By Emily LaDrig

While we are all ramping up to hyperspeed for the holidays, you might feel pulled in more directions than ever, especially as an entrepreneur.

I came across an interesting thought from Randi Zuckerberg, sister of Mark Zuckerberg, that I thought really rang true, especially during this time of year.

She calls it “The Entrepreneur’s Dilemma” which essentially comes down to:

  • Maintaining friendships.
  • Building a great company.
  • Spending time w/family.
  • Staying fit.
  • Getting sleep.

Now: PICK 3!

Yep, just three out of those five are manageable at once according to The Entrepreneur's Dilemma.

So if you want to spend time with fam, sleep and stay fit, your company and your friends will slide a little.

Or if you want to build a great company, spend time with fam and see friends, then you won’t get as much sleep or work out time in.

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It feels really on point and reminds me of how people also say, “You CAN have it all, just not all at once!”


What do you think about Randi’s “dilemma”? Do you relate to it? If you could only pick three, which would it be?

It's so interesting because there are many famous founders who agree with this thinking, claiming that it’s hard to give a startup everything it needs when you aren’t giving it your total focus.

very cute smiling women drinking a coffee sitting inside in cafe restaurantOf course, giving your business or startup 100% laser focus can't NOT result in an imbalance in other areas of your life.

Then there are also some entrepreneurs like Basecamp co-founder and CTO David Heinemeier Hansson, who has publicly declared that he can get all the work required for his start-up to succeed done in a moderate 40 hours a week.

So what do YOU think? Can you find balance as a small business owner or entrepreneur? Or do you understand that imbalance is part of the rocket-ride you signed up for?


Emily LaDrig is the Chief Execution Officer at Excelerate America, the fun, smart services for businesses looking to level up. Let her know what you think of the Entrepreneur's Dilemma. Reach out to Emily at

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