You'll go far if you're dedicated, determined and willing to work a bit of overtime, but you can take it too far. Take this quiz to find out if you're spending too much time tucked inside a cubicle, neglecting everything (and everyone) else in your life.
How many hours per day should you spend at work?
Clocking in a bit of OT every now and again is a good thing, but working after hours every day can take a toll on you. Ideally, you should be working 8 to 8 1/2 hours per day. If all your daylight hours are spent inside an office, or you consider your 40-hours-per-week colleagues part-time employees, you're a workaholic.
Your son's birthday is the day after tomorrow, but so is a major work-related deadline. Your job has been taking up so much of your time, you haven't even picked out his present yet. What do you do?
Not surprisingly, workaholics tend to focus on work first and foremost. If you're a true workaholic, leaving early is out of the question, and even taking the time to search for a gift online is asking too much. But here's a hint: Stuffed animals and hastily purchased Internet goods aren't enough, and your family relationships are going to suffer if you can't take time for life outside the office.
Which of the following personality traits best describes you?
Most workaholics are not easygoing, carefree people. They tend to be perfectionists and enjoy the feeling of control that work gives them. Of course, that doesn't mean they'll admit to it. If you describe yourself as an easygoing type but others view you as bossy or work-obsessed, take some time off to restore your sanity!
You work to:
Workaholics live to work, not work to live. Many focus on their work to avoid problems in their personal lives, such as a bad relationship or fear of commitment. Just try to remember that you're at the office to earn a paycheck, not run the company (and even if you do actually run the company, you still need to take a break).
You spend most of your time at the office:
There's nothing wrong with rolling up your sleeves to focus on and finish the task at hand, but if you spend much of the workday focusing on trivial details no one else cares about or trying to find more work to do, you're a workaholic. In fact, even though you probably work longer hours, chances are you're more inefficient than your fellow 9-to-5ers.
Working long hours tends to make you feel:
If your principle means of solace is work, watch out. Workaholics feel most at peace on the job. They may complain about not having a social life or gripe about keeping long hours, but they never do anything about it. So if that sounds even a bit like you, go home early, call some friends and go out on the town. You'll be better for it -- and so will the quality of your work!
When you're not working, you tend to feel:
Workaholics only feel at ease while working, so their time away from the office is usually burdened with feelings of anxiety and restlessness. This, of course, tends to make them tired, grouchy and less efficient on the job, though they'll never admit it. If you find yourself jonesing for a job fix in the long hours of the evening, it's time to take an impromptu leave of absence.
While waiting for a coworker to finish a task, you:
Despite the countless studies that show workaholics are inefficient employees, workaholics are always convinced they're the only ones who can do the job right and that all the rest of their coworkers are incompetent. They try to tell everyone else how to do their job, so they're frustrating to work with and make poor bosses. Therefore, if you're convinced you're the only one who knows how to do your colleagues' jobs, there's a good chance the office's biggest problem is you, not them.
During your lunch break, you usually:
Workaholics tend to eat, breathe, and sleep their job, so if you can't stop working long enough to eat a little lunch, chances are you're a workaholic. Other signs you work a little too much? You converse about your job nonstop. No one likes a one-trick work pony, so if this sounds like you, gallop away from the office and graze the fields of other, more interesting thoughts and topics.
You're most comfortable when your workload is:
Since workaholics feel most at ease on the job, they tend to overcommit themselves. They live for impossible workloads, mountains of pressure and stress, but by taking on more than they can handle, they often end up burning themselves out and do a disservice to their employer. Focused workers prefer manageable workloads; anything too light can lead to boredom and frustration. Bottom line? You should breathe a sigh of relief, not have a nervous breakdown, when you finish an assignment.
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