Men to Watch – BALANCE: Running a Business & Growing a Family on the Saanich Peninsula

by Sean McNeill, McTavish Academy of Art | photo by Alysha McNeill – 

Ahh yes: “Balance.” This is a word that seems so simple in theory, yet achieving it is an ever-evolving work of art, and the journey is different for each and every one of us.

Approaching six years since opening the doors at McTavish Academy Of Art, my quest for balance has become increasingly important. The desire to build a thriving and diverse community space, while maintaining an all-important presence and engagement with my growing family, my friends and myself challenges me on a daily basis.

Of course this is all to be achieved while sneaking precious few moments of sleep and that elixir of coffee, both held at bay by a strategically-placed obstacle course of children’s toys. There is no easy answer, nor simple path, yet it is a beautiful mix of chaos, surprises, love and that inevitable daily question: “What should we make for dinner?”

In some form, we all have this internal dialogue of searching for balance. Although I’m sure it will be a book that takes my whole life to write, I am beginning to envision the many exciting chapters to come.

Growing in this environment, I am learning how to challenge my doubts, to analyze, and let go of failures. Skills have become strengths and my ego is being increasingly relegated to the back seat! Building a trusting team and honouring friends and family, who remain my strongest support network, continues to be paramount.

When running a business in a small community such as ours, we must also credit the incredible network of supportive individuals who care, and share, in our successes. It is truly an exciting, albeit daunting, path forward as we continue to find our place personally and professionally alongside our evolving community, and the world around us.

Congratulations to all the entrepreneurs and professionals who continue to hurdle mountains this year, and to the community that has shown its unfailing support. It will take all of us to continue to shape the Saanich Peninsula: to create a special place for everyone now, and for years to come.

A dream will inspire you to move forward; give you the impetus to reach beyond your day-to-day achievements to something greater. To realize your dream is the pinnacle, the moment at which your dream becomes a reality, and the work truly begins.

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