My Job Is Affecting My Marriage: Work Stress Affecting Marriage - Working Too Much Affecting Relationship

Alex, a forty year old executive at a high-pressure investment firm works 60-70 hours per week. Even on vacation, he slips away from the rest of the family to go on-line, check messages and answer phone calls. Until recently, he saw nothing wrong about his behavior; everyone in his office and all his friends from school do the same. Perhaps you can relate? This is considered "normal" in some professions or cities, particularly amongst executives and expats. But what impact does working so many hours have on our relationships? And what can we do to ensure both our work and relationships get the attention they need? Take the "Workaholic Quiz" below and discover insightful tips to look after your spouse.

As a relationship and divorce coach I have worked with many individuals and couples where one or both partners working too much has led the marriage to breakdown. This is more prevalent if the person working so hard feels that they need to blow off steam by "playing hard." Playing hard is engaging in activities on a regular basis that take us away from family and home life, significantly reducing the quality time we have left for relationships. For example drinking, golf, sailing, client dinners, exercise regimes or clubs, or any activity that leaves the other spouse to feel neglected, rejected or abandoned. Rejection comes up a lot in marriage and divorce, I have seen from coaching many individuals and couples.

A recent study conducted on marriage and families in the US, found that almost a third of people working more than 50 hours a week said that exhaustion was affecting married life. Nearly a third admitted that work-related tiredness was causing their sex life to suffer, and 14% reported a loss of or reduced sex drive. They also complained that long hours and overwork led to arguments and tensions at home. Two out of five people working more than 50 hours a week blamed long hours for disagreements and said they felt guilty at not pulling their weight with domestic chores. In order to support you and thank you for reading this article first take my "Workaholic" Quiz and then Read The Secrets To Protect Your Relationship if so.

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To learn the killer, advanced strategies to save your marriage, simply click here!

Are you working too much?

Only you can know the answer to this question. It is not for me to decide or judge or anyone other than you. Use the quiz below as a guide to decide, it is one of many tools I use with clients to look at their life begin by taking the "workaholic" quiz then if you are working too much determine whether it is good or bad for you right now.

"Workaholic" Quiz

Here is self-assessment to use as a guide, not to judge or be hard on yourself, but just to be aware if you may benefit from making some changes. Workaholic signs include:

Your home is organized just like another office.
Colleagues describe you as hard working, needing to win, and overly committed.
You check your emails and phone every 15 minutes, even on weekends and vacations.
Friends either don't call anymore, or you quickly get off the phone when they do call.
Sleep seems like a waste of time.
Work problems circle in your mind, even during time off.
People who love you complain about the hours you work and beg you to take some time off.
You can't remember the last time you had a full weekend off
You keep delaying and putting off vacations for a less busy time that never comes
Regularly work over 60 hours a week

How did you score?

If you experience some of these warning signs on a regular basis and you or your spouse are not happy about it, then it may be time to re-evaluate how you are handling work in your life. To decide if you are working too much, start with asking yourself why you are working so hard. Do you have a reason and is your reason for working being met? For example are you actually saving or treating yourself to what you said you would? It can be good to take stock of our intentions and assess if we are on track. Consider what you are working for, for example is it:

Vacations? If yes are you actually taking them? I have found that over the years the typical professional and expat worker has an average of 2-3 weeks of vacation, compared to 5-10 weeks for their family members and 4-6 weeks in comparison with non-expat counterparts in Europe, Middle East and Australia.

Happiness? When I ask "Does working long hours make you happy?" A typical response I get is "Nicola I don't have time to think about or even know if I am happy." For others it can be either a resounding no or yes. If the answer is no, you may want to re-think your working life. I believe we all have a right to happiness and we alone are the only person responsible for our happiness.

Family? Financial reasons may come into play and if they are important to you and the family then you may feel you have no choice to work long hours. Expenses such as children's education, retirement, getting out of debt can all be valid reasons why you work long hours. If you are stuck in this place where you don't want to work so much but feel you have to my heart goes out to you. Reward yourself by defining a date when you can work less, or take action to find a new place of work with more balance. In the meantime plan in small treats along the way and do make time for vacations, even if it is a vacation at home Giving to yourself is key for you to be able to give to others.

What if your spouse already left you? Here's how to get them back.

