In most marriages, both spouses work outside the home at some point in their marriage. For some of us, our job is a career and takes a lot of time and energy if we are to do it well. For others, the job is a way to add extra income to the family during the time they are working. I know many couples where both the husband and the wife have careers, while other couples have only one spouse that considers their job their career. My point is that however you look at your job if you are not careful it can be a distraction in your marriage.
A distraction is anything that takes away from your marriage in a way that could potentially hurt your marriage. If I work eighty hours a week, am exhausted when I am home, and don’t have anything left for my spouse, my job is hurting my marriage. I know that some couples go through these intense seasons of long work hours and learn to manage it fine. But that is for a season, which makes it different. Most of us can do something for the short term if we can see light at the end of that time.
What I typically see today in couples is that they bring their work home. It may not be literally but it is mentally and emotionally. They are physically present at home, but that is about it. That will have a negative effect on a marriage. There really are a myriad of other things from work that can take away from a marriage. Things like travel and work relationships fall into that category. When I am in the counseling center all day, I am usually pretty tired at the end of the day. Here is what helps me. On my drive home, I put the day in God’s hands. I pray for the people I saw that day and then turn them over to God. Then I ask God to help me make the transition from work to home in a way that Nancy feels that I am totally hers when I walk through the door. You know what? It works!
Whatever your work demands, if you will focus on your marriage and family when you are home, work will not be a distraction in your marriage. What do you need to do today to keep your work from distracting you from your marriage?