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Being overworked means that a person is working too many hours, taking on too much responsibility, or experiencing a high level of work-related stress. It can lead to physical and mental tiredness, burnout, and other negative effects on well-being and productivity.
One of the fallouts of an increasingly uncertain business scenario and 24/7 global connectivity at the workplace is the pressure on overworked employees to stretch work hours beyond the normal schedule. Companies are guilty of encouraging the culture of overwork, as somewhere along the way, working more has been confused with working well. Executives willingly stretch their workdays and work well into midnight, assuming they are building their careers with the hard work they are putting in. They are messing up their health and social lives while putting everything else, except work, on the back burner.
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Effective resume making, job hunting, campus recruitment training & othersWhat happens when we are… Overworked at the Individual Level?
Lack of sleep and relaxation
Hypertension and heart trouble
Lack of social interaction and leisureOverworked at the Organizational Level?
Health costs of employees
Poor quality of work
Workplace conflicts and flare-ups
If being overworked is so bad, why do companies encourage it? And more importantly, why do employees stress themselves out by working to the bone?
Are you also one of those employees who find themselves willingly or unwillingly saddled with additional work that stretches beyond the normal workday? If yes, then it is time.Reasons For Being Overworked
I am a fresher and need to work hard to prove myself.
My boss stays at the office late, so I must follow suit.
I have so much work; I can’t finish during normal working hours.
If I leave the office on time, my competitor will get an edge over me.
If you have selected the first reason, let me tell you that as a fresher, you need to work smart, not more. As far as handling extra workload is concerned, we will come to that shortly.
If your boss is a workaholic, avoid being cooped up with them. You have to follow the same work pattern whether you like it or not.
If you cannot complete your allotted work within the normal hours, check your work style. Are you spending too much time running unnecessary errands, or are you unable to concentrate on one thing at a time?
The key to successful work performance is being effective and not hyperactive.How do you realize that you are overworked?
You reach the office early, start working immediately, and barely stop for a coffee or a bite.
At everyone’s beck and call, always available.
Don’t say no to any work request, and take on all kinds of assignments.
Find it difficult to complete the day’s work within the stipulated office hours.
Carry work home and often sacrifice your sleep trying to complete tasks.
Continually running behind schedule and unable to hand in work on time.
Have zero social life; whenever anyone calls you for a get-together or friends meet, you plead for work engagements.
You have recently developed health issues like acidity, heartburn, anxiety, and sleeplessness.
You must ring the warning bell if you find yourself nodding to any of the above.
Things are unlikely to change overnight, but some thinking will help you deal with the situation better.Deal with being Overworked in the Workplace #1. Overworked- Prioritize and Manage Time
All tasks you deal with are not equally urgent or important. Make a checklist according to importance and urgency, and set aside time to finish those accordingly. You will feel that you are handling the essential things first and gain a sense of control over your overworked schedule.#2. Overworked- Do One Thing at a Time #3. Overworked- Delegate Small Tasks to Others
You need not do everything yourself. Simple. A clerk can be in charge of taking printouts. An operator can handle the entries. A telecaller can call up customers on your behalf. The final responsibility of getting the job done rests with you, but the nitty-gritty by the junior staff. Be careful, however, to ensure that each of the delegates reports the status of the work to you.#4. Overworked- Ask for Assistance
Seek an appointment with your boss, and state the facts as they are. Say you have too much on your plate and find it difficult to chew all you have bitten off. You need help. So the boss either relieves you from some duties and delegates some responsibilities or provides you with some kind of assistance.#5. Overworked- Take Short Breaks from Work
Walk around, stretch, and take coffee breaks. The world will not come crashing down if you are absent from your desk for a few minutes. Also, try going out for lunch occasionally instead of eating a sandwich daily. Please understand these short breaks help you work better after coming back refreshed.#6. Overworked- Switch Off Notifications
Set aside time for checking your inbox and replying to urgent emails. Non-urgent emails can wait. You need not check everything as and when the notification bell rings. Emails and chat notifications are extremely distracting and waste valuable hours. Keep your mobile on silent mode while doing important work requiring concentration.#7. Overworked- Don’t Take Work Home
Yes, yes, you are running behind schedule. Have to submit that report tomorrow. The presentation needs last-minute touch-ups. Once in a while is okay, but don’t make it a habit to bring work home. Think of your home as a sanctuary, a place to escape the grind. Don’t carry work and extend your office to your home. Finish work in the office as much as possible.#8. Overworked- Get Some Exercise
Regular exercise will relieve a lot of your stress and anxiety, besides keeping you fit and healthy. Exercise releases good chemicals in the brain that make us feel cheerful and optimistic. Work-related stress can be avoided by jogging, walking, swimming, or playing sports.#9. Overworked- Take Time to Smell the Flowers #10. Overworked- Eat Nourishing Food
Grabbing a pizza or a burger daily? Guzzling unlimited coffee to keep away hunger pangs and exhaustion? Surviving on cans of cola for the sugar rush and energy boost? Stop immediately. Normal, home-cooked food nourishes our bodies and nerves. Try to eat healthy as much as you can. You will be able to deal with work stress better.#11. Overworked- Use Relaxation Techniques
Your body is overworked; it needs rest or will break down. Try yoga or meditation to relax your mind and body. Deep breathing also helps in calming frayed nerves.#12. Overworked- Try to Sleep at Regular Timings
Resist the urge to work late into the night. Your body clock will go haywire, and you will miss out on a good night’s sleep that is essential for your body to repair itself. And please remember that nothing is worth losing sleep for.#13. Overworked- Use Positive Thinking
Tell yourself you are just doing a job. The world won’t end if the job is delayed. Yes, there will be disruptions at work, and maybe your boss will shout at you. But that is not worth taking so much heartburn for. And at the end of the day, you will have other options in the form of new job opportunities. It’s simply not worth losing your health.Conclusion
There is a saying that hard work has never killed anyone. But in today’s day and age, overwork does kill, if not instantly, slowly but surely.
We need to guard ourselves against falling into the trap of becoming burdened and laden with overwork.
If you have not acted yet, do so now. Do not put your health and sanity at risk. Speak to your boss now. Ask for help. Delegate. Relax.
Don’t take chances till it is too late. Deal with being overworked. Now.
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