A workaholic is someone who works compulsively. This can certainly be a good thing—you enjoy your work and find it fun and fulfilling. But, it can also be bad—if you feel pressured to overwork due to fear of failure, fear of pressure or fear of being anywhere else.
While professionals and companies can certainly feel positive effects of this behavior, it simply can’t sustain itself in the long run.
According to psychotherapist and best-selling author Amy Moran, “High-pressure work environments, rapidly-approaching deadlines, and a fast-paced world means longer work hours for most people… The ‘time is money’ attitude makes people think twice about spending a relaxing evening with family or enjoying leisure time with friends. It’s become such a problem that workaholism has been coined ‘the addition of this century.” The goal is to manage it so that it doesn’t adversely affect your health, career and relationships.
Here are a few questions to help assess whether workaholism may be adversely affecting you:
- Are you using work as an excuse to avoid going home?
- Are you feeling overwhelmed at work and having a hard time prioritizing and making progress on your projects?
- Are others taking advantage of your good nature by heaping their work on you?
- Are you using long hours as a status symbol or a way to garner positive attention or even pity?
- Are you stressed when you are away from work or prohibited from working extra hours?
- Are you told time and again that you need to cut back on the hours you do work?
If you answered “Yes” to most of these, then it may be time to reconsider your approach to work, and…
- Talk with your supervisor. Let them know about your concerns about workload and expectations and discuss possible solutions. If this is not an option, you may want to reconsider whether this is the right job for you.
- Manage your time. We all blame others for our workplace challenges, but more often than naught it’s us! Take a hard look at where your energy and time are going and consider making small changes that lead to positive new habits and big work/life results.
- Find a relaxation buddy. Identify someone in your life who can help you take needed breaks. Find people and activities that excite you to leave work at a decent hour and enjoy a restful weekend.
- Get help.In addition to coaching as a resource to help you discover and manage the source of your workaholism there are more aggressive forms of support. Treatment centers and self-help groups like workaholics anonymous are designed to help you thoughtfully manage this compulsion. The appropriate resources can help you become more efficient at work and proactively disengage from bad habits.
How to Be Career Happy? Avoid The Negative Effects of Being a Workaholic