Are You a Workaholic?
Recognizing signs of a workaholic or even the fact that you are a workaholic and doing something about it is quite difficult because the whole society actually praises such behavior. By staying longer hours in the office and answering your emails even while on a lunch break or vacation, you might get a tap on the back from your boss, but is that a healthy behavior?
Quite often people may not even recognize that they are workaholics. Most of those hard working people even brag with the fact that they work 10-12 hour shifts or that they rarely use their eligible paid vacation time and paid time off. Yes, this kind of behavior heavily affects their interpersonal relationship with friends, family members or even kids, on top of affecting their health as well.
Like with any other addiction, people who are workaholics initially feel “high” and they are very satisfied with their work results. However, they quickly become tired, stressed and easily irritated. Apart from these workaholism symptoms, their productivity actually lowers with more hours spent in the office. When that happens, it is critical to understand the effects of workaholic behavior and to take appropriate measures.
• Are you constantly thinking about your work even when at dinner with your family, or on vacation?
• Do you work longer and harder than most of your colleagues?
• Are your family members or friends complaining that you spend too much time at work?
• Do you neglect your health while pursuing your career?
• Do you sometimes catch yourself talking too much about work when you are out for a drink or dinner with your friends?
If the answer is Yes to at least half of these questions, then perhaps it’s time you took some measures before it gets too serious. If you believe the situation is already very serious, then you should look for professional help. In any case, here are some simple things you could try if you have recognized the signs of a workaholic in yourself:
1. Restrict yourself from working longer hours. This is probably much easier said than done, but there are some things you could do to help yourself through this process. Whenever possible, try to schedule free-time activities immediately after standard working hours. Scheduling a meeting with your friends, or a family dinner, or simple training in a gym with your friend or personal trainer might help a lot. These kind of activities will force you to leave your office every day at approximately the same time. Not only will you work less hours, but also your productivity will boost knowing you have to complete that same amount of work with less hours available. On the emotional side, you will feel better as well, knowing that you will spend more time with friends and family, or just simply exercising or doing things you love.
2. Switch your mobile phone to the silent or vibrate mode during dinner hours and learn to check your email box at certain times of the day. Try to spend more time with your spouse or kids. Once you are emotionally recharged, your work results will be better as well.
3. Organize your shorter work hours in a better way utilizing different time management techniques and learn how to delegate parts of your duties to your employees or co-workers.
4. Finally, learn how to better unwind at the end of the day and plan on your free time. Relaxation and time with friends will definitely help you re-charge your batteries and attack your job problems and issues with more energy and fresh new ideas.