At the end of every workday, I do the same thing. I board the bus and go home.
I traveled more in my last job so at the end of some of those days, I went to my hotel room. But after a few days, I’d of course go home. All of me would go home.
At age 16, I was at my heaviest weight ever – 220 pounds. At the end of the school day, I’d go home.
When I was in my mid-twenties and living in Ohio I blew through money and partied a lot. More than at any other time in life actually. You know where I wound up at the end of every late night? Yep, you guessed it.
We all end up there, and we take every part of ourselves with us. The next morning home is from where we launch into the new day. And we leave no part of ourselves behind.
Since moving to Alexandria, Va., I began this blog, started a marketing coaching business, co-led Financial Peace University twice with my wife, started working at the Pentagon, became an active member of my church and more.
Through all of this I’ve improved my marriage, made wonderful friends, grown closer to God, changed lives and accomplished a whole lot.
But you know what?
I also struggled. I shed tears. I faulted. I stumbled. I made mistakes. I battled insecurities.
In other words, I went home. Just like the overweight high school kid who tried to be kind and make people laugh to make friends while simultaneously he hated who he saw in the mirror and mentally beat himself up every single day.
Just like the guy who partied too much in Ohio and who was stressed out and lonely. The guy who was living check-to-check and barely able to pay bills at times. At the end of each day, he went home.
You see, when we launch from home into the world, we take our faults, problems, flaws and insecurities with us. Like ghosts, they travel everywhere at our side. They influence our decisions. Dictate our mood. Pollute our spirit. And at the day’s end, we take them home again with us.
We don’t read about these parts of people’s lives in Facebook status updates. But we sure do take them home with us after a day of leading a team. Running a business. Caring for children. Delivering goods. Supporting an executive. Or whatever it is you do each day.
From the admired and respected leader to the neighbors who seem “perfect” to you, we all go home until the next day when we step out into the world with our ghosts and do it all over again.
So what’s my point?
Cut yourself some slack. Relax a little about that co-worker. Give that family member another try. Don’t be so critical of your boss. Hug your spouse more and complain less.
Remember that we all launched into the day from the same place we took our problems with us the night before.
Question: How do you deal with unpleasant aspects of your life?