I realized something this weekend during our trip to Denver. I work way more than I have to right now. In the past I have put in anywhere from 50 to 70 hour weeks for my day job and then come home only to start working on my night job. Since Isabel’s birth I have tried to cut back on both of those considerably but not near enough.
I have always been a very hard working person. I would bust my butt to get something done and sometimes, more often than not, that would mean I would bring my work home with me. My dad was a hard worker and I am sure I get it from him. I have always wondered if he ever regrets not being around more when we were little. Don’t get me wrong, he was there for every little league game and would drop everything to help with a question or just just play a game of poker before bed. He just spent a lot of time traveling and for some reason I just don’t remember him being around a lot on a normal day.
My lack of attention at home was especially bad when I had my office setup at home. I would work through lunch because I could and then not end up not shutting down until well after the work day was actually over. I decided a few weeks ago to stop using my home office and start working from our real office again. I also started setting an alarm telling me when it is time to start finding a stoping point for lunch time and then another alarm to start closing down for the day. It has been amazing how I haven’t lost any of my normal productivity and yet have been able to start spending more time with my wife and the girls. It feels like I have just cut out a lot of the nonsense and now I have freed up the time to get everything done.
I haven’t been able to completely remove myself from bringing work home but instead of jumping immediately at every issue I wait just a few minutes to see if it is really an emergency and then handle it accordingly. Most of the time it can wait until I am back at the office in the morning. I guess the moral of this post would have to be; by changing my definition of an emergency, I have been able to not take work home as often and spend more time with my wife and kids. Still not as much as I would like but I am getting closer!