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Tuesday, September 16, 2008

"Landmark Transitions" Guest Post by Scott Couchenour

We read a lot about Work/Life Balance in articles these days. For some, it means a seamless transition from a work mindset to a life mindset, depending on what's appropriate at the time.

One way I accomplish this aspect of balance is by selecting a landmark on my commute home from work. On my way home, there is a bridge I cross over an interstate. This part of my commute is about 4 minutes from my doorstep. While on the bridge, I mentally close the door to work and begin thinking of my wife, my daughter in college, and my teenage son. I pick out something about each one of them (something they like, or fear, or are interested in) and dwell on that for the remainder of my commute (about 4 minutes or so). I try to EMPTY my mind of work-related stuff and FILL my mind with family.

Now, before I go any further, I must confess this is a struggle for me at times. I forget. If I'm not careful, I can bring work right into the house with me and my wife can see work smeared all over my face. But when I remember to transition, it does wonders for my family life.

This is possible to do, whether your commute is 5 minutes or an hour. If your work and life have the same location (in other words, if you are a caregiver to someone in your home), you may need to "create a commute" by taking a drive or walk outside and selecting a landmark to trigger your transition before you circle back home.

What's going to be your landmark? How are you going to use it to make a significant transition? Remember, a balanced life has a greater impact.

by Scott Couchenour, Certified Life Coach
Promoting Balance in People Helping

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