For me, a day at the office ends in quite the typical manner. I log off my computer, gather my things and say my goodbyes. All official duties stop once I hit that stretch of pavement between the building and my car. Or at least that’s my intention. Sometimes, I don’t realize I’ve subconsciously lugged home after-hours assignments until I’m in my living room, meticulously rehashing the day’s challenges to my husband. One day, in the middle of a particularly feverish rant, I stopped waving my arms around long enough to actually notice him. Even though I probably looked like I was about to take flight, his facial expression still puzzled me.
“What?” I asked him, clueless.
“Sometimes when you come home, you’re like a tornado,” he huffed, now clearly annoyed by my theatrics. “You just unleash all this stress and drama and it brings me down.”
For a split second, I almost took a defensive stance. I came thisclose to telling him how he was an insensitive jerk and to just shut up and support me and UGH!!! Instead, his blunt declaration stopped me dead in my tracks, forcing me to consider his words.
Realizing the accuracy of his assessment, I instantly felt draped in a shroud of shame. I had allowed my experiences on the job to infiltrate our personal space in a negative way. I’d come to rely on him to allow me to vent and express my frustrations with no filter. Suddenly, I worried that without an open-ear policy, my sanity would become a distant memory. Then, I recognized that in this moment, he chose to stop enabling me. I had to find a way to manage my frustrations without sacrificing a healthy home. As a result, I came up with a list of remedies to stormproof the home atmosphere from the withering elements of life at the office: