No one wants to be working long hours all the time, so when you have to, you might feel a little guilty — for sitting too long, not getting any exercise, and, of course, not spending time with the person you love.
Well, there are ways to minimize the impact of sitting (so it doesn't kill you — duh), and exercises you can do at your desk, but is there a way to repair the damage caused by long hours to your relationship?
The movies have created a picture in our minds of the hardworking man or woman mesmerized by the glow of the computer screen late at night juxtaposed next to an image of the partner anxiously waiting for that him or her to pull into the driveway.
But a new study published in the journal Human Relations contradicts that trope completely. Apparently, being "married" to your job isn't actually detrimental to your real marriage — or any romantic relationship for that matter.
A team of researchers out of Switzerland and Germany gave 285 couples online surveys to test the "conventional wisdom [that] long hours at work dry up employees' romantic relationships at home," where they answered questions about their relationship and career goals, working hours, and relationship satisfaction.
Their main hypothesis was that "optimization" of one's personal life — deliberately investing time, attention, and energy into the relationship — is linked to relationship satisfaction.
However, what they actually found was that couples who spent more time apart due to work obligations actually made more of the time they did have together to compensate for the time apart, creating a good balance in the relationship. They also found that career-focused people were more realistic about what they should expect from their personal lives.
When you really think about it, it's not a huge surprise: When you spend a lot of time with your partner, it becomes much easier to fall into a comfortable routine and more difficult to make the effort to carve out actual quality time. Who needs a real date night when you just Netflix and chill every night anyway?
Regardless, it's probably still important to not kill yourself with overtime at the office. After all, many past reports have shown that employees who take time for themselves to recharge — even taking a vacation! — wind up drastically outperforming those who live at their desks.
So find out if you've been overworking yourself and take a breather if you need to. But if you're still set on getting all your work done, and you're conscious about your relationship (as Shelly Bullard would put it), you can have a little faith that your significant other will still be there for you when you get home.
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