Prevent your career from weathering your relationship.
Making your mark in the business world requires for plenty of sacrifices, but one thing that should never be sacrificed is the goal of maintaining healthy, loving relationships. The constant support of a devoted partner can spell the difference between calmly weathering the never-relenting storms of the workplace and washing up on shore like a sickly sea creature. As you methodically build your kingdom, keep the four next tips in mind, for they will help ensure that you'll have a contented lover sitting happily beside your throne.
1. Get them on your side.
Most people overlook the importance of setting up the proper relationship foundations. If you're a chronic workaholic, the first thing you need to do is to create a contextual umbrella for your behaviors, which can be done in a few simple steps.
The first thing you should do is sit down with your partner and discuss your future goals (business and personal). Explain that while you're excited about building up your company, you value your relationship just as much and are serious about making it work. Foreshadow possible problems that may arise (last minute meetings, feeling neglected, etc.) while explaining that these are unavoidable issues which must be dealt with as a team. You must let them know up front that you expect their support.
A simple discussion like this can help reassure your partner that you won't allow your business goals to affect your relationship provided they remain supportive and never attempt to sabotage your progress. Many times, framing things this way will minimize future problems and ensure smoother sailing through the rough patches of your relationship.
2. Schedule appropriately.
After you've explained that you're serious about making the relationship work, you need to now live up to your word. Do your best to arrange your schedule in advance so you can set aside enough free time to spend together.
Hopefully, they are secure enough that you don't need to be attached to their hip, but you should try to see each other at least three days a week, on average. Any less than this and you run the risk of producing a pouting partner whose constant nagging can wreak havoc on your productivity.
3. Give them a job.
People mistakenly believe that doing nice things for someone makes them like you more when, in fact, the complete opposite is true: the more time you invest in someone, the more you will value them.
Since this is the case, one of the best things a workaholic can do for their relationship is to get their partner involved in one of their projects. Back when I was writing my book, "Get Your Girl Back," I asked my girlfriend at the time to help out with the editing process. Not only was she excited to help me create something special, but she felt that it brought us closer together, as well.
Get in the habit of enlisting your partner's help by asking for advice or putting them in charge of some small task. Explain that while you could have easily chosen someone else, you trust their judgment and are excited about their involvement. This simple act can help solidify the initial impression you set up (that you are dedicated to both your business and your relationship) and helps reinforce the "teammates" theme you set up initially.
4. Learn to de-stress.
One of the keys to a healthy relationship is the ability to enjoy the time that you spend with your partner. As simple as this sounds, it can become rather difficult when you're constantly bringing your work stress home with you.
If there's something on your mind that you just can't shake, the simple act of discussing it can help release some of the emotional strain. As long as you're courteous enough to cut it off after five minutes, there's nothing wrong with asking your partner to listen as you vent your daily woes.
Feel free to bitch and moan to your heart's content until that mental timer starts beeping and then quickly shift your focus to something else. As long as they know you won't drone on for hours, your partner will rarely hesitate to offer you their ear.
This article was originally published at Excelle. Reprinted with permission from the author.