Normally, being considered a hard worker is a great thing. It means you are pushing yourself to perform at the highest possible level. However, there comes a point where the desire to excel actually becomes harmful to you and your work. Before you push yourself over the line from being a hard worker to an over-worker, consider these points.
Understand What Productivity Means
It is easy to confuse being a hard worker with being productive. You’re constantly in motion, checking this, sending that, but you may not actually be accomplishing much. Spreading yourself too thin and constantly jumping from one small task to the next may not result in much meaningful progress.
Often, productivity requires focus. It is more important to have quality results than to simply put in more time. Success isn’t about quantity, it’s about quality. If you produce quality work, you will be appreciated even if you didn’t have to pull overtime to do it.
Always Being On the Clock
While some work following you home from time to time may be normal, certain aspects of your job should be dropped firmly at the door. While some people find they can add incredible value to their projects by working flexibly outside of business hours, interrupting your evening every five minutes to answer an incoming email is likely unnecessary.
Instead of being virtually chained to your job at all times, feel free to leave any non-emergency until the next business day. Often, the difference between answering an email at 10:00pm on Tuesday or 8:00am on Wednesday is minimal.
Signs of Burnout
If every moment you spend working on a project makes you feel miserable, and it’s taking you longer to get certain tasks done, you may be reaching the point of burnout. Burnout can have a variety of physical and mental symptoms. You may become stressed more easily, or have feelings of anxiety or depression. Your energy level will be low, and your work will likely suffer. You may find yourself so worried about your performance that you skip breaks, lunches, time at home, and even vacations.
People who push themselves too hard often experience symptoms of burnout. And, these issues normally only get worse with more work, not better. If you have put so much pressure on yourself that the idea of continuing makes you physically ill, you are definitely over-working.
To combat burnout, you need to set some boundaries regarding how your work and life intermix. If you haven’t taken any time off in a while, it may be ideal to get away from those responsibilities and recharge. And, while you are off work, leave everything at the office. Give yourself a real break from the issues and stresses that have pushed you to this point. It will give you a chance to see that everything will not come crashing down.
Is It the Job?
In some cases, you will be pushed to overwork because that is the nature of the job. If your work is taking over your life in a negative way, it may be time to find something new. Luckily, Advance Staffing Solutions is here to help. Contact us today and see what jobs are available.