Whether you’re the father or a child or the founder of a company, you have only three resources that matter. Make the most of them.
In our desire to create, there is a great deal of energy transference, from our life to the life of our creation. The journey we make from growing an idea into maturity is strikingly similar to that of raising a child, where time, energy, and money each play a role.
At the core, these parallel journeys require time. Time is the most fundamental and strongest correlate to the successful upbringing of a start-up, or a child; those who spend more time are more likely to cultivate something or someone into a strong and capable being.
Then there are money and energy, the former– direct and visible– the latter– ever so subtle. Both are powerful variables that impact both the parenting journey and the entrepreneurial journey. Money can help ease the growing pains that a start-up or a child may experience; but too much money, and the start-up may go awry, just as the child become lost to the visceral experiences of living. Money can ease the time we spend nurturing our creation, but it also has the power to displace us.
Similarly, energy is also a modifier of our time spent, as it can help us or hurt us. The energy we spend during our time building a business or parenting a child can be used creatively or destructively, efficiently or uselessly, naturally or forcefullly. Unlike money, energy is a modifier intrinsic to our being (read: diet, exercise, sleep).
An ability to summon the forceful type of energy is arguably the most necessary trait for a successful entrepreneur (+1 for Gary Vaynerchuk’s “hustle” school of thought). The caveat for the hustlers out there is that forcing energy may give you more time to work, or more money to work with, but it’s ultimately a detriment to itself: more forced energy may mean less efficient and less creative output, or worse, useless and destructive output.
There’s a pernicious culture in the start-up world of sacrificing one’s own energy so as to make more time to grow the start-up, but is the quality of work and nurture the same? You’ll always make time for your child’s birthday, but is it the same for the child if you’re at your best as when you’re forcefully present?
There are ways to create time without sacrificing energy. Calling an Uber to get places or ordering delivery for lunch takes back time. There are also ways to create energy without sacrificing time, like keeping a healthy diet and exercising to boost metabolism. We’ve even created a new way to optimize sleep: a new device on Kickstarter, Chrona, can help boost your deep sleep using sound, which enhances the quality of rest, giving you more energy for the same amount of time spent in bed.
Diet, exercise, and sleep; Time, energy, and money; They pillars of the same pyramid whether you’re the father of a child or the founder or a company, or both: stealing from one to repair the other is a zero sum at best.