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Challenge: Back to School 2021

Balancing School + Running A Biz

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Heading back to school hits different when you’re a teen who runs your own business.

The usual free hours spent coming up with designs or creating new products are now filled with homework, after-school activities, and …. did I mention homework?

Since I work with teen entrepreneurs I know many of them are struggling with the back-to-school craziness. So, I decided to reach out to teen entrepreneurs through @dowitpodcast and ask them for tips on how they plan to keep their business going while navigating school.

Just Say “No.”

Sydney Day, the founder of @SydneyDayDesign, has learned how to prioritize. Everything can’t be “super important” some things need to take a backseat. Sydney has learned how to say “no”, especially when the demands are impacting her health. She knows it could disappoint people, but over the years she’s learned that taking care of herself is the number one priority. Anna, who runs @soaring.together, agrees, “Know your priorities. Does it go family, school, business, friends, sports, and then hobbies?” Anna finds that knowing the order helps her when it comes to making decisions. She also believes that “when you try to do everything, you do nothing well.” This is why sometimes she lets go of activities in order to rest and avoid burnout.

I’d also add that it’s 100% normal for the order to shift depending on what’s happening in your life. Are you coming up on finals? Maybe school slides into 1st place for a couple of weeks. Allow things to shift as the demands on your time change.


Write It Down.

Almost every submission from teen entrepreneurs mentioned writing down your schedule in a planner. Julia Rad, founder of @the_rad_bakery shared, “I have a space to write down everything I need to get done. I just can’t count on me remembering everything.” The founder of @shopdeedles, Caroline, added, “Organization is key to my daily routine and helps keep me successful in my business and academics.”

There are so many great planners out there that are created by teen entrepreneurs. This means you can set yourself up for success and support a fellow teen entrepreneur! Caroline recommends @onetidyday for cute planers.

Keep The Goal(s) In Mind.

Avery, the founder of @floweryshoredesigns, mentioned that she “…utilizes all my free time, and I plan and work ahead. Most importantly I remember my goals.”

I agree with her!

It’s so important to keep in mind your “why”. Inevitably there are going to be times when things feel overwhelming. In those moments it’s important to remind yourself why you are building this business. Is it to raise a certain amount of money? Is it to provide yourself a creative outlet? Is it because you just love being an entrepreneur?

Consider writing down your “why” on a sticky note and put it in a place where you can easily reference it if you’re feeling stuck.

Find Your Community.

This wasn’t mentioned in any submission, but I think it’s super important to surround yourself with like-minded people who share your values and priorities. If you’re a teen entrepreneur, join communities where other teen entrepreneurs are supporting one another. You don’t have to navigate school and running a business alone. Find a community that cheers you on and where you can cheer on others. Oftentimes competition is the focus at school, but when it comes to building a successful business, community and collaboration are key.

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