Managing a career can be difficult for many people. Put a relationship into the mix and your career is doomed? Well not exactly. Being in a relationship doesn’t mean your work life and career ambitions have to suffer.
Extensive research on relationships and careers show that couples in successful relationships make more money, are healthier, live longer and gain more promotions than singles do. The key is to find a balance between these two worlds in order for both of them to be successful.
Here are some steps you can take to help balance your work life with your love life.
There will come a time in life where either your relationship or career will demand more from you. The important thing to take into consideration is which one is more urgent and requires the most attention at that moment in time. Realise that neither your love life nor your job will always have first priority and handling each situation separately and prioritising based on the situation at hand is a good way to find a balance. Prioritising doesn’t mean making a sacrifice, it just means making adjustment. By building a strong foundation for both your love life and your career, you can prevent a disruption when your priorities may have to shift and keep the harmony in your relationship.
2. Keep in regular contact
It is important to keep in regular contact with one another so no one in the relationship feels neglected. A big factor in the breakdown of a relationship is a lack of time and dedication and this can be avoided with less work than you may think. Your career can be demanding but that is no excuse to not make time for your partner. If you live with your partner and they work similar hours to you, make it a point to wake up a little early so you can spend some time together at the start of the day. If you are not living together, give them a text in the morning and let them know you are up and ask them how they are. Take the bus or train to work? Give them a quick call during your morning commute or during your lunch break. You can send them a quick email or message on social media letting them know you are thinking of them but keep it short! Remember you are supposed to be working. Keeping in regular contact is a great way to show your other half that you are thinking of them and are still accessible while you are at work.
3. Have date nights
Date nights are a great way to keep the spark in a relationship and show your other half that you want to spend some quality time with them. Many people dedicate their weekdays to work and when they get home, just want to unwind and relax. While there is nothing wrong with this, try to put this free time in the evening towards your relationship. Take it upon yourselves to make at least one weekday evening a date night. Pick a weekday and as a couple, promise yourselves that this day will always be a date night and can never be broken. Go somewhere where you can spend a nice evening together and forget about the stresses of your careers. A date night doesn’t always mean having to go out or spending a large amount of money. You can spend an evening at home and have a nice meal while enjoying each other’s company. If you work in the evening and a weekday date night isn’t possible, always make it a priority to schedule a date night on a weekend. Going to different places and taking part in different activities will also keep your date nights exciting and prevent them from feeling like an obligation.
4. Keep work and your love life separate
Having a good career and a stable relationship (marriage) can be the best of both worlds. The best way to keep these two things happy is keeping them separate. While you are engaged with one of them, try not to think about the other. When you are at work, fully commit to your job, your tasks and workload, and the needs of your co-workers and managers. Don’t let your romantic life be a distraction. Concentrate on being productive and getting your work done so you will have more quality time to spend with your partner later that evening. Likewise, leave work at work and don’t think about it or let it distract you when you are spending time with your other half. Disconnecting from your job can even make you more productive when you return to work.
5. Choose the right partner
All of these tips will be in vain if you are not with the right person. It is important to be in a relationship with someone who understands your career and its possible demands. Before you enter into a relationship, you should let your romantic interest know exactly what you do, what your working schedule is like and vice versa. This can help you establish if you can both realistically commit the time and effort to the relationship and will save you a lot hassle in the long run. Your partner should understand that you may have to occasionally stay at work late or attend work functions. However, they should never have to feel that you are squeezing them in to your schedule or that you don’t have time for them.
If late working hours are having a negative effect on your relationship, it may be time to re-evaluate your current job. Meeting with your manager to establish more efficient working hours may be in order. On the other hand, if your partner is not considerate of the demands of your job or your career goals, it may be time to consider if they are the right person for you.
Remember that no matter how effectively you manage your time; there will be a point where either your relationship or career will require more focus than the other but with a little understanding and compromise, you will be able to balance your career with your love life.