How To Balance Your Work Life With Your Relationships
A balance between your work and relationships is no easy matter. It’s not like we got a course in high school that teaches us how to maintain romance in our life, and it definitely isn’t a straightforward instruction manual you can follow along to. However, it CAN be done… it just might take a little more effort than you thought.
Have you ever come home after a long stressful day of work and follow those mundane routines before bed? You are not alone. I used to live at my job and spent little to no time with my significant other or any of my loved ones.
I would come home from working overtime, take a shower, and pass out. There would be a greeting, a kiss, and that was about it. In fact, it got to the point where my fiance would be asleep before I even got home or would be away for work, making our time together even smaller.
Balancing work and relationships can sometimes seem close to impossible when you are putting in 8-12 hours each day at a job.
Especially if we are coming home with the stresses of work still smeared all over our clothes and filling up our thoughts.
Don’t let your job take over your relationships with loved ones. When we start to put finances above loved ones, we start missing out on incredible memories that we will later regret. It can even break apart the bond between you and your significant other if you let it.
After years of giving my job more priority over my fiance, I realized my relationship was falling to pieces. My job quite literally broke us up for a few months. Not that I can give it 100% blame since I was the one making it happen. I let my job, my need for perfection, and friends push me farther away from the love of my life.
Once I opened my eyes, everything changed. Now I have a career that I love and work to balance my job and relationships so that both get an equal amount of my energy.
Schedule the time, no matter what.
Careers are going to take up a lot of our time, this is inevitable. I like to think of a day with the three eight’s (which you have probably heard of before). You have eight hours for sleep, eight hours of work, and eight of your own time.
Obviously, this doesn’t work for everyone, but you can change the timing to fit your schedule. As much as we think we don’t have time for something, the truth is we do if we change our priorities.
How much time do you spend scrolling through Facebook or watching TV? You would be surprised how many hours in the day we actually throw away doing mindless things.
You probably easily waist 30 minutes to an hour watching a TV show on Netflix. Instead of watching the show, spend that time doing something you either love or need to do. Work will always take up your time, but it is your choice to have it take up your life.
After I started scheduling my TV time, I noticed I had so much more time in the day to spend with my fiance or on a hobby I love doing. Don’t know where to start? Make ‘no technology ‘ days.
These days can happen once or more a week and require you to keep the phone in a different room and the TV off. This way, you are forced to hang out with others or do something you’ve been wanting or needing to do to help balance your work and relationships.
Show your appreciation to help balance your work and relationships.
Some days are going to be filled to the brim with events that we cannot control. I have found that taking 20 minutes out of each day to show a little appreciation can make a huge difference.
Balancing doesn’t always mean an equal amount for both parties. Sometimes it is the quality of time that matters more than the quantity of time.
You can balance your work and relationships by picking a chore before work and accomplishing it. I have started adding dishes or laundry in my morning routine. Realistically it only takes a few minutes out of my regular routine, and it takes a little stress off my fiance when he comes home from a long day of work.
While I might not have spent actual time with him, the gesture speaks more than words.
We hear it all the time; actions speak louder than words. I love having deep conversations about our day, but sometimes it is impossible. For instance, my fiance works around 8 hours on Thursdays and then goes to a climbing gym to teach a class.
He leaves in the morning and comes home hours after I have fallen asleep. For these days, I try to clean the house, send a sweet little text, and maybe even cook a small dinner. Yes, we didn’t physically talk, but he still feels appreciated just by my actions.
A few ways you can show your appreciation each day include:
- Buying flowers or something your SO likes
- Sending a flirty text to let them know you’re thinking of them
- Cooking a dinner
- Cleaning the house
- Making a bubble bath for when they get home
- Putting your phone down to focus on them
It really does not take that much effort to show you appreciate your loved ones. Even a phone call to your family every now and again shows you are thinking of them. We can try to make excuses, but there is no excuse not to put in effort towards your relationships.
If you don’t, you’ll eventually lose that relationship.
Turn your phone off at meals.
Have you ever spent dinner looking at your phone every time it goes off? Have you ever scrolled through Facebook? Doing this puts a barrier between you and the person you are with, even if you don’t see the blockade.
I am a firm believer in turning off your phone when I am with a loved one. Everything that is going on in the cyber world will still be there when you pick it up; that moment with a loved one might not.
Recently I wrote an article about the benefits of putting our phones down while on vacation. In a world where technology is literally at our fingertips, we forget the flesh and blood people that are standing right next to us.
We shouldn’t be looking at our feeds before bed but talking with our partners about the day we had or thoughts that surface.
This goes hand in hand with scheduling time to hangout. There are several apps out there that can actually show you how much time you spend on your phone. Those few minutes of scrolling can add up to hours that could’ve been spent having real-life conversations (and I’m not talking about facetime).
A balance between work and relationships means being conscious of how you spend your time when that clock strikes 5.
For all of my relationships, I make sure to put the phone down for long durations of time. This might mean keeping my phone in my purse when I go to see my mother or leaving my phone in my pocket when my fiance and I are driving somewhere.
These small little acts show you appreciate them and give both of you a chance to communicate about any and everything. In fact, I absolutely love car drives now because we end up having deep, meaningful conversations that wouldn’t have happened with my phone in my hand.
Express your love more often.
Do you use the phrase “I love you” before hanging up the phone? While I don’t love everyone I talk to via phone, I do say that every single time I’m talking with a loved one. The same goes for before I leave a house or am about to fall asleep.
My mother raised me with the care and knowledge that love is a mighty word.
More often than not, I hear friends on the phone with parents or significant others and end the conversation with a simple “Bye.” They are not bad people for this, but it never hurts to express your love.
In my opinion, the word is not used enough to show our appreciation. You never know if this might be the last time you speak (bleak, but accurate). Leave every ending on a good note and say those three simple words. You won’t self combust, I promise.
I’ll even say I love you after an argument. I might not be completely forgiving at the moment, but I still want to acknowledge that I love them. These three words can help show appreciation and shower someone with words of gratitude that they deserve.
Balancing work and relationships can be difficult, I understand entirely. As long as we are being conscious of our time and truly making a point to spend a few moments a day thinking about our loved ones, we can start to level out each day properly.
How do you balance your work and relationships? Do you have any tips and tricks you use to make each day count? Let me know in the comments below or head over to my contact page and fill out the form!
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