Things That Interfere With My Family Time. Join Our #MTtalk » Mind Tools Blog
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Things That Interfere With My Family Time. Join Our #MTtalk

December 5, 2017

Please Join Us!

What: #MTtalk
Where: Twitter
When: Friday, December 8 @ 1 p.m. EST (6 p.m. GMT / 11:30 p.m. IST)
Topic: Things That Interfere With My Family Time
Host: @Mind_Tools

“Success at work without success at home isn’t success at all.”
― Dale Partridge, U.S. entrepreneur and speaker

How Much Is Enough?

Several versions of this story are in circulation. Its origins are uncertain, but it fits the theme of our Twitter chat this week, so here’s the #MTtalk version!

Gerry was a very successful businessman, and his skills and expertise kept him in high demand. He was determined to keep his company at the forefront of its industry, so he rarely refused work and devoted huge amounts of his time to his business and his clients.

One day, his 10-year-old daughter, Maddy, asked him, “Daddy, how much money do you earn?”

He thought it was an odd question, and wondered if she was worried about money for some reason. He said, “Darling, you don’t have to worry about money. We have more than enough to live well.”

But the little girl persisted, “OK, Daddy, but just tell me, how much money do you make in an hour?”

Puzzled, her father asked, “Are you doing a school project, Maddy? Why do you want to know?”

“No, it’s not for school, Daddy,” she said, “I just need to know.” After some more objections, Gerry relented and told her what he earned per hour.

“Two Hours, Please”

One Sunday afternoon, a few months later, Gerry was in his study, reading the newspaper, when Maddy tiptoed in. He felt a stab of irritation. This was “his time” and he didn’t want to be disturbed.

But something about Maddy’s demeanor told him not to get angry. She held her hands behind her back, and said quietly, “Daddy, there’s something I want to buy.”

Relieved that she was probably not going to bother him for long, Gerry asked, “What, Maddy? How much money do you need?”

“I don’t want your money, Daddy, you already don’t have enough,” Maddy replied.

And, with that, she took her hands from behind her back and held out a jar. It was full of coins and notes. “Daddy, I baked cookies and made bookmarks and sold them at school and to all the neighbors. I did all my chores plus more, and saved all the money Mommy gave me. I think there’s enough in the jar now to buy two hours of your time. Will you please spend two hours with me this week?”

We don’t always realize the impact our work can have on our home life, or how often we allow our commitment to our work to take away quality time with our families.

Too much screen time, taking work home, socializing with drinking buddies, and even being too involved in a hobby or sport can all have a negative impact on our family time.

Things That Interfere With My Family Time

In our Twitter poll this week, we asked you what interferes most with your family time. Almost a third of you said that screen time such as watching television or being on social media was a major factor. Slightly more than a third felt that working late interferes with their family time. Click here to see all the options and the results.

In Friday’s chat, we’ll be discussing “Things That Interfere With My Family Time.” We’d love you to participate in the chat, and the following questions may spark some thoughts in preparation for it:

  • Why is it important to spend time with your family? What are the benefits?
  • What does interference with your family time look like, and what happens?
  • What do you feel/think when you lose family time, and why?
  • How available does your boss/company expect you to be after hours, and why?
  • What are the risks of attempting to protect family time?
  • What are your boundaries like between work/family time?
  • What will help you to maintain new, healthier and happier habits for a better balance?


To help you prepare for the chat, we’ve compiled a list of resources for you to browse.

The Wheel of Life

Working From Home

The Five Factors Holding Women Back

Personal Goal Setting

How to Juggle Caregiving Responsibilities and Work

Finding the Right Work-Life Balance

At Mind Tools, we like to hear from people all over the globe. We’d like to learn from you, too, and we invite you to participate in the #MTtalk chat this Friday at 1 p.m. EST (6 p.m. GMT / 11:30 p.m. IST). Remember, we feature great participant responses right here on our blog every week!

How to Join Our Chat

Follow us on Twitter to make sure you don’t miss out on any of the action this Friday! We’ll be tweeting out 10 questions during our hour-long chat. To participate in the chat, type #MTtalk in the Twitter search function. Then, click on “All Tweets” and you’ll be able to follow the live chat feed. You can join the chat by using the hashtag #MTtalk in your responses.

2 thoughts on “Things That Interfere With My Family Time. Join Our #MTtalk

  1. Steve M wrote:

    Family is an investment. It is a commitment. You never know who will pass you your last glass of water on your deathbed. In this man eat man society you are not going to make it without family. Period.

    1. Yolande Conradie wrote:

      We agree – and sometimes we only realise how precious they are when they’re gone…

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