A friend cut this story out for me from The Bellingen News and I wanted to share it with you:
I hired a plumber to help me restore and old farmhouse, and after he had finished a rough first day on the job (a flat tyre made him lose an hour of work, and his electric drill died), his ancient one tonne truck refused to start.
While I drove him home, he sat in stony silence. On arriving, he invited me in to meet his family. As we walked toward the front door, he paused briefly at a small tree, touching the tips of the branches with both hands. When opening the door he underwent an amazing transformation. His tanned face was wreathed in smiles and he hugged his two small children and gave his wife a kiss.
Afterward he walked me to my car. We passed the tree and my curiosity got the better of me. I asked him about what I had seen him do earlier.
“Oh, that’s my trouble tree” he said. “I know I can’t help having troubles on the job, but one thing is for sure, those troubles don’t belong in the house with my wife and children. So I just hang them up on the tree every night when I come home and ask God to take care of them. Then in the morning I pick them up again. Funny thing is”, he smiled, “when I come out in the morning to pick them up, there aren’t nearly as many as I remember hanging up the night before.”
– by an unknown author
I was touched by the man in the story who had such respect for his family that he would choose to lay aside his worries before he entered the house. It requires considerable self discipline to separate your work and home life in this way.
Everyone has their own way of debriefing on their way home from work. I used to use the trip home to wind down, listening to music and changing my brain from the work brain to the home brain (and mummy brain).
The Bear has his shed where he must sit for at least half an hour, preferably undisturbed and with a beer in his hand.
How do you wind down? Do you do a good job of separating work from home?