Successful people don’t work 8 hours a day. They work more. And they don’t sleep 8 hours a night. They sleep much less.
Is that your motto? It used to be mine too until recently. Success isn’t determined by how much effort we put in, but by what we accomplish in the most efficient and effective way.
It has always been that way, but somewhere along the line, we began to glamorize over time. Terms like hustle culture, performative workaholism, or presenteeism have imposed the current workplace trends. Many startups, as well as established companies, follow that mindset. You have to work hard and deliver outstanding results as a matter of course. The problem is that we sometimes fail to distinguish between working hard and working too hard.
Let me make it clear. When you work hard, you should be able to set yourself limits. For example, you are working on a challenging task. Each day you dedicate a certain amount of time to it. You do perform very well, and you also know when and how to relax. While when you overwork, you don’t have a minute to relax. You are overwhelmed trying to manage too many things at once, which can result in burnout.
There are three main signs that you may be experiencing burnout:
- The signs include: Sleep deprivation, an increased level of stress, fatigue, or exhaustion, difficulty concentrating, and an increased occurrence of illnesses.
- Emotional signs — You are irritated and demotivated. You don’t enjoy what you used to anymore. You might feel like a failure. You are in a bad mood.
- Change of behavior — You are unable to balance work and social life. You better isolate yourself. You take advantage of food, alcohol, or even drugs that can result in weight gain or an addiction.
Workaholism can be harmful to not only your body but also your surroundings. Working more than you can handle can adversely affect your productivity and overall performance.
The recipe for a successful career is not just rushing towards it but also being mindful and productive in what you do. Here are a couple of tips to prevent or stop you from undesired overwork:
Examine the cause
First of all, it’s crucial that you identify what is fuelling your workaholic tendencies. Is it the boss, the work environment, or your personal necessity? Once you know the cause, it’s easier for you to take further steps.
Define your priorities
Set yourself clear goals both at work and in private life. It will help you to plan accordingly and adjust your expectations.
Create a calendar
Calendars don’t exist only for business purposes. You can schedule non-work activities, such as family time, vacation, dinner date, etc. It will make them more official, and you will be more likely not to skip on those.
Learn how to say no
Is there overtime work to do? Does it clash with your plans? Learn how to negotiate to do a smaller portion of it, change the deadline, or not to do it at all.
Have something to be looking forward to
Try to find things that will stop you from overworking. It is also recommended they be social. In that way, people will notice when you’re not there, and you will be more probable to show up.
There’s no sense in being super busy at the expense of missing out on fulfilling our own desires and even harming our loved ones. Work hard to accomplish your goals. However, you should not forget to socialize and relax from time to time. Soon, you will notice an increase in your efficiency, and achieving your goals will be easier.