Staying Healthy: At the End of the Work Day

Hubs is in the Army National Guard so when he isn’t wearing his uniform he is wearing a suit.  He is a private-practice attorney and works ten to twelve hour days to serve his clients’ needs.  He is a hard worker is an understatement.

Today’s Staying Healthy tip is for folks like Hubs.  It can be hard to find balance.  It is easy for him to come home, sit right back down in his home office and work “for a few more hours”.  We have been working really hard as a team to carve out family time in the early evening.  Not only is it healthy for the kids to spend time with their dad but it is also healthy, mentally and physically, for Hubs to have time “away from the office.”

Here are some tips to help you leave work behind when your workday has ended:

  • Use an answering machine, voicemail, or caller ID to screen your calls.  As a rule we don’t answer the phone when we are eating dinner.  This includes hubs and his cell phone.
  • Prioritize enjoying our time.  What is most important to you?  We have responsibilities but we also have responsibility to ourselves.  Find something that *you* enjoy and carve out time to do it.
  • Give yourself a few minutes to “switch gears” when you get home.  Change your clothes, eat a snack, or do something else that marks the end of the workday and the beginning of the rest of your day before you jump into your home routine.  I know that if hubs heads upstairs to change when he gets home he is much more prone to coming into the kitchen and talking when he is done.  If he doesn’t change right away then he will undoubtedly head into the home-office to check voicemail, email etc etc.  So I always encourage him to head upstairs and get comfortable before dinner.
  • Take the time to find out how your childrens’ days were.  Asks specific questions, not just “How was your day?”  Ask questions related to what they learned, who they sat with at lunch, what was the best part of their day.
  • Plan activities at home or with friends and family that will add balance to your day.  Dinner time is our balance.  I make it a point to have dinner as a family.  If it is extra busy we plan ahead with the crock-pot.  If I’m at a loss what to make I always have a fail-safe “Pasta and Sauce”.  But we don’t eat haphazardly.  It’s a planned time of the day for all of us to come together; a time to come together and be a family.

What do you do to encourage ‘leaving work at the office’?  It can be hard if you or your spouse are on-call, working shift work or juggling many schedules.  But make it a point to walk through the door and take the time to ‘be home’.

Looking for more ideas to stay healthy? Read other blogs ‘Staying Healthy’

– Leanne from

Inspired by 100 ways to feel better every day (Military OneSource acct required)byUnknownonThursday, May 26, 2011Military Life:,

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