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Are You Addicted To Your Job?

Joanna Clare

There are many of us who like our job or indeed love the job that we do but we know when to draw the line and to switch off. Although dedicated to the job we have, once the uniform comes off or the clock on the office wall tells us that our shift is finished or even once we arrive home after leaving the work environment, we tend to leave thoughts of work behind us.

Our work is done and now we have time to concentrate on all the other important aspects of life that require our attention such as home, family commitments and most importantly of all, giving ourselves some time out. We need a healthy balance yet unfortunately statistics show that around 40% of the UK’s population find it difficult to switch off from work and in turn stress levels are increasing.

Work can be stressful, there's no doubt about that but it is how we manage that stress that is important and this is where it is essential to learn to keep work segregated from everything else that we have going on in our lives. Of course, even when we are not at work it is totally normal for certain aspects of it to cross our mind but the important thing here is we can put it on the backburner.

People can become addicted to their job for several reasons . We often describe someone who seems to be always working to be a workaholic. Some people can quite happily work over and above their hours yet have the insight to identify when enough is enough but there are others who will continue.

Often high performing perfectionists, people who have the sole focus of success, high achievements and financial accomplishments will be driven by these goals. As with all addictions, there is a good feeling that is derived from overworking but the more you do it, the more you crave it and it becomes a vicious cycle.

Similarly, a person who wishes to escape their own reality may throw themselves into work which then validates as an excuse not to deal with what is really happening such as family or personal problems as they perceive themselves as far too busy.

The behaviour can often have a massive impact on their mental health, their personal life and lives of others around them.

Some of the signs of work addiction can include behaviours such as sleep irregularities, irritability, obsession with work related issues, regularly arriving to work early and leaving far later than is necessary, working on evenings, days off and annual leave. Having little or no other interest than work, inability to  focus on anything other than work, feeling angry if you are unable to work for any reason and putting work first are all indicative of work addiction.

As with any addiction, it is imperative to seek help.Time out, acceptance of the addiction and reflection will be of enormous personal benefit but it is often not as simple as this and it is important to seek and accept help and advice from professionals who can offer therapeutic support.

Looking for a new career in Manchester? Why not attend our upcoming Manchester Careers Fair, taking place on Friday 5th August at the Britannia Hotel. Attending a careers fair is a great way of meeting face-to face with employers and discovering new opportunities within a chosen industry or multiple sectors in your local area.

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