Five Ways to Leave Your Work Stress at Work

By Harvard Business Review
May 15, 2019

Here are five ways to recharge at home without adding stress to the lives of the very people who most want to support you.

You don’t need to be a CEO to feel like work pressure is seeping into your home and cutting you off from your family. Stress is an unfortunate part of most jobs.

Here are five ways to recharge and reconnect:

Communicate, appropriately: When you’re distracted by work at home, your family might misinterpret your lack of attention as rejection. Be transparent about what’s going on. With children, be sure to put things into perspective: “Although I’m stressed about work, this is the job I wanted and I’m excited to be doing it. The things I’m worried about will be sorted out as I learn my new role.”

Transition before you get home: As you commute, include a mini-transition. You could, say, sit on a park bench for two minutes. This ritual can serve as a cue to shut down work issues.

Share the wealth: Although it’s helpful to tell your family what’s on your mind, don’t unload all your pent-up emotions on them. Find a trusted friend, colleague or coach who can support you during times of high stress.

Set a day aside: With your family, agree on a day when you’ll come home later than usual, reserving that time for work engagements or whittling down your to-do list.

Count your blessings: Research shows that gratitude has many benefits, including reduced stress. Before you get home, review your workday to identify one thing — no matter how small — for which you’re grateful.

Copyright 2018 Harvard Business School Publishing Corp. Distributed by The New York Times Syndicate.

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