THE BALANCE PROJECT | No. 126: Ria Ruthsatz, Film Producer

Welcome to THE BALANCE PROJECT: a series of relevant and refreshingly candid interviews featuring inspiring and accomplished women talking about balance. I’ve always been curious about how women I admire manage the tragically glorified “doing it all” craze. So I asked them. As I suspected, no one really does “it all.” Everyone’s making sacrifices somewhere. And that should make us all feel a little better. I hope the conversation will be steered toward that reality rather than toward the flawed and dangerous assumption that we should try—or even want to try—to perfectly do “it all.”

By the way, looking for THE BALANCE PROJECT novel that was inspired by these interviews? It’s here.

No. 126: Ria Ruthsatz, Film Producer

Age: 28
Where I live:
 St. Louis, MO
Job: Film Producer

riaruthsatzHave you changed jobs or adjusted anything in your career to have more balance?
I initially sought out a career with opportunities to travel, but after we got married my husband’s filmmaking started taking him all over the world. Our schedules were already limiting our time together, and I could see we were about to become the couple who passes each other at the airport more often than at home. I had to ask myself if that was worth it. The truth was I didn’t love what I did, but I loved him, so I took a huge leap of faith and learned everything I could about his business—and I quit my job.

It felt like we got to know each other all over again, and now we push each other to do our best work. It’s better and more fulfilling than I could have ever imagined and has allowed us to grow our business far beyond what would have been possible otherwise.

Do you think having “it all” is realistic or overrated and why?
“All” can be so many different things to so many people. I’m fortunate to have everything I need. I get to work alongside my husband every day, at a job I love, and I know that my work is impacting people’s lives for the better. I couldn’t ask for more.

What part of “balance” can you just not seem to figure out?
As an entrepreneur, and especially because I work with my husband, it can be really difficult to differentiate between work life and home life. I get really into my work, and can have a really hard time “clocking out.” I’ll sit down to quickly review a budget proposal at 5pm and look up to realize that it’s 2 am!

What part of “balance” are you getting better at?
In the early days, I was always connected. I wanted to answer whenever the client called, emailed, or texted—day or night. I’ve since learned to designate some time as just plain “off.” I was worried it would impact our business, but in fact it’s allowed me to stay fresh and be more creative and engaged when I am working!

What was the best advice you ever heard on balance? 
I once worked for a company that claimed to believe in work-life balance, and I remember another employee saying there was no such thing. You can’t have 50% life and 50% work—it’s all your life. You can never balance the two because your life doesn’t stop when you get to work. That really changed how I thought about my career, and I began focusing on what I wanted out of my life and how my work might fit into that.

If you had one extra hour in each day and you couldn’t work or be with your family, how would you spend that hour?
I would spend it in the air! I take aerial silks classes, and it still amazes me that I’m strong enough to climb 20 or 30 feet and then perform a sequence of wraps and drops. It’s incredibly empowering, and a great workout.

What do you wish you’d known when you were 20?
Everything happens for a reason. I wouldn’t change a thing about my 20s, because they got me where I am today.

What do you hope to know by time you’re 60?
The joys of a successful business, a growing family, and knowing that I’ve created films that have changed people’s lives.

What part of your home life do you wish you could outsource?
Unpacking! We travel a lot, and when I get home the last thing I want to do is unpack the suitcases!

Whose job do you wish you had?
I can’t think of anything better than my own! Things are always changing and evolving. From the clients we serve, to the technology we use, to the ideas and concepts that bring the films to life—it keeps me on my toes and I love that.

Whose job are you glad you don’t have?
I could never do the same thing every day, but I’m a fast learner and I think I could make the best out of just about any job that had a little variety.

Favorite books?
I love anything by P.G. Wodehouse or Daphne Du Maurier.

What are you reading right now?
Unmarketing by Scott Stratten.

Biggest vices…
Activity? Netflix.
Food?
 Coffee & pizza—but never at the same time!
Website? 
Facebook.

How many hours do you generally sleep at night during the week?
6-8.

What do you read every morning?
Facebook. I love to spend the first 20 minutes of the morning connecting with friends.

Complete the following sentences:
I think I: am headed in the right direction.
I wish I: had 4 more hours in each day.

Do you have a personal motto or favorite saying?
“If you are what you should be, you will set the whole world on fire.” —St. Catherine of Siena

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tree94x5About Ria:
JS_BusinessCard_Front_FINAL
Ria develops creative concepts, plans, and coordinates the elements of pre and post-production at Tree9 Films. She has over 10 years experience in business management and marketing and has produced and directed films for individuals and companies both locally and around the world.

Find out more about Ria:
www.tree9.com
Linkedin: Ria Ruthsatz
Facebook: Tree9 Films
Twitter: @tree9films
Instagram: tree9films
Pinterest: Tree9 Films

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WANT TO READ MORE ABOUT WORK-LIFE BALANCE? CHECK OUT MY NOVEL THE BALANCE PROJECT!

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