A few months back, I shared a post about how much of a workaholic I was in grad school. I was in rough shape and didn’t realize I was overworking myself until I was very burnt out — too much sugar-free red bull and too little enough sleep/relaxation time don’t mix well in the long term.
Since that post, I’ve gotten a few emails about how to recognize when you’re starting to overdo it with your work. I’m always down to respond to your emails. Here are 10 signs you may be pushing it too hard:
- You hide work from your loved ones to avoid being called a workaholic. You hate being called a workaholic. After all, if they really understood the pressure you were under at work, they’d be doing the exactly the same thing, right?
- You’re consistently in bed way too late with the intention of being up way too early. There are never enough hours in the day and you can sleep when you’re dead, right?
- You fall asleep with your phone or tablet in hand (on a somewhat regular basis). Just… one… more… email…
- You’ve never known a bad time to send an email. This one can be dangerous because it can send the message to your teammates and direct reports that you’re expecting a response or action regardless of the time of night.
- You wake up with pen marks on your face (not a great look). You fell asleep with the Penske file in hand… again…
- You’re constantly telling others how busy you are. And they never seem to get it.
- You constantly feel like your treading water or you’re always digging out of a hole and playing catch-up.
- You don’t have any hobbies or activities outside of work. Which means its almost ALL you talk about. A real joy at the Halloween party.
- You’re stressed about work when your not at work. Every moment spent away from your desk is another moment you should have been working.
- You’re always accessible when it’s work-related but never available to see or talk to friends. And when they do get you on the phone, you’re simultaneously checking your email.
How many items on that list do you identify with? What are your signs that you’re starting to be a bit of a workaholic?
The distinction between being focused on your career and being a workaholic is not always black-and-white. Getting ahead certainly means some late nights, early mornings, with a pedal to the metal, laser like focus on the end goal. But you can’t live like that every day. Something will eventually give.