Work Stress can affect your health

Ron blurted out before I could respond, “I had a hard day at work yesterday, clients were all over me and I felt squeezed, trying, trying but just hitting brick walls. Timmy had been up all night with a tummy ache so Ellie and I didn’t get much sleep last night. Ellie’s not getting any sleep either. She has been tossing and turning at night since Ed left. And she recently broke out in a rash from all the stress.”

Ron swallows hard and takes a deep breath.

“Three months ago, she lost her dream boss, Ed, who she has worked with for the past seven years. Ed got a promotion and was transferred to Chicago. Great for him but deadly for Ellie and her career. Her new boss is a driven, angry dictator who wants to transform the office so work is hell. The rash started last week.

Ellie is exploring other options but with the kids and all, she has a real short fuse lately. If my father wasn’t an alcoholic, I’d open a bottle of wine every night to ease the hassle but alcohol destroyed my parent’s relationship before AA. So that’s out.”


Work Stress adds Strain to Couple and Family Relationships

This is a setup for problems unless a couple realizes that work stress often wreaks havoc on family life. The marriage is habitually the first to wobble when work stress increases. Affairs happen, risk taking behavior begins, moods shift. Even the kids sense your distress even if you think you are hiding it. They may start acting out your concerns and misery.

One of your children exhibits behavior problems at school while another child fails tests or has more angst with friends. One of your teens gets depressed or anxious. Some kids are resilient and roll with the punches. They become more occupied with friends, music or the internet. But children with sensitive nervous systems are deeply affected by family stress that comes out in a variety of ways and affects them deeply. You need to connect changes in your kids with angst and stress at home. Even if you think they are shielded from your upset at work, it does affect them. After all, you spent many years trying to develop a close and loving family. If you were successful, they are tuned in to what happens to you. They may not always show it or act cool in spite of it, but rest assured, they know.


Strategies Successful Two Career Families Use for Work Stress

There are specific strategies you can use to diffuse that work stress and achieve the happy family of your dreams. If you are having a lot of conflict with your partner that seems related to work issues – and even if they don’t feel linked – nip them before they threaten your family with divorce or problems with your kids. Perhaps bickering is up while sex is down, TV watching, drinking and avoidance are increasing. You need to live these strategies long before you reach the point that Ron and Ellie did this morning.

If you notice that your kids have been jumpy since you took the new position, acting up at home or in school, avoiding you or acting needier than usual, beat it head on: click here to read scientifically proven strategies that work to get your family back on track.

40 years of teaching leaders in the family field and thousands of couples I have coached and counseled taught me what works and what leads to divorce and very unhappy families.

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