It's quite possible that at some point in your married life, work or other obligations will require you or your spouse to travel (without each other) on a regular, or even extended, basis. If and when this happens to you, how can you keep your marriage firmly in tact, and stay true to your marital promises, while distance and time separate the two of you?
Sure, travel can be fun and exciting as you see new places, meet new people, and experience new things. Sometimes it's nice to hit the road and see the world. On top of that, who can argue with those travel points you can rack up?! Free anniversary getaway coming your way!
On the other hand, anyone who has had to travel on a regular basis, and for an extended period of time, also knows that the novelty of travel can quickly wear off, leaving you tired and worn out. Constantly being on the road can be physically draining, as well as emotionally draining.
Regular or extended travel can also take a serious toll on your marriage. Time away from each other can provide the perfect opportunity for temptation to creep in. Who do you turn to when your spouse isn't there? What company do you keep? How do you spend your time when you're alone in a hotel room?
If you find yourself traveling frequently, or for extended periods of time, check out these tips to staying true to your spouse while traveling. Also, feel free to add your own in the comments below!
Stay in touch
Even though you and your spouse may be separated by a great distance, technology makes the world a pretty small place. When you're traveling, don't "check out" of your marriage, but rather, do even more to stay in touch with your spouse. Send him or her a text after your big client meeting, let them know that your plane has just been delayed, and by all means - call or facetime at night! Doing a little more to stay in touch will let your spouse know that even when you're away, you're still thinking about them.
Staying busy and engaged in worthwhile pursuits while traveling can be very helpful in keeping you out of compromising situations. I know quite a few people who end up working much longer hours when they travel - not just because there's a lot to do, but also because they have a little extra time to do it. You may not need to leave the office at 5pm, or 6pm, or 7pm just to go back to the hotel and bum around until midnight. I'm not suggesting you shouldn't kick back a little and enjoy whatever exotic location you're visiting (even if it is no-man's land!), but I am suggesting that you should have a plan for how you'll spend your time. Idle time leaves you susceptible to poor choices that could harm your marriage.
I once heard a great mentor of mine say, "It's far easier to avoid temptation than it is to resist it." This is particularly great advice when it comes to staying true to your spouse while traveling. We all have weaknesses, and we're generally aware of what those weaknesses are. So, do everything you can to avoid any situations where those weaknesses could be exploited. For example, maybe it's a better idea to start reading that book or to get a jump on that big project than it is to hit the club with your buddies.
Remember your marriage
It can be a great idea to bring something along with you that will help you remember your marriage and spouse. For example, I've heard of people carrying a picture of their spouse to keep in their wallet, purse, or hotel room, or picking up a postcard for their spouse whenever they travel. On the flip side, I've also heard of people removing their wedding rings when they're on the road. Think of the message this sends! Not a great idea. The key is to remember your spouse even though you may be away from home - and by all means keep that wedding ring firmly in place!
p/c top photo: Caitlinn Mahar-Daniels
"You come to love not by finding the perfect person, but by seeing an imperfect person perfectly."
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