Tips and Tricks for Couples With Opoosite Work SchedulesA few months ago, you began working the night shift at “your hospital.” Your new job excites, challenges and fulfills you. Unfortunately, you’re struggling with having a work schedule that’s the opposite of your partner’s day shift. (And you thought you’d get all that time back after graduation!)
If you can relate to this scenario, you may feel lonely and detached from your partner. To make your relationship thrive while working different hours of the day, consider the following tips and tricks:
Revamp your sleeping area.
When partners work opposite schedules, achieving sound sleep can seem difficult, if not impossible. When you don’t rest properly, both your mood and your health can be compromised. Without sleep, you also won’t likely be as alert and productive at work as you need to be and patient and nurse safety can be jeopardized. To arrive at harmony in the bedroom, you and your partner may need to rethink your sleep area. For instance, you might want to invest in:
- A vibrating alarm clock that won’t wake your partner
- Separate beds
- Darker blinds, curtains or shades
If you currently have a television in your bedroom, removing it is a smart, albeit sometimes difficult, idea. Believe it or not, your TV can drive a wedge between you because it becomes the “third person” in the room.
Also, if you like to work in your bedroom in the early morning hours or late at night, consider moving your workstation to another room in the home. It’s best to allow your brain to associate your bed primarily with sleep.
Address routine household discussions electronically.
If you and your partner work opposite schedules, making the most of your limited time together is paramount. Make your time with your loved one special by avoiding discussing mundane household issues such as:
- Monthly bills
- Grocery lists
- Dry cleaning
Instead of talking about these items in person, address them electronically through e-mails and text messages. With all of these out of the way, your in-person time can stay focused on nurturing your relationship.
You could also consider using an app to stay connected — it is the 21st century, after all!
Keep the romance alive through small gestures.
When you haven’t spent time with your partner in a while, feelings of loneliness and insecurity may creep in, so strive to keep the romance alive in your relationship through small gestures of affection. For example, you might want to:
- Place a sweet note in your partner’s sock drawer.
- Leave a loving voicemail on your mate’s cellphone.
- Send your partner flowers at work.
- Place your loved one’s favorite candy bar in his or her bag.
- Do that one chore your partner dislikes the most before he or she gets home.
Keeping a relationship strong while working opposite schedules might be challenging, but it’s by no means impossible. To remain happily connected to your mate while working opposite shifts, take the time to better understand what the other needs while you are together and apart.
Join in on the conversation. What works for you and your partner? NOW is the time for nurses to unite. Join the movement at SaveOurNurses.com or on Facebook, Instagram, Twitter and LinkedIn — because after all, it shouldn’t hurt to be a nurse.