I once read an article that questioned why so many chefs
were divorced. One chef claimed that if you loved food then
you could love nothing else. Another chef said that we all
work with young good-looking people and that it was easy to
get yourself into romantic mischief... Whatever the truth
may be, in reality, success does not just mean being the best
you can be in your profession. True success is getting to
the top of the pile and having a partner and family alongside
to share the view.
I cannot tell you absolutely how to achieve this mystical
balance, but I have a few ideas...
1. The spousal selection process
A successful relationship between you, your partner and the
kitchen starts with the selection of your loved one. The candidate
needs to be happy with the concept of being part of a threesome
on a daily basis. In many (not all) instances a relationship
with someone who is in the business or at least is involved
in shift work, stands the best chance for success. It is important
to be open with your newfound love; they need to know of your
professional desires from the very beginning.
This is essential in keeping a relationship on track. Keeping
your partner in the loop as to what's happening at work is
a healthy thing. If they do not have a basic understanding
of what happens when you are at work and who you work with
you could find yourself getting frustrated with them when
trying to explain a problem you have at work. Be sure not
to bore them with micro details - a four hour story of how
you ran out of tomato concass in the middle of service is
not really that interesting.
Again keep your partner informed. If you are totally stress
out and acting like a lunatic as a consequence, tell them
why, but don't overly burden them.
4. The opposite sex
Do yourself a favor, if you work along side a person who is
rather cute and you get on with them really well, don't keep
talking about them at home. Keep these stories brief otherwise
you can look forward to some spousal jealousy - never a healthy
5. Watch your flirting...
Flirting at work may start as an innocent comment or two,
but where does it end? Keep yourself in check.
6. Drinking after work. A quick beer can end up getting you
in to a serious predicament especially if you don't pay attention
to point number five.
7. Cook At Home
"What!" I hear you say, "That's the last thing I want to do
on my day off." If your partner is not in the business then
your cooking skills were probably as much of an attraction
as your good looks. If you expect your partner to put up with
the B.S of you never being home at the weekend then you might
as well reward them with an occasional fancy dinner.
8. It not just about you. Make sure you discuss what has been
going on in your partner's life too...
9. What to do when things are not working out.
When things get tough the first point to consider is your
workload. Many of us take on projects, promotions and other
extra curricular jobs that promote who we are and what we
do. This can obviously draws time away from your relationship
and the rift begins. Learn to say no to some of these opportunities.
Missing an event or two will not damage your career in the
long run. Do not be frightened to ask for help ( professional
marriage counseling). Remember it is easier to get married
than it is to stay married!
10. Do I hear the patter of tiny feet?
New addition to your family? Now have two full time jobs -
cancel everything! Go to work to earn the diaper (nappy) money,
come home to support the family. It's that simple...