Tuesday, February 17, 2015

Taking work stress home

My son loves my office. On the few occasions I've taken him to visit, he received lots of attention from my coworkers, treats, hot chocolate and got to play with the stuff at everyone's desk. He calls my coworkers "his coworkers" and requests to talk to them on the phone sometimes.

I love my work: It is rewarding and I'm good at it. Although I work really hard, I am pretty good at de-stressing in the car ride home. But, there are a few days when I am still mulling over office stuff at the dinner table, and those are the times when I need to admit to my son that I'm frustrated because of work.

It's only fair. This way he doesn't get stressed out trying to determine why mommy is frustrated.

Researchers conducted a study of how parent's work stress affects children, and they were able to find a strong correlation: Children whose parents enjoyed their jobs had higher self-esteem. The study also found that bringing work stress into the home and not talking about it gave children their own source of stress, as they would try to puzzle out what was bothering mom or dad.

The last time I admitted to my son that I was cranky because of work he gave me a hug and told me that it would be OK. He then made me a sign that says: "This is not an emrgncee" for me to hang in my office. (It's good to share our feelings.)

Are you honest about your workday with your children? Do they like hearing about your work adventures? Share with me in the comments.

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