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How to Break Your Addiction to Work

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https://hbr.org/2016/05/how-to-break-your-addiction-to-work

hbr.org

How to Break Your Addiction to Work
For many of us, working simply feels good. But just because it feeds your ego or makes you feel important, that doesn't mean it's actually good for you. How do you break the cycle of working long hours at the office and constantly checking email at home?

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An Unbalanced Life

We live in a culture where work demands our complete allegiance. At the same time, it can be extremely enriching. You feel challenged by your work, you're attached to it, you're learning new things...

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Redefine Success

Reconsider how you define success. Workaholics are always aiming to get ahead. But you also need to draw a boundary line that shows respect for your family life, and your physical and spiritual wel...

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Refocus Your Attention

After you have redefined success, consider how you want to invest your time and energy. 

There will always be more work to be done, but make a choice to spend your time elsewhere: ...

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Reset Expectations

When trying to break an addiction, enlist the help of family, friends or colleagues for accountability and support.

Reset the expectations of your boss and coworkers. Be clear about the chang...

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Digital Detox

For digital detoxing, experiment with different solutions.

  • Put your smartphone away. Put your smartphone out of reach after the workday is done.
  • Don't use your pho...

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Practice Mindfulness

Mindfulness is practicing nonjudgmental awareness in the present moment.

Mindfulness can be helpful for trying to break addiction to work. It helps you to get a sense of control and be delibe...

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Prioritizing Health

You can work productively in a creative way for only a certain number of hours per day. Even then, you need proper sleep, nutrition, and exercise for more energy and better focus.

Also consid...

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Principles To Remember

Do:

  • Redefine personal success to be more about high-quality relationships, community engagement, and physical and spiritual wellness.
  • Be intentional about how you choose to spend...

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The signs of burnout

  • You dread going to work in the morning.
  • You show up late or find reasons to leave early.
  • You feel bored or don’t want to engage with the work when you’re there.
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Find friends outside of work

If your only friends are your friends at work, it'll be more challenging to avoid work on evenings and weekends. If you do have coworkers as close friends, consider setting some boundaries around work talk.

Try to avoid getting drawn into office drama, as it will increase the time you spend talking and thinking about work.

Speak up

Speak up when your workload is too much. Tell your boss if you are stretched too thin or when you regularly work too many hours. Talk about what you can reasonably get done in a week.

Also, don't say yes to everything. If you have a hard time saying no, don't respond immediately. Instead say, "Let me get back to you", or, "Let me think about that."

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Working From Home

Working from home means that all the chaos of your home (pets, family members, kids, and kitchen noises) is part of your entire workday.

Self-Discipline, concentration and work ethic are need...

Working is From Anywhere

WFH (Work From Home) eventually means you are working from coffee shops, parking lots, from your car while driving, and almost anywhere you can log in to your laptop or communicate on your phone.

No one knows where you are and what you are doing, and that can be an advantage, but also can be misused. 

Start Early and Mimic Office Time

The schedule that makes you start early, and mimic the office hours works best, as you end up being free earlier too. However, night owls may find working at night to be more productive or comfortable for them.

Maintaining a schedule in a routine, while incorporating regular exercise with it, works best.

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