Marsha B. Sauls. Ph.D.
Although the popular media portrays dual income couples as time depleted with children who are starved for attention, most employed men and women think that the benefits of dual employment outweigh the costs. Are there ways to better balance the stresses of dual careers and family life?
A research study done at Colorado University showed that successful dual income families used ten adaptive strategies to balance work and family. Successful dual income families were defined as those in which the men and women were doing well emotionally and physically and the children were thriving. The ten strategies are:
1. Value Family Maintain a commitment to family as the highest priority.
2. Strive for Partnership Divide labor. Equalize power. Support one another.
3. Derive Meaning From Work Find enjoyment and purpose from work.
4. Maintain Work Boundaries Set limits on professional commitments.
5. Focus and Produce at Work Be productive at work.
6. Prioritize Family Fun Have and enjoy playtimes.
7. Take Pride In Dual Earning - Discuss openly the personal/family benefits.
8. Live Simply Keep finances under control. Have realistic expectations.
9. Make Decisions Proactively Maintain priorities. Think of consequences.
10. Value Time Maximize time. See it as a valuable commodity