Skipper Trick #3: The Evening Trade-off

Earnest steps to the future begin at twilight.

Earnest steps to the future begin at twilight.

You skipped the phase in life where you can focus intently on working toward your dreams. You’re working toward your family’s dreams now, and so is your wife. But you still have personal goals, and so does she. To move along your unique paths together, say hello to Skipper Trick #3: the evening trade-off.

The Trick

Take two evenings a week: one yours, one hers. Put it on your calendar as non-negotiable.

After cleaning up from dinner or putting your wee one to bed, whatever your last chore for the night is, it’s dream time minus the snoozing. But only for one spouse. This is where you write your book, work on your small business outline, study Spanish, etc. You use this time to move forward on your personal dreams. But only you.

Just think how better off he'd be if Uncle Sam worked on his dream for a few hours each week.

Just think how better off he’d be if Uncle Sam worked on his dream for a few hours each week.

Why Two Evenings?

Two evenings is a lot to ask, nearly half of what is likely your only recreational time available on weekdays. But you use two to prevent the ogre of resentment from butting into your marriage.

If you both work simultaneously, that’s nice, even rewarding. But while one works, the other can enjoy a few hours of rest. She can go to wine night at the bistro with some girlfriends. You can work on your motorcycle without stealing time. These nights allow each of you time to grow friendships, enjoy hobbies, or just be alone–activities that, lets’ face it, most skippers don’t enjoy that often due to heavy responsibilities.

With two evenings dedicated, you have more to appreciate. You appreciate the opportunity to focus on your dreams on your work night, and you appreciate the opportunity for recreation on your off-night.