Family Ministry

advice, thoughts, and discussion

Are you a Workaholic?

on October 9, 2012

I like my job. I’m lucky enough to work with kids(which I love), work with people who I like, and I get to do things that I am gifted in doing. But, I think some of us like our jobs too much. We tend to extend our work hours into time that we should be spending with our spouse or our kids. We’ve always praised people who are workaholics, but can being a workaholic be detrimental to your life?

First, let’s see if you’re a workaholic. If you agree to 50% or more of these statements, you’re guilty!

    1. In the free time spent with your friends and family you are talking about work and what you will have to do.
    2. You promise your spouse you will be home for dinner in half an hour but, there will be another couple of hours until you arrive.
    3. You forget to call your family or to take your child from swimming classes because you are working too much.
    4. When it comes to lunch, you skip it constantly or rather eat some junk food.
    5. Even if you get home early you are taking work to finish it home.
    6. Week-ends are not the time to spend with your family. You must work on the project for the next week.
    7. At the end of the day the cleaning person has to wheel you and your chair aside to be able to clean the office.
    8. You enjoy extreme competitiveness but you also need to be in control.
    9. Multi – tasking is not an option for you, it’s the only option.
    10. You are living with nothing else in mind but work.

Did you think of yourself while reading at least 5 of these statements? I know I did. How can workaholics break the cycle of addiction? The first step is recognizing the problem. Whether we’re bona fide volunteeraholics or simply over-functioning parents who have taken on too much, we need to ask ourselves: In our drive to create an illusion of self-worth that’s based on what we accomplish, are we doing irreparable damage to our children, family and friends? If so, what are we going to do about it?

10 steps to finding balance

  • Acknowledge you have a problem.
  • Be accountable to someone for your schedule.
  • Cut out half of your outside involvement.
  • Don’t add a new activity to your schedule without eliminating another.
  • Allow time in your schedule for doing nothing.
  • Set a time budget and live within it.
  • Forget quality time — it’s quantity time that counts.
  • Cherish the time you have with your children now. It can never be reclaimed.
  • Maintain your perspective. There’s a time for everything; maybe it’s just not now.
  • If you’re a workaholic, get help before it’s too late.

I know some of you aren’t taking this seriously, but as I am, my parents were workaholics while I was growing up. They would often leave for work at 7am and not return home until 7pm. My grandmother practically raised me. I never spent time with my parents, and because of that I resented them for many years. I am so thankful that my husband and I have decided before we have kids that we are going to set aside time for each other and for our kids.

What do you do to make sure you turn your “work mode” off?


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