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Study: working too hard is bad for your health – and your career

Why your commitment to your job may be harming both your health and your career

 

According to a study in Industrial and Labor Relations Review, working too hard was strongly correlated to decreased well-being and happiness.  Over-working can have a negative impact on stress, fatigue and job satisfaction.

 

More alarming: the study finds that working too hard or putting in longer hours at work moderately correlates to “inferior” career-related outcomes.  Dedication to your role correlates to less job security, decreased recognition and career stagnation.

 

So if you’re giving yourself over to your work completely, you might actually be hurting your career.  According to the study, this is because working too hard takