I was a workaholic until recently. Working in Europe part of the week, then flying back, working on a second and third job. It was exhausting but I did it for a better future. A secure future, where I wouldn’t worry about the cost of living in the metropolis in our old age.
Truth is, I’m getting older, and it is starting to take its toll. I lost sight of what was important, and focussed only on material things. I let my work rule my life for a little while, until my health began to suffer. I finally listened to the pain and sought help.
Fast forward one month and I’ve cut back on a lot of my work. I’ve delegated where I can, and I’ve opted for more time at home, with my Wife and friends, and our surrogate puppy who we’ve watched grow and blossom into a full sized dog. She’s a handful, and the rare weekends when we borrow her I enjoy it so much. Before now I would have worked all weekend and have missed out on spending time with her.
How do you maintain a work-life balance?
For me, it was pointed out to me that the cause of my migraines was sight related. I got that checked. Unknown to me, I had sustained an injury which had affected my sight, and it was repaired; but I was warned about eye strain, hence the cutting back on my hours spent at work.
One side effect I hadn’t expected was how overjoyed I feel when I’m preparing our meal for when my Wife comes home from work, or when I’m tidying the garden (which is huge) by myself instead of hiring a landscape gardener. Little things I now have time to do, which I hadn’t given a moment’s thought to previously.
There’s something nourishing about spending time connecting with my Wife. We both work together in our businesses, but its the things we do separately that connects us.
When we settle for the evening with a glass of wine and watch the sunset together, we talk about our respective days, and how much we missed each other.
Something will happen during my day and I’ll reach for her to tell her about it, then I remember she’s out of the house at an office, and I can’t wait to hear her voice and her laugh when I tell her what had happened.
I want to hold her hand, and to tell her how much she means to me. All the time.
It’s like that step back I took from being a workaholic has now allowed me to recharge and has filled the gap in my life with more love to give my beautiful Wife, and gratitude for our life together.
And that’s the way prefer it.
About Robin Wright-Thurnley
Robin is Associate Head Coach at Phoenix Relationship Coaching and works with men to guide them towards real lasting love.