By Marek Struszczyk
According to the American Institute of Stress (AIS), job stress continues to be the primary source of stress for a lot of people. Now, what you may not know is that people who don’t handle work stress properly, may not only be placing themselves at risk for any number of diseases or conditions but could be doing so, at the expense of their family.
This is why work stress affects a whole lot of things in one’s life like in the way they socialize, their response to the environment, and most importantly, how they relate with their family. And speaking of families, how can work stress affect your attitude at home?
How Work Stress Influences Our Behavior at Home
The effect of one’s work stress can be visible in how you interact with your family in three ways: overreaction, over-concentration and transferred aggression. Now, let me explain.
Overreaction as an end product of work stress often comes to play when for instance, the man in a family, overreacts towards a family issue that could have been resolved amicably, by either smashing glasses on the floor or over yelling at the top of his voice.
And over-concentration on the other hand, could be seen when the same man, for instance, gets home and decides to continue working on perhaps an urgent task that was assigned to him at the office. At such point, the job is so important to him that he’ll subconsciously neglect his family.
Then transferred aggression, is visible when the same man gets angry at his spouse or children for no just cause, perhaps because of an argument at work or a criticism laid on him.
In other words, no matter how hard one tries to conceal work stress, it will always manifest in any of the above ways.
How to Protect Your Family from Work Stress
It doesn’t always have to be this way. If you genuinely love and care about your family, there are ways in which you can protect your family from being a victim of your work stress. If you’re interested in knowing these steps, then come with me.
1. Complete Daily Tasks
The first thing you’d want to do if you must stand the chance of protecting your family from the effect of your work stress is to ensure that every task you need to be completed before you get home is accomplished. In other words, once you step out of your office door, erase anything work-related out of your memory because it’s time to go home to your family!
What we often fail to realize is that there is so much power in taking deep breaths. It relaxes the mind and soul, especially when one is anxious or stressed out. So, try making it a habit of taking full deep breaths whenever you get back from work so that your mind will become calm and your actions won’t be fuelled by stress.
3. Switch Off Phones and Notifications
Are you familiar with the famous quote that says, “If Mohammed doesn’t run to the mountain, the mountain will run to Mohammed?” Well, even after you’ve decided to clear your mind off work-related issues, if your mobile phone is still on, with notification alerts fully activated, then you might receive an emergency call or mail from your boss on a task he needs you to complete for him urgently while at home.
However, if you wouldn’t want such to happen, all you need to do is switch off your phone when you get home, or place it on silent mode. That way, you won’t be distracted from spending quality time with your family.
4. Make Time for Your Family
The last but not the least way through which you can protect your family from being a victim of your work stress is by making out time to spend with them. And how can you do this? Take them out on picnics, either when you’re back from work or during the weekends. Better still, you guys could all head to the cinema to see a trending movie, go hiking in the mountains, a dinner or engage in any sporting activity together.
And if you’d love to take things a bit further, you can decide to make a room for a one-on-one discussion with each of your family members, especially the kids, so that you’ll get to know what’s happening in their school life, who’s their new teacher, their best friend or even their worst days in school. Now, the importance of engaging in these particular activities with them (your family) is that it will help in balancing the relationship between your work and family, no matter how stressed-out you get at work every day.
In a nutshell, work stress is a critical condition, especially when proper attention is not paid to it. And the thing is, the more you overlook this condition, the more it’ll destroy your relationship with your family. So, if you ever get to find yourself in a work stressed condition, or perhaps have been battling with it for quite some time now, all you have to do is follow the above measures, and you’ll be amazed at how easy it is, to protect your family from being a victim of your work stress.