In a recent Best Western survey of 500 business travelers, 62% said that they feel guilty while on the road for work–with most saying that the remorse comes from being away from loved ones. They can’t stand missing special events at home like birthdays and anniversaries. They said they felt bad about unhealthy on-the-road eating habits and the disturbance to their exercise routines.
Does this sound familiar? If so, stay tuned to my posts this month, all of which will delve into the problems and solutions around “frequent travel guilt.”
First off, here’s some advice for dealing with young children back home:
>Have a set time to call home each day–just before bedtime is good for young children. A routine call with your spouse is important, too, even if there’s nothing major to discuss. Staying in touch and attuned to “the little things” on the home front is key.
>Before you leave on your trip, hide notes or gifts at home and call, text or email your instructions on how to find them.
>Record yourself reading bedtime stories that can be played back while you are away.
>Post a map and a calendar on a wall at home so children can see where in the world you are and can mark off the days until you return.
>If you are a very frequent traveler or away for an extended period, cash in a few extra frequent flyer miles and fly in a family member every now and then. It’s psychologically beneficial for family members to see what you do while traveling. It can ease their feelings of resentment, and your feelings of guilt.
What are the best ways for you to stay connected to your kids back home? Please leave your suggestions below.