering forward despite my utter lack of support from the old curmudgeon. And maybe, just maybe he will raise an eyebrow once the money starts to flow.

    Take it easy, Alwyn

    • says

      @Alwyn…I dont mean for this to sound like a plug but it’s true, you can always count on everyone in the NicheSherpa forum to have your back. I still use that timing tip you gave me a while ago to this very day!

  3. Moe says

    Good one, Alwyn! I often tell aspirational newbies that to succeed in this business you either have to be too stubborn or too stupid to quit.

    Not sure which category I fall into 😉


  4. says

    Well each to their own!
    I don’t see the relevance of Einstein, it’s more about the relationship you have with your ‘loving spouse’ who’s getting increasingly worried about how the hell you are going to pay the household bills!
    Like” When are you going to bring some money in? – you spend hours every day on your computer, all the hours of the day and night, and still no money!”
    We’ve all been there, it’s tough…………….
    Then you check your Clickbank account, raise your eyebrows, scream “Eurekaaaaaaaaaaaaa”! …… You’ve made your first sale online.
    Then, a few days later, you’ve made more sales.
    My wife said she was proud of me ( but it is very hard to get going).
    I don’t recommend you delude yourself by dressing in your previous work clothes in front of your computer, it’s a question of mind, I couldn’t wait to hang up my suits.
    P.S. Moe ” I often tell aspirational newbies that to succeed in this business you either have to be too stubborn or too stupid to quit”………….. Hey Moe, there’s two of us then!

  5. says

    I agree Graham, each to their own.

    I guess I went way out on a limb trying to highlight the contrast between being the type of person who is initially ostracized for believing in the theory of making money with the intangible, and a person who wasn’t initially accepted by the scientific community.

    But I can definitely can relate to that eureka moment.

    Nothing like having a check manifesting itself out of the curving fiber optic light waves straight in to your mail box.

    (Pun intended, I can’t seem to help myself at this point).

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