Personal satisfaction? I choose to work long hours. I get so much fulfillment helping individuals and couples create change and heal emotionally after marriage breakdown and divorce. So right now it works for me as long as I follow the below guideline (step 2) to ensure those around me don't feel neglected.

If the answer to personal satisfaction is NO then you may be trapped (like I was many years ago). I was so focused on the work targets, that despite being unfulfilled I kept on working 60-70 hour weeks. We can get so sucked into the "system" that we miss the effect it has on our health, relationships and happiness. That's what happened to me, don't make the same mistake. It was like I had tunnel vision working from one summer to the next. This trend is common among executives, professionals and expats alike. I encourage you to use this article as an opportunity to assess your work and life. A healthy marriage takes time and commitment. Don't be so busy making a living that you forget to make a life.

Secrets to Protecting Your Marriage

1, Growth
I believe if there was one secret to lasting happiness and love it would be growth. Relationships and marriages just like humans, plants, animals and all living things must grow. What happens to thing that don't grow? They die. This is god's creation, the universal law of nature. So how do you keep your relationship alive and continually growing? By continually asking questions about your relationship, how you and your partner feels and assess if you are growing together or apart.

Raising questions ensures you don't take your partner or their feelings for granted. It is a way you can truly assess how your work, hobbies or other actions are affecting them. For example Kate was happy for her husband Luke to work and play hard when they first got married, this is how he had always been and she admired him for it. But after their second child, she hoped that he would spend more time with the family and help her. She began withdrawing from him and felt he had abandoned her. He felt her hostility, so instead of coming home more, the less time he spent at home the better. We have an in built mechanism to want to be around people that make us feel good and avoid those that make us feel bad. Without assessment and actions to grow together as a family, it can end up in divorce.

Sometimes we tend to forget that marriage and relationships are made of two people. Our focus is always on how we feel, what we want, what we are getting, our partner's behavior with us, how to satisfy ourselves more (especially when it comes to work / higher education choices). As we focus more about ourselves, our partner gets to feel neglected or rejected. It is difficult to say how many of us ask their partner about how they are feeling with the relationship and about our work choices and actions.

2, Aligned Expectations Are Key

I see many married couples who work 60-80 hours a week and their relationship is filled with love, passion and happiness. Their secret to success is 1, having aligned expectations both respect and accept that one or both are "work alcoholics." If your partner fails to meet your expectation of what married and family life will be like, there will be conflict, the issue is many couples do not share these expectations and expect the other one to guess. Secret number 2 is sharing a common goal or purpose for the working long hours.

3, Fun Time Together - One final tip to share with you:

If you do have to continue working long hours, and are concerned for your relationship. Don't fall into the trap of living parallel lives, you deserve to have a loving companion. Instead make the decision today to spend all of your "fun" and "activity" time with your partner for a minimum of 6 months. This commitment is so powerful you can quickly get back the love, passion and fun you may have been missing. It may mean you both have to give up activities and hobbies you enjoy, which some couples find hard to give up at first. But trust me I have seen it turn relationships around and work with couples on the brink of divorce. We get so much satisfaction out of hobbies and activities we love, sharing it with your soul mate amplifies it and your love for each other. Try it make your connection and love deeper.

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I'm often asked, "What is one of the most challenging issues couples face today?"

While every couple is different, there are themes that I see in my work as a couples counselor and relationship coach. One common issue is the difficulty couples have in prioritizing their relationship-a form of relationship neglect.

Relationship problems stemming from relationship neglect

Have you ever thought of yourself as neglectful? Probably not. When people think of neglect, it usually has to do with issues regarding children and parenting. But the fact is that many couples ignore their marriage or relationship to such a degree that marital and relationship problems often result-isn't it neglectful to ignore something so much that it becomes damaged or unhealthy?

As long as you and your partner continue to neglect the relationship, you increase the chances of marital problems or relationship problems.

Why is relationship neglect so widespread?

1. Lack of awareness

One reason is that couples simply don't realize that attention must be given their relationship in order to keep it healthy. The "if it isn't broken don't fix it" mindset keeps couples blind to the fact that relationships require ongoing maintenance, before problems surface. Try to develop a preventive medicine mindset to keep your marriage or relationship running as smoothly as possible.

Now that you've read this section, you've raised your awareness enough to stop relationship neglect!

