Chronic workaholics have become part of my life. Some influence me and several are in constant recovery mode. One just started living on a boathouse hoping that the sound of ripples will ease the impact of work-related stress.
In 2012, I want all my friends to stay away from work-related stress. Our collective workaholism will have no impact on our already stressed, chronically exploited, seven billion plus Planet Earth. So, here are 10 tips to maintain a safe distance from friends, co-workers, bosses, family members, insane relatives and employers who want to make you do more at any cost.
- Learn to say the 2-letter word we seldom say: NO. To your manager, to your nagging friend, to your employer for demands that extend beyond your work day.
- Consider work as an eight-hour fun ride. Plan well, be shrewd and look for stars beyond sunset and not project deadlines.
- Outdo your employer’s expectations every day. Be creative and you can get it done.
- Network. Find friends outside your profession and learn new things after work. Develop a business plan for a new venture that you like and always have a Plan B and a solid exit strategy.
- Join an association that has ties to your profession or volunteer at a civic group. Make sure it’s interesting and fun to do.
- Check if the sky is still blue- at least once a day. This will remind you that there are better things in life than work, bosses, co-workers, projects, deadlines, social media sites and electronic gadgets. Make sure you exercise and just 30 minutes is fine.
- Find “me time” at least once a week. This will get you a greater return than your paycheck in the long run.
- Wind down on Fridays. This is a must-do and make it a point to have fun.
- “Be present,” with your family once you are at home. Don’t think of that last freaking email from your co-worker at 5 p.m. when your kid needs your attention. The rest can wait.
- Don’t waste money on self-help books. Learn to say NO and the world will take care of itself.