Each year July 5th is National Workaholics Day. Yes, it is true, and please notice, it is a national event, not a global event. No surprise there. Americans work 137 more hours per year than Japanese workers, 260 more hours per year than British workers, and 499 more hours per year than French workers according to the International Labor Organization.
Are You a Workaholic?
A workaholic is typically defined as a person who feels the need to be busy. Most researchers define a workaholic as a person who works excessively and compulsively and is unable to detach from work. A good and strong work ethic is particularly important to one’s career success however, a healthy balance between career and personal life is the key to life’s success and good health. Balance, as with most things, is key.
Too much work, no fun?
Work-life balance can seem like an impossible achievement. Technology makes us accessible around the clock. Fear of job loss incentivizes longer hours. In a recent Harvard Business School survey, a whopping 94% of working professionals reported working more than 50 hours per week and nearly half said they worked more than 65 hours per week. Experts agree: the compounding stress from the never-ending workday is damaging. It can hurt relationships, health, and overall happiness.
Work-life balance can seem like an impossible achievement.
So, are you a workaholic and will you be celebrating on July 5th? Not sure, well here are some indicators that may help determine if you are a workaholic.
Do you never stop working?
Do you take work with you to bed, on weekends or on vacation, that is if you take vacations?
Is work the activity you do best and talk about the most?
Do you think it is OK to work long hours, especially if you love what you do?
Do you do things energetically and competitively, including play?
Have long hours worked hurt your relationships and/or family life?
Is your sleep inadequate or disturbed?
Do you often skip meals or rely on take-out (fast food) for quick meals?
Are you oblivious or maybe consciously unconcerned of the health risks of too much work and not enough play?
What first comes into your mind you want to do instead of working? Please share below.
I’d like to share with you a story by a man I have great respect for and find him as a well of knowledge and inspiration. You have already had the opportunity to read some of his tips in my previous blogs.
Dr Gary Lindner’s personal story
I have never considered myself a workaholic but given some of these traits maybe I am, more accurately I was. In my early career work always came first. I remember my Dad saying many times when I was young, “first the work then play”. However, in those years, the play just didn’t seem to happen. I often rationalized that my love of my profession and my efforts to be the best I could be justified my choices. This is a common rationalization and we often feel that we are doing it for the good of our family, our company, our career. Is this a healthy way to live? In a word, NO!
‘Be Healthy by Choice’ mission
As a self-care advocate and given our battle cry of Be Healthy by Choice, I now understand the health ramifications of being a workaholic. Although I would have considered myself to be healthy during these years, I now fully appreciate that I was not and was, in reality, a ticking time bomb waiting to explode. Poor sleep, inadequate hydration, poor diet, and very fast-paced career with nearly constant travel all started to manifest itself with chronic conditions that I ignored. Faced with a choice of my health or my career I set a plan to balance my work and my life.
In Harmony with work and life
Often, work takes precedence over everything else in our lives. Our desire to be successful professionally can drive us to set aside our own well-being. Creating a harmonious work-life balance is critical to improving not only our physical, emotional, and mental well-being, but it is also paramount for our careers.
A company offers a philosophy of 5 pillars of health
After observing that I often spent all night in the lab on my research project, my graduate school college mentor counselled me that work is just one part of life and that we all need to create a balance in the areas of our life that support our aspirations in intellectual, physical, emotional and financial health. Good advice from an incredibly wise man. All too often things go in one ear and out the other, or as it has been said when the student is ready, the teacher will appear. In my case, it was 20 years later when Nikken and the Five Pillars of Wellness appeared, and I was ready to listen and learn.
I was in my late 40’s and started to wonder what else is there in life.
Your success starts with 5-inch space between your ears.
Nikken Corporate offers a personal development course, Human’s Being More. It is currently being offered virtually and is a great place to start if you are looking to add more work-life harmony to your life. Nikken’s Chancellor of Nikken University, Jeff Isom, is an awesome trainer and not only does the class provide insights into creating a balanced life but also includes follow up sessions and ongoing personal development training. Anyone 16 years or older (or mature enough to sit still for 5 hours) can enrol in the class at a great value of $ £19. The next class is scheduled for Saturday, July 18th. For more information contact Heather or me at the selcarehub.com or the person that shared this blog with you.
Have a happy Workaholics Day!
Be Healthy by Choice, Not by Chance!
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Helping You Create Healthier Life in 5 Areas
Skype: Lucie Patel Varekova
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