Are you a workaholic? Easier ways to get more accomplished
Monday, December 17, 2018
If you're a workaholic — meaning you're on the job 50 or more hours per week — your physical and emotional health can easily suffer without you even realizing it.
Poor sleep, weight gain, stress at home, and multiplying mistakes as you start to burn out won't lead to a good outcome for you or your company. No worries, though: science has several easy and effective solutions to help you treat yourself better — and do your best work. Try these tips:
Don't neglect your health.
A Kansas State University study found that workaholics are very likely to skip meals — unhealthy behaviors like lack of food and sleep won't help you do your best job. Make sure to always take your lunch hour — the work will still be there when you get back.
Write yourself a fan letter.
Recent research from Australian Catholic University found that self-compassion can prevent depression in perfectionists, who are often workaholics and who can suffer from due to negative self-talk and being too afraid of making a mistake.
Sit down with a pen and paper and make a list of 10 great qualities you bring to your job — you can choose affirmations like "I have a lot of experience with presentations" or "I really did a great job finishing up that last deal for the organization."
Read the list over whenever you notice you're pushing yourself harder than you need to and you'll instantly relax about your skill set.
Admit that you're human.
If you're a perfectionist, you're no doubt highly motivated to work every detail of a project, which is terrific.
However, the high standards you set for yourself may make you susceptible to unnecessary anxiety on the job and drive you to focus too narrowly on certain portions of your work. Ultimately, that's a big picture time waster.
A study from the University of Kentfound that being highly motivated at work and focused on doing everything right can blossom into full-fledged workaholism. Worrying less about the tiny parts of your performance is easier on your ego and will make your projects work better cohesively.
Streamline your most unpleasant tasks.
Most workaholics tend to think of every duty as something to plow through — they don't differentiate the rewarding aspects of what they do from the drudgework. You can become happier when you consciously identify your least favorite tasks, however.
Once you know what you don't want to do, you can delegate that work, or tackle it first. Better time management leaves you more time to focus on work that makes you feel proud and fulfilled, and your mood improves.
Stick to a strong work-life balance.
Research from Virginia Tech shows that just the thought of checking work emails at home can cause a serious stress spike both physically and emotionally (and that's before you read through them). Get serious about a 6 p.m. cutoff time for work messages and relax when you get home.
After hours, too, pursue a hobby that takes you completely out of your work mindset — read an absorbing novel, or clear your head with an evening meditation. That daily downtime will refresh you for tomorrow — and you deserve it tonight!
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