Last week I posted an article about making time for yourself. Long time commenter John Galt posted a comment about separating your roles in life and making sure they don’t interfere with each other. This got me thinking and really got home with me. Today I’ll expand on John’s initial 3, but I came up with even more roles that are important.
I recall reading a comment that a man has 3 roles or demeanors in life that he must maintain simultaneously. One for his family, one for his professional life and the last is his private one which the other two should never meet nor mix -John Galt
I couldn’t agree more. Since I wrote a whole article on making time for yourself, I won’t repeat it here. One point I’ll elaborate on is separating your personal time from your professional and family time. Really, none of these should interfere with the other if you can help it. This time should be for you. To relax, do what you want to do on your terms.
This is one role many of you seem to know well. You’re the man of your family so you must lead. I like to think of a family like the crew of a ship, to which you are the captain. Where you lead your family is in your hands. How they turn out is up to you.
What I’ll stress here is actually making time to be with your family. Work and other obligations can take up a bulk of your time so making time to do things with the family is important. Remember to leave your other roles at the doorstep when you come home. Don’t bring work stress into your home. They need to know you’re strong and can handle shit, even if you are having a difficult time.
On the other side of things, don’t bring home stress to the office. I try to have a neutral or even joking behavior at work. Bringing stress to your team at work fucks with the dynamic. Listen, work sucks and no one wants to be there, but we need to be so just get in and do what you have to do. In keeping with the theme of this article, don’t think co-workers are friends. Do not give away every piece of your life, and more importantly, don’t give an opinion on something or someone to a co-worker. Remember anything you say can be used against you. Try to avoid the gossip and bullshit.
John’s three roles are solid but I thought of other roles I have in my life that I need to keep on point and separate from each other.
Alpha Male of Extended Family
I’m 30, 3 kids and in a good career and I provide for my wife and kids. Another role I have been given is the lead man in my extended family. I’m more successful than both my parents career wise. I make more money than everyone else in my family, and I’m the only person to have a higher education (when it mattered luckily) degree.
I have two younger brothers that I am a role model for. My father is getting older and basically passed the reigns of leading our whole family to me. All of my family members look to me to lead our family to better things. A role I embrace proudly. Take note though, that I won’t let extended family take advantage, nor will I help someone who refused to help themselves, blood or not.
A Mentor to my Friends
A man should build himself up by the sweat of his own brow, but being a good friend when your buddy needs it is something in itself. Two of my best friends relied on me in times of need. One got abandoned by his family due to extreme circumstances, and the other got divorce raped. Both these guys needed a friend to talk to. Someone that would tell them like it is. Both these guys have thanked me many times for this.
As a successful man running a family, you will be put into many roles. You need to know when to be what guy that role needs. I look at things differently at work than I do at home. It’s important to know who you are, but being able to shift your plans when necessary is of value to you. Also, be sure to separate these roles as best you can.