When you look at successful people with kids—be they CEOs or athletes or artists—it can be easy to marvel: How do they do it? How do they get it all done? How do they get it all done and still stay in shape?
There is an answer, because it’s definitely not magic. The answer is that they have help. They have nannies and tutors and house managers. They have chiefs of staff. They have personal assistants. They have personal trainers. That’s how they get it all done. If you could afford it, you’d be just as efficient and seemingly carefree as them.
Now, the point of pointing this out is not to make you jealous or to point out the inequities of our society. In fact, it’s the opposite: It’s to nudge you into following in their footsteps. Of course, hiring a full-time staff is beyond most of our capabilities, but surely there are things you are doing that you don’t have to do, that you could afford to pay someone to do for you. And yet, you continue to do it…why? Because your dad changed the oil in his car? Because your mom always served home-cooked meals? Because you feel guilty outsourcing this or that?
C’mon. Forget the gender roles. Forget ‘the way things used to be.’ The way things used to be almost invariably involved parents spending way less time with their kids than we do now. Something has to give—and it shouldn’t be your sanity.
Take a minute today and calculate what an hour of your time is worth. Calculate how much better you’d be at your job (and perhaps be rewarded for it financially) if you had less menial chores in your life—if you never thought about taking out the garbage again. Or think about how much better a professional might do at doing your taxes…or managing your investments. Think about how much more present you could be for your kids if there was less on your plate. You don’t have to outsource everything, hire help for everything, but you also don’t have to do everything yourself either.
P.S. This was originally sent on June 11, 2021. Sign up today for the Daily Dad’s email and get our popular 11 page eBook, “20 Things Great Dads Do Everyday.”