Finding a work/life balance takes intentionality if you and your partner work together. Creating work/life balance is challenging for any person and even more precarious for couples who work together.
When you work together, live together, love together, it can feel like there is no separation between work and play. Life together can feel stressful with a lack of adventure, playfulness, fun, and connection. Some couples in this situation say they feel like they are always on, as though shop talk never ends.
Intentionality means keeping focused on what is most important to the two of you. For many, this means prioritizing love, family, quality time, and unwinding time together. To ensure that your priorities are coming
to fruition, you must create shared agreements about work/life balance. These agreements will vary from couple to couple, but you can stay connected instead of drifting apart by dialoguing with one another.
A weekly date where there is a no “shop talk rule” is a great system to have in place. The date focuses on connecting at an intimate, fun, and playful level. Weekly quality time together reminds you of a side of yourselves that sometimes gets lost when you are life and work partners. You become creative and try out different adventures, whether a hike and a picnic, a movie, or a dinner out. Also, don’t rule out dates at home, especially when you have little ones; dates at home can be a great option. The primary objective is to be curious about one another personally, not professionally.
For some couples, weekly dates seem unrealistic with all their responsibilities. Another way to connect, free of work talk, is through micro connections. Each day you bookend your day with 10 to 15-minute check-ins. Start the day with your coffee or tea, a cozy place to sit, and be ready to listen and be present. Focus on sharing feelings and keep it personal, not professional. Leave out logistics or responsibilities or to-do lists; those can wait. This is about the two of you connecting. At the end of the day, wind down for 10 to 15 minutes with hot tea or your favorite beverage and check in again. Remember to focus on how you feel and leave any work for work.
Realistically, you may struggle to completely separate work life and home life because of the fluidity of life. But do make an intentional effort to create systems in your relationship that gives the two of you space and time to connect on an intimate level free from work undertones.