What if your spouse don't love you anymore? Here's how to get them addicted to you like when you fell in love for the first time

2. Lack of adequate attention

"But we had 'date night' last month and still nothing has improved..."

You and your spouse/partner probably spend a great deal of time together. What percentage of that time would you say is dedicated to nurturing intimacy and the relationship? Two hours of 'date night' each month probably won't cut it. It wasn't enough for the couple quoted above. While it's a great idea to create specific times designated to focusing on each other, don't short-change yourself and the relationship in the time department.

You're in good company if you are too strapped for time. If so, rather than plan for large chucks of time, try shorter but more frequent meetings where the two of you can connect.

3. Lack of follow through

Emotional pain pulls for your attention and some sort of action. When you or your spouse/partner are in distress (due to a lack of intimacy, frequent conflicts, or unhappiness with the relationship) you may find that you're ready to give your relationship some attention. This might involve efforts to improve communication, creating opportunities to have more fun together, or even making an appointment with a marriage therapist or couples counselor.

Too frequently, couples take these initial steps, feel a little better but then fall back to their neglectful patterns. And when this happens, it's easy for you to conclude: "I tried, but things between us are just hopeless." Improving and sustaining the health of your marriage or relationship takes consistent and sustained follow through-not a one-time barrage of good will and attention.

Becoming good at something takes both time and effort: Great athletes, musicians and artists practice-a lot. When they stop, their performance suffers. Why should your relationship be any different? Couples who have successful marriages or relationships work at it.

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I want to share with you how you can save a failing marriage. I've spoken with tons of men and women who have told me their spouses wanted a divorce. Things seemed hopeless, but these couples are still married today. Many of them have told me their marriages are now better than ever! What happened? How did they do it? How can you make someone stay in a relationship that they don't want to be in?

Let me say straight up front that making someone stay in the marriage is not realistic and probably not even possible. After all, that isn't what either of you want anyway, and certainly won't work long term. What actually needs to happen is that the dynamics of the relationship need to either be restored to what they were when your first fell in love, or ideally transformed into something even better! Both are totally possible and even very likely, if you are willing to make some changes.

What do I really need to do to make my spouse love me again? Is it possible to build massive attraction in my spouse?

To learn the killer, advanced strategies to save your marriage, simply click here!

Here is how over 60,000 couples have saved their marriages. Even when one partner initially wanted a divorce:

1. Avoid the 5 critical mistakes that could doom your chances to save a failing marriage.

2. Be 100% committed to save your marriage, even if your spouse isn't trying.

3. Recognize that time is critical and the quicker you respond, the greater your success will be.

4. Be willing to take action now, even if what you are instructed to do sounds like the opposite of what you would think.

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Married couples find themselves in this position far too often! If you want to know how to fix a broken marriage and avoid a divorce, there is a step by step plan that does what it says. It definitely saved my marriage and amazingly enough, it works even when your spouse has already said he or she wants a divorce. This is not your typical Internet advice from a so called "expert." This is real and documented and proven to work!

If you are feeling confused or sad or hurt or angry or maybe all the above, you are not alone! Divorce is obviously an everyday occurrence in our society but it doesn't have to happen to you. You can fix your broken marriage with the proper understanding of what to do and what not to do. You see, there are a bunch of really common mistakes that lots of people make that can really hurt your chances to save your marriage. It is important to avoid these mistakes, which actually only result in driving your spouse further away!

What if your spouse already left you? Here's how to get them back.

What typically happens is that the harder we try to save our marriages with a spouse who isn't trying, the more they pull away. We push, they pull back, and the cycle repeats itself until eventually someone files for divorce. In addition when we make these common mistakes, we appear desperate and surrender all the power in our marriages to our spouses. This is simply unattractive to the spouse and convinces them all the more that divorce is probably the best option!

To fix a broken marriage you have to follow a step by step plan that involves saying specific things, doing specific things and behaving in specific ways. Whether or not your partner is participating or not, you will begin to see changes in them, changes in your marriage and changes in yourself! It is not enough to simply avoid a divorce. You will transform your marriage into a better relationship than you ever thought possible!

Saying or doing the wrong thing can actually cause your spouse to feel even more distant from you. You can make your spouse fall back in love with you, all over again.

You don't have to worry about whether your spouse is on the brink of asking you for a divorce. You can control the situation and use specific techniques to naturally make them fall hopelessly in love with you.

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