Six signs you’re working too hard

Finding it difficult to switch off?

Working hard at your job is a great way to get ahead in your career and earn bonus points at work. But if you overdo it, you could start to notice some negative effects – both in your quality of work, and in your health and wellbeing.

To make sure you’re not burning yourself out, here are six signs you’re working too hard:


You have no social life  

You haven’t just lost your work/life balance. You’ve lost it so badly, you’ve fallen down, and you can’t get back up.

It can be all too easy to overlook how often you’re turning down social invites. But when you always seem to put off personal plans because of work, it’s probably time to seriously evaluate your situation.

Always try and take a break from work when you’re invited to do something social – even if it’s only a quick after-work drink. At the very least it will stop your housemates wondering whether you’re still alive because they haven’t seen you in a week.

Let’s face it, no one wants to be the person that always says no.


No one can keep up with you

There’s being admired for what you do, and there’s being avoided at all costs because of it.

If you notice your colleagues don’t want to work with you on group projects – it might be time to take a step back and ask yourself why. Is your full-on work ethic too much pressure for them? Would they rather go home at 5pm instead of working all night?

Not everyone can handle a 24/7 work timetable, so it might be time to scale it back, set some boundaries, and keep your colleagues’ feelings in mind.

Especially if you’re working on collaborative tasks and team assignments.


Your body is starting to rebel

If you’re working too hard, your body will tell you.

People react to stress in a number of different ways, and whether you’re losing or gaining weight, suffering from mysterious migraines, or having trouble sleeping, it usually comes down to the same thing – you’re not giving yourself enough of a break.

Instead of ignoring your body’s signals to slow down, consider that your excessive workload could be the cause. You’d be surprised at what adopting a healthier lifestyle, adjusting your behaviour, and focusing on something other than work can do for your wellbeing.


Your productivity is dropping

A lack of productivity is often a clear sign of overworking.

Whether you’re starting to slack with the quality of your work, you’ve developed a negative attitude, or you’re just no longer feeling motivated to do a good job – it could all indicate a burnout. Other clues include tiredness, irritability, and apathy.

And the only way to get back on track is to take a break. Not only will you be able to recharge and feel better, you’ll also come back to your work with a more proactive mindset.


You’re always in a bad mood

Your job has a big impact on your mood – even when you’re not actually working.

So although it might seem like you’re genuinely angry about a queue of traffic, or an overly small portion of food you got at a restaurant (you definitely ordered large fries), minor inconveniences might not be the real root of your problem.

If you feel the need to complain more often than not, ask yourself why. Putting too much energy into your work might mean that you don’t have any tolerance left to actually enjoy your free time.


You can’t switch off

Can’t get the grind off your mind? It might be time to tone down the hard work…

You might feel like you have to refresh your emails while you’re watching TV, make business calls at dinner, or find taking your laptop on holiday is an absolute necessity, just so you can update that all-important spreadsheet at the beach. Even ‘dream you’ can’t catch a break.

To combat work calling you 24/7, start scheduling in some space to unwind. In other words, completely clear your head of work, and take a genuine rest from it. No emails. No calls. Just ‘me time’.

Because too much of anything is never a good idea (even if you really love your job).


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