Hey, Johnny..."What are you going to do after work today? Oh, more work? Nice. Well, we're going to the bar."
That's always a great final conversation of the day when leaving work or when a buddy calls. The excitement of working on startup projects is definitely palpable, but let's face it, it's tempered by what it can do to your personal life. I hate to say it, but I drink less now than I used to. It's a problem.
In all seriousness though, coming up with a good balance can be hard, but it's definitely possible. One thing I do is keep a strict calendar. Well, as strict as it can be. I put things on my g-cal as soon as they come up, and I obsessively reference it when planning out my days. If I know I have something I want to do coming up, I will cram work into the days where nothing awesome is going on. I do a hell of a lot better job getting work done in advance now than I ever did in school. Maybe that's why my apps are a hell of a lot better than my grades.
One thing that I still try to keep religious - and by religious I mean in no way affiliated with any deity - is my Sundays. That is my day of rest. Don't get me wrong, I still go act like a badass commando in the woods on Sundays, but I don't usually do much work. I'll work Saturday afternoons and sometimes Fridays if nothing of import is going on, but Sundays are my days to myself. It's a good habit to keep. I'm not trying to kill myself here, and I want to live long enough to use all this money I'm trying to make.
Oh, yeah, one thing I really like to do on Sundays is go to a matinee movie. It's great. I went to the Avengers a couple of weeks ago and the 7 year old next to me shared his popcorn.
Everyone has a different life and job and expectations and relationships. It's impossible to read an article and say 'Okay, I'm going to balance my life like this and it will work great!' No, it never works that way. You just have to see what fits. And sometimes you have to look at the hard truths: you may not be able to swing work plus outside work. That takes a big decision. Do you quit your job and work for a startup or do you quit your startup and work on your career? That's a scary proposition for a lot of people, myself included.
I want to be a millionaire just like everyone else, but it's a long hard road to get there, and there's a lot of bumps and detours on the way. Cliches are fun.