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Working at Home: Three Tips for Blending Marriage and Work

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COVID-19 has really been a game changer when it comes to the way we work. Most people are used to being away from their significant other for 8-12 hours per day. They say distance makes the heart grow fonder – boy is that true! My wife and I have been working from home together for almost two years now. Here are the top three things we've learned that has help save our marriage.

Respect her personality

We all have different personality profiles or temperaments. I don’t care if you prefer DISC, MBTI, or Personality Plus, they all get to the same point; we’re different. We need to celebrate that and not hold it against our spouses. She is messy and I am a neat freak. I used to get really upset about the messes around her work area. This was easily solved by me taking over a different room. It's a waste of time to put energy into being upset over messes. I will say to my neat freaks what I mutter to myself as I walk away from her messes, “get over yourself!”

Don’t get in her space (and face)

Respect her space. I am the interrupter. Every time I have an idea I want to over and tell her about it. This is distracting for her and it kills her productivity. I read a study once that concluded when your concentration is broken it can take up to 20 minutes to get back in the groove. Every three interruptions cost her one hour of productivity – ouch! I will not mention how many times per day I would interrupt her...let’s just say it was way more than three times per day.

Have fun with it

I like to think of her as the hot new co-worker. It has been said many times that we should always continue to date our spouses. You can still get work done and have fun with your partner. Take time to fall in love again. I guarantee your work productivity will skyrocket if you follow this tip. Re-igniting your flame will bring back a state of joy now forgotten. 

Take this advice from a man who has been there and done that. Working in close proximity with your spouse all day is not easy at first, but it doesn’t have to be hard either. Enjoy this time together, you may not get this opportunity until you are old, tired and gray. Enjoy each other now!  

Written by Dr. Lucas Chesla

Dr. Chesla is a retired United States Marine Corps Officer who faithfully served over 20 years. He is an accomplished Lean Six Sigma Master Black Belt with a robust portfolio of projects from a variety of organizations. Skilled in teaching, project management, coaching, mentoring, strategic planning, team building, conflict management and public speaking. His passions include understanding and interpreting personality profiles and body language.

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