Balancing Work and Family

It’s a struggle so many of us face: balancing work with family life (or is it balancing family life with work?).

Here are 12 tips for balancing work and family more effectively, which I’ve taken from the handout we received a recent Men’s Leadership Forum at Reston Study Center. A big thanks to Bill Bowman for pulling this resource together.

Balance of work and family

Being Present and Vacationing Well

Being Present and Vacationing Well

I’m just back from Disney World with the family.  And, frankly, I’m not a great vacationer.

As a certified workaholic, I love what I do and have a hard time tearing myself away.  That said, I know that downtime is important every now and then for my own mental well-being and, more importantly, for my family.  I need to spend dedicated, undivided attention with them.

Lessons Learned from Christmas Lights

I dread the beginning of Advent. Dread might not be a strong enough word.  Hate?  Perhaps.

It’s my wife’s favorite weekend of the year.  Like clockwork, she wants to put up the Christmas decorations.

Young man trying to fix Christmas tree lights

That’s the part I dread.  But this year, I was determined to make the most of it. I was going to will myself to have a positive attitude.

I failed.

Getting Past the Poison and Working Together as a Team

Toxic sign

We have a major problem in America. Our political system has become so poisonous that it is impossible for us to make decisions and move forward.

We need to learn the difference between negotiation and compromise and principles that cannot be altered.

There are certain things that are fundamental, issues of moral principle, that simply cannot be negotiated. However, the majority of issues, are available to compromise.

It is essential that we learn to negotiate, to look at the positives and similarities that we have with others. We need to learn what working together as a team really is.

I Learned the Hard Way: Good Stewardship is More than Saving

How to Be a Good Steward of What You Have

Wealth seems to be a sensitive topic. Some people don’t mind parading around the wealth they’ve created.

I would argue that the main problem with wealth in America is that people parade around a perception of wealth that they do not have.  We live in a society that wants to keep up with the Joneses. At the same time, it’s a taboo topic.  One that’s hard to address.

People pursue wealth for various reasons but few desire to talk about their philosophy of wealth.  Some to hoard and become wealthy. Some to spoil themselves with the conveniences of the world.  Still others seek to use it for greater good.  They long to give it away – perhaps for recognition; perhaps as a authentic gift.

Sometimes Showing Up and Being Present Is Enough

He woke up at the crack of dawn.  It was his birthday, but he was the one who would throw the surprise.  Walking out to the car, he took a deep breath and sighed.  The road before him was long and the day would be both stressful and tiring, but this was worth it.  It was for his son.

After several hours in the car, he arrived.  He whispered a prayer that this would go well and walked into the room, head held high.

The room wasn’t an ordinary room.  It was a court room. This morning his son was being arraigned for crimes he had committed the weekend before.  A party animal gone too far.  A night of “fun” that got out of control.

Someone was hurt, and his son was being held responsible.

Sometimes Showing Up and Being Present Is Enough

4 Strategies for Staying Rooted in Prayer

Last week I had the privilege of speaking to students from the Franciscan University of Steubenville’s Center for Leadership. After sharing with them my thoughts about optimizing your impact as a leader, I opened up the floor to questions.

One question I received was about prayer. What tricks do I have for staying rooted in prayer despite my busy schedule?

I answered that there’s no “secret sauce.” I admitted that I struggle to remain faithful to my prayer and that it’s typically hard work. I try to get up early in the morning and pick myself back up when I fail to follow through.

strategies for staying rooted in prayer

5 Ways I Stay Close to Family While Traveling

I’m in the middle of a stretch of five weeks where I am only home for one week out of the five I’m traveling.

Typically, I try to limit my travel to every other week, being gone one or two nights in those weeks. Unfortunately, this time around, I not only have travel every week, but I also have significantly longer travel than I usually plan.

5 Ways I Stay Close to Family While Traveling

In order to stay engaged and not be a totally absent husband and father, I have some techniques to remain close and really try to make up for lost time as much as I can.

5 Tips for Getting Your Husband Home from Work

How do you balance everything?  I get that question a lot.

Interestingly enough, the question comes just as often from wives looking for hints to give their husbands as it does from friends.

7 Steps to Get Your Husband Home

Unfortunately, many of them don’t like my answer.  I don’t balance everything.  I strive for integration.

Here are a few tips for you wives and mothers out there with husbands who are passionate about their work. How do you get him home?