Shut off work world when you reopen front door

By Keven Spehe, NolaCatholicParenting.org

A daily difficulty I face is turning off work. My life, what I do and how I need to think and operate does a 180-degree flip as soon as I walk through my doors.

How I relate to a coworker or client just isn’t the same as when I interact with my kids or my wife, who has had a full day with four little kids.

How do I turn off the work version of me and turn on the husband and dad version so quickly?

Unfortunately, it isn’t as easy as flipping a switch. Whether you have a five-minute or a one-hour commute, I’ve found that time between work and home is crucial.

Make it a priority to get any last thoughts, stresses, frustrations and to-do items out of your mind.

Personally, I run through those items in my head on the way home. Then, I hit this point on the way home where the speed limit goes from 35 mph to 20 mph. It is precisely at this point that I am given the reminder to, literally, slow down and to give it all over to God.

Those items can wait until the next morning. If they can’t, maybe it’s time to ask yourself if you are in the right profession as a dad of little kids.

For many dads, our time with our kids is quite restricted, so when the evening time occurs, let it be restricted to them alone.

My priority has to shift to my home, where my primary vocation truly lies. I remind myself that I am responsible for the other five souls in this house, and the way I come home and respond to them can have lasting impacts on them.

God will likely not care as much about the amount of e-mails I send out each day or the buildings I complete. He will more likely judge the way I love and serve my wife and the time and love I give to my children. 

Committed to outdoor adventures, Kevin takes his family to see the world whenever the small moments arise. Daily, though, he works in the construction industry for a local general contractor. Growing up, he worked for his dad’s construction company, so it feels a bit like home even though he’s replaced his view of the Rockies for flatlands of Louisiana. He also serves on the board of the Woman’s New Life Center and enjoys being a part of their life-changing mission. His three favorite things are: Colorado, cold weather and outdoor adventures with his family. He is married to Casey Spahe.

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