How Can I Keep My Divorce and Career Separate?

Going through a divorce is stressful enough and the last thing anyone wants to do is incorporate it into their work schedule. However, sometimes you have no choice but to take time off from work to make court appearances or to take a minute out of your schedule to take personal calls. When an employee mixes their work with their divorce, it can lead to poor decision-making, a stressful work environment, and distractions. If you are going through a divorce, there are steps you can take to minimize its effect on your career.

Although you may not be able to stop every aspect of your divorce from bleeding into your work schedule, there are ways you can keep it from taking over your work life. A few strategies you can use include:

  • Discretion. It is okay to have a few trusted colleagues to confide in, but when it comes to divorce and your career, it is best to be as discreet as possible. You do not want to risk having your credibility questioned. Think hard before telling anyone at work about your divorce, even if you feel like you can trust them. You should also try to limit the amount of divorce-related phone calls you take at work, especially from your ex-spouse.

If you know ahead of time that you will be spending a lot of time out of the office with lawyers or in court, it may be best to be upfront about it and let your colleagues or your boss know. The last thing you want is to have your absences misinterpreted. Let your boss know how you think your work will be affected.

  • Schedule wisely. Having a career is stressful and adding divorce matters into that stress can have devastating consequences. If it is possible, try to deal with divorce matters outside of your work schedule. Organize your divorce-related tasks and then take a moment out of your day to deal with those tasks outside of work.
  • Avoid using your business email for divorce-related issues. Any divorce-related issues should handled using your personal email. When you use your business email for personal matters, there is no guarantee that your information is private.
  • Burden your colleagues as little as possible. If the court requests any work-related documents, be sure to give your colleagues an organized list of the documents you need, rather than approaching them on several different occasions.
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