One of the two things I don’t want to do every day is overwork. I have it in writing in my 10-year, 5-year, and 1-year vision statements in my Hero On A Mission (HOAM) Life Plan. The reason I chose this as one of two actions I will avoid is because my tendency is to overwork. I do so in ways that end up hurting me, rather than helping me. I’ve seen it time and time again in my life.
I like to Be Busy
I like to juggle lots of projects at the same time. I’m very curious and love learning and trying new things. I love to try out new ideas. I struggle to say “no” when people ask me to do something for them. Not overworking is a real struggle for me.
Overwork’s Pros and Cons
When I fall into the temptation to overwork, I usually get positive affirmation from others. I either helped someone out, finished a project on time, followed through on a commitment (I shouldn’t have made in the first place), or I let my self-worth get tied up with accomplishment.
But the price that I pay isn’t worth what I get in return.
- I don’t get enough sleep.
- My muscles get strained and tight.
- I wake up groggy.
- I usually have a headache the next day.
- I don’t have good energy for two, three, sometimes four days afterward.
- I am less fun to be around.
- I probably stole time from my family to finish the work.
It helps me to be reminded of my commitment to not overwork every time I read my HOAM Vision Statements. It’s like someone I respect coming alongside me, putting their arm around my shoulder and encouraging me, “Don’t forget what’s most important, Glen. You can NOT do this! And it’s worth it!” I need that kind of emotional support to break out of an all to familiar habit in my life. My vision statements actually provide that support for me.
I’m on the front end of adhering to my commitment to not overwork. I still fail. But I’m more conscious of what I’ve done when I do overwork. I’m more aware of the negative consequences that follow that overwork. And most importantly, I’m overworking less than before and trending in the right direction.