Last week I asked ‘What is the biggest obstacle to your wellbeing right now?‘
42% said Inner Doubts/Fears/Worries were the biggest obstacle, with 35% saying ‘Working too Many Hours’.
I find this result interesting because one would appear to be internal factors (inner doubts), while the other would appear to be an external factor, something outside of ourselves that we just have to do. I’d like to address the inner doubts & fears separately, so I’ll come back to this topic next week in my posts.
So what about ‘Working too many hours”, is that within our control? I’ve worked with a lot of people in different companies over the past year, and with nothing else to do during the lockdown, a lot of people just worked. But now we have options, things to do, places to go, people to see (depending on what country you’re based in of course) – so perhaps it’s time to take a good hard look at your current routine of working long hours and make the necessary changes so that you avoid burnout.
What are the real reasons behind your long hours? Are you feeling victim to your workload or are you consciously deciding to work these hours? You’re aware at some level that this is an obstacle to your wellbeing, that you’re stressed or under pressure or feeling overwhelmed.
Are you aware that if your wellbeing is suffering, then so is your performance? Your company does not benefit from you continuously working too long hours, if that continues then productivity goes downhill and burnout happens. It’s a lose-lose situation. Something needs to change, your health and wellbeing are too important. Somehow you need to figure out how to work smarter and not harder (longer hours).
What skills do you need to better manage your time and workload?
What resources do you have access to?
Who could you talk to about this issue?
Is everyone feeling it, in which case it’s an organizational issue that needs to be addressed by the leaders; or are you struggling alone, in which case you need to talk to someone, get support and guidance from your manager, or a coach or mentor.
Hopefully, this has given you some food for thought and perhaps inspired you to take action to improve the situation. Identify even one step that you can take, one small action to get started. Make the change, invest in your wellbeing. Your work will thank you in the long run.