From distress to de-stress
For better or worse, work is a huge part of our lives. But that doesn’t mean overtime is obligatory. Most people who work too much wouldn’t have to sacrifice a single necessity to cut back on their hours. The following pointers can help you get your life back on track.
Know your goals. Some people never stop to question why they’re doing the job they do. Are you on the career track you really want? If not, what do you want to be doing and how can you make it possible? One study of 8,000 people found that an essential key to human happiness is loving your everyday profession.
Slow down. Force yourself to reclaim your personal life. Schedule dates with your friends and partner or spouse. Plan social outings in advance and treat those commitments as seriously as you would a business meeting.
Use visual cues. Keep a picture of someone you love in your wallet and on your desk. These can provide an instant “reality check” and help you relax in moments of stress.
Start an accomplishment journal. At the end of each day, jot down one thing that you feel good about having accomplished at your job and one thing you feel good about having done for yourself or with friends or family. Reading this diary can help you figure out what is making you happy and what isn't. The patterns you discover will help you make better decisions in the future.
Get help. Overwork that never ends can be serious stuff—a matter of life and death in some cases. So, if you have a hard time taking these steps on your own, seek help from a counselor, psychotherapist, or your company's employee assistance program.