Dear Sybersue: How Can I Have a Loving Relationship & Keep My Successful Career?

All Work and No Play Will Keep Potential Relationships Away

All Work and No Play Will Keep Potential Relationships Away

Dear Sybersue,

I am very successful and really motivated with my career but I do not have time to date much right now. I am an attractive, outgoing 33 year old woman but worry that if I spend too much time outside of the relationship market, I may end up screwing myself down the road. (pun intended!) How do I make both my career and love life a healthy compromise? Men say they like independent women but my experience has always been the opposite. It seems to scare them off!

My schedule is intense but I have a great group of assistants that I could delegate some of my demanding work load to so that I could take a few afternoons off. They constantly take over some of the time consuming tasks at the office to push me out of the front door so that I can have a life. I admit I am a workaholic which is becoming a lonely habit and making me somewhat reclusive. I used to be a fun woman with many friends and never had trouble getting a date. But that was 8 years ago and since then I have become one of those people that are “all about my career!”  Everyone thinks it is such an easy solution but I am addicted to my job and the fact that it is my baby, makes it even harder to take time away from.

What can I do to get out of this annoying scenario I have put myself in?

Hopeful Hannah

Dear Hannah,

Your question is one that many established career women ask themselves today. It is not easy to be a successful business woman, run a household, raise a family and be a loving wife. There are definite compromises that will be needed to help it all flow and not leave you exhausted in a robotic state with nothing left for romance or relationship nurturing. One of the big reasons couples divorce is when a partner repetitively becomes the last priority. Maintaining the love in your life is just as important as stepping up the next ladder rung to a higher career level. What’s that expression? “It can be very lonely at the top.”

You sent me your question because you really do want to change things in your life and you are finally understanding that as much as you love your job, there is something missing. Even your employees are encouraging you to get out and meet someone. You are 33 years old and if you don’t want your career to be “your only baby,” you might want to learn how to start sharing your energy in other ways.

5 Simple Steps to Help you Start Dating Again:

  1. Take a few hours a day to get outside the office and your home to do something fun! Put yourself in a mingle environment that forces you to interact with others. The gym, a pub (sit at the bar!) go to a group event or take a cross training or spin class. Anywhere that people talk to each other!
  2. Don’t pressure yourself to date right away. If you do meet someone quickly though, keep it simple and light-hearted. Do not discuss work at all after you leave the office!
  3. Rekindle your friendships that have been put on the back burner and be open to meeting new friends as well. This will help you get out and socialize which will allow you to meet more people and possibly a fun guy later on.
  4. Familiarize yourself with dating sites, apps or the new single’s hangouts in your city. Get to know what to expect since you have been out of the market for the last 8 years. Things are much different in your 30’s than they were in your 20’s.
  5. Say yes to invitations! Don’t find excuses or sabotage things because you are scared of someone taking you away from you career. You can have both but you have to compromise to do so.

Here are a Few Things you Can do to Maintain a Healthy Balance in Your Life:

  • Choose a partner that appreciates your ambitions. He should be happy that you have a life which allows him to have one too. (Most men do not want a clingy woman who lives solely for her man. They do not like to feel smothered.)
  • He should be somewhat career oriented as well or he may resent your accomplishments down the road. Men still like to bring home the buffalo, so to speak!
  • Be careful how aggressively independent you are. Some women put up big walls that they don’t need a man! (It’s OK to put on the tool belt once in awhile ladies but you still have to let your guy share some of those tools.) It is important to show a man you want him in your life which is better than needing a man anyway.
  • When you are in a relationship it is important to respect each other’s individuality but also be totally invested in your part of “who you are as a couple.” One sided relationships do not work!
  • Helping each other with work scenarios, believing in each others goals, & supporting each others dreams are relationship builders.
  • Never be too busy to take their call, answer their questions or make them feel like you can do it all without them. We all like to feel wanted & appreciated.

When you are in a relationship as a busy career couple; I suggest hiring someone to help out at home so you neither of you are tied to household duties, as well as your work commitments. You did not mention whether you wanted to have children, but if you do decide to start a family down the road, schedule time for regular date nights where the two of you can have some quality alone time. Ask for help occasionally from your family, that way the kids get to see their relatives and not just a babysitter. Hire a teenager in the neighborhood to mow your lawn, get your groceries or other errands. It is worth the few dollars in the long run and gives you more time for your relationship.

(Be realistic when deciding about having a family as some careers don’t allow much time for a personal life or for raising children; which should always take priority over work.)

Being an attractive & intelligent woman you will always have plenty of opportunities to meet someone, but you must show that you are receptive to it. Let down your guard & the “I’m too busy with my career” wall.  Be honest with yourself if choosing a career over having a family is your preference, but don’t make the mistake of not making time for love in your life! Relationships are wonderful and happen when your heart is available. When you aren’t desperately looking for love, it finds you!  Keep you eyes, mind and heart open but don’t give up your aspirations or passions just because you think you can’t have both. Believe you can and make the changes to allow it

Love happens at all ages and sometimes fate brings it around at the perfect time.

Good Luck and stay true to yourself.

Sybersue xo

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