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Living With A Workaholic

QUESTION: I'm living with a workaholic, what should I do?


Living with a workaholic is a tough situation! My wife and I have dealt with this throughout our married life since I work long days and often work on the weekends. We have found four main principles that help us cope:
  1. We always talk about what my work schedule will be prior to me taking a position or project. We both agree on whether more hours are worth the advancement and better pay.

  2. We set boundaries. We each communicate on what our expectations are.

  3. We create an atmosphere of understanding and sensitivity. A biblical proverb says, “Learn to be wise and develop good judgment.” Understanding and good communication is vital to living with a workaholic. My wife understands and appreciates the essence of my work and how work is fulfilling and meaningful to me. I need to understand her needs as well. If I sense that she needs more time with me, we plan a time to do something special together.

  4. We listen to each other very carefully. James 1:19-20 says, My dear brothers and sisters, be quick to listen, slow to speak, and slow to get angry. Anger can never make things right in God's sight.”
  5. Sit down together as a couple and discuss the following question.

    • Does the worker find fulfillment in his/her work? What is the workaholic’s motive, what drives him/her?
    • Was the workaholic like this before marriage? Has it escalated recently?
    • Are there any financial reasons (debt, maintaining a certain lifestyle) contributing to the problem?
    • Can the needs of the home be met with less hours at work?
    • What expectations of a lifestyle do you have? Is this a motivating factor?
    • Is the home peaceful and relaxing? Or is strife, angry, and contention prevalent? Do any of these unwelcoming factors contribute to the worker staying away from home?
    • What boundaries can you both agree upon?
    Solomon writes in Ecclesiastes that it is a blessing from God for us to enjoy work: “So I decided there is nothing better than to enjoy food and drink and to find satisfaction in work. Then I realized that this pleasure is from the hand of God” (Ecclesiastes 2:24).

    Workaholics - Learn More!

What do you think?
We have all sinned and deserve God’s judgment. God, the Father, sent His only Son to satisfy that judgment for those who believe in Him. Jesus, the creator and eternal Son of God, who lived a sinless life, loves us so much that He died for our sins, taking the punishment that we deserve, was buried, and rose from the dead according to the Bible. If you truly believe and trust this in your heart, receiving Jesus alone as your Savior, declaring, "Jesus is Lord," you will be saved from judgment and spend eternity with God in heaven.

What is your response?

Yes, I want to follow Jesus

I am a follower of Jesus

I still have questions

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