Having a clear-set path for your career is a great thing. Ambition, similarly, can ultimately mean achieving your dreams. But when the balance of your life gets out of whack, focusing too much time on your career can ultimately weigh down your relationship and potentially lead to a break-up.
The problem is, many people don’t even realize when their careers are getting in the way. Women who are too career-minded will say “he just can’t handle a woman who makes more than him.” Men who are too career-minded will similarly place the blame on his partner. But what if you’re the problem?
If you think your career might be getting of the way of great things in your personal life, it’s time to check for the signs.
Sign #1: You can’t put your phone down at home. Sure, there sometimes legitimate reasons to take your home with you. Doctors who are on call need to be able to go to work at a moment’s notice, for example. But if you otherwise have trouble distinguishing home time from work time, then you’re going to create stress to the people around you. No one likes feeling like they’re not worthy of your full attention, after all. And while your significant other might not feel jealous of your job, they still might feel that something’s not quite right. So try it tonight: turn off the phone until you wake up. See how easy that was?
Sign #2: You start hearing complaints. If you trust your significant other and know they’re not prone to complaints or temper tantrums, and they start complaining…well, you might be the one with the problem. So take a good look at yourself and how you’ve been living your life if you start hearing complaints from someone you trust – you may just be surprised at what you see.
Sign #3: You miss “the big stuff.” If you’re unable to make certain commitments as a couple because your job demands are in the stratosphere, then you’re forgetting that the reason to work in the first place is to provide yourself a comfortable living. How can you have a living if you don’t have a life? Sure, your ambition and work goals should be a part of your life and should be important. But not at the expense of spending time with the people you love. Don’t miss big events – weddings, funerals, etc. – in the name of work.
Sign #4: You can’t enjoy the weekend. It’s one thing to decompress after a tough day’s work and start feeling social for the weekend again. But if you can’t enjoy a weekend entirely because of work, you might have a problem. Sure, sometimes you’ll have to work weekends – that’s part of life. But if you can’t enjoy a free weekend when you have it, that’s not life.
The good news is that you can start trying a few small strategies to ensure that your work life is no longer interfering with your personal life. Turn the phone off at night. Relax on the weekends. And spend more time with the ones you love.