Recently, I had a conversation with a supervisor of an organization of about 300 people. She was telling me that she has to work all of the time, even when she is at home in order to keep up with her work. I asked her “How was that going for you?” and her reply was, “It’s what I need to do in order to keep my job and that is just the way it is.” I asked her “If she thought she would be more productive at work if she took more time for herself and family?” She really hadn’t given that any thought because it was not realistic with the demands of her job. As I left the building I was pretty sad for this woman. I knew she was a mother of an elementary-age child and her spouse also has a pretty demanding job. I kept asking myself, “Is it really worth it?” This situation is not rare, in fact, it is pretty common nowadays. If your job has become your life and you’re wondering if you need to do something about it, ask your self the following questions:
- Do I feel my life overall will be better by doing this job this way?
- Is there a way I could do this job without causing distress to my life?
- How much has my life changed by doing this job for the good and for the worse?
- Would I do this again knowing what I know now?
Ultimately each of us individually can only make the determination for ourselves and sometimes it is only when we have hindsight that we wish we would have done things differently. These are great questions to ask even if your job is not as demanding as this woman’s. I think by answering them honestly it can keep us on course with what our goals and standards are when it comes to our career.