Maintaining strong relationships with family and friends while working shifts

Maintaining strong relationships with family and friends while working shifts

Shift work can make it difficult to maintain strong relationships with family and friends, but it is possible with a little effort and creativity. In this blog, we’ll be discussing the challenges of shift work on relationships and how to overcome them to maintain a healthy work-life balance.

The Challenges of Shift Work on Relationships

Shift work can make it difficult to maintain strong relationships with family and friends, as it interferes with an individual’s normal sleep patterns and schedules.  It is also difficult to coordinate a shift workers schedule with that of a 9-5er’s work schedule.  This can lead to decreased social interaction, reduced quality time with loved ones, and increased stress. 

The Importance of Communication

Communication is the key to maintaining strong relationships while working shifts. This means keeping loved ones informed about work schedules, and making an effort to spend quality time together when possible. Communication can also help reduce stress and increase understanding, which can help improve relationships.

Making Time for Family and Friends

Making time for family and friends is essential for maintaining strong relationships while working shifts. This can include scheduling regular time together, such as a weekly family dinner or a monthly movie night with friends. Additionally, making time for special events, such as birthdays, anniversaries, and holidays, can also help strengthen relationships. 

Flexibility and Adaptability

Flexibility and adaptability are also important for maintaining strong relationships while working shifts. This means being willing to adjust schedules, make compromises, and be understanding of others’ schedules. Additionally, being open to new experiences and activities can help create meaningful memories with loved ones.

The Importance of Alone Time

While making time for family and friends is important, it is also important to prioritize alone time. This can include taking time to recharge and pursue personal interests, such as reading, exercising, or relaxing. Alone time can help reduce stress, increase self-awareness, and promote personal growth, which can benefit relationships.

Using Technology to Connect

Technology can also be a valuable tool for connecting with loved ones while working shifts. This can include using video chat or messaging to stay in touch with family and friends, or using social media to share experiences and stay connected. Additionally, technology can also be used to plan events, share photos, and create memories.  A simple text is a great way to let people you love know that you are thinking of them and makes them feel top of mind.

Making Time for Couples Time

For those in relationships, making time for yourselves as couples is also important for maintaining a healthy relationship. This can include date nights, weekend getaways, or simply spending quality time together. Couples time can help strengthen the bond between partners, increase intimacy, and promote relaxation. As a matter of fact, shift workers know that the benefit to their schedule is stretches off, so planning a getaway in advance or a staycation can create anticipation and excitement.

Seeking Help When Needed

If maintaining relationships while working shifts becomes challenging, seeking help may be necessary. This can include seeking help from a therapist or relationship counselor, or reaching out to support groups for shift workers. Additionally, seeking help can also provide a safe space for discussing relationship challenges and finding solutions.  Asking for help may also be as simple as asking friends and family to babysit if you have children so that you can get rest time. Or, perhaps help looks like having mom meal prep, or make frozen dishes to help reduce the amount of time you spend in the kitchen and more time with the family at the table!

In conclusion, maintaining strong relationships with family and friends while working shifts requires effort, communication, and creativity. By prioritizing time with loved ones you are sending out signals that your loved ones matter and are top of mind, and you also deserve the benefits of healthy relationships! 

A great way of learning how to thrive as a shift worker is by belonging to a community of like minded individuals who are going through the same struggles. Many have picked up on hacks and choices that have made the journey better and more enjoyable.  A great place to start is by getting organized and seeing all of lifes’ activities in one, convenient place.  Move your activities and shifts around on your calendar like a chess piece. Check out Turno and join thousands who have taken that first step to gaining back control over their schedules.  Turno is  the scheduling app that puts the power of choice in your hands.  What will your next move be?

Denise Hervias

Denise Hervias

As a Respiratory Therapist for over 15 years, Denise experienced first hand the challenges of working shift work and balancing a growing family.

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