My wife looked up from dinner last evening and blurted, “I wonder if there will be a spike in babies born. Or, divorces filed.”

Give me five seconds and I can list at least a half-dozen reasons why there won’t be a a baby in our new house in December or January. She must have been hinting at the other thing?

We lived for most of our marriage in Ohio. We had an occasional blizzard in the winter that kept everyone indoors for a few days. My wife taught third grade (8-9 year olds) and knew that in a few years, she’d have a larger class.

Seriously, I saw a news item from China reporting a surge in divorces. Another news item from America reports a surge in calls to help lines for domestic abuse victims.

I’ve worked from home for the past 20 years. But we have a routine where we both get out of the house. I would go to the park for a run, the gym for weights and sauna, the coffee house for writing. She would go to the Y a few days, teach Yoga, workout, and sometimes have a women’s Bible study or gathering. Now, no such thing.

Many of you had to construct home offices because the work at the plant still needed to be done, and they didn’t need you sick with covid-19. It’s a new reality. And the spouse can’t leave, either.

If your spouse is a health care worker, the added stress is immense. Recognize that, too.

Take care of how you separate work and life. And an occasional deep breath (inhale deeply, hold for a few seconds, then gently exhale for twice as long of a time as your inhale–it’s the exhale that has all the benefits) works wonders for calm and focus.

Engineering and management are not all about technology. It’s about that machine called yourself. Maintain it, as well.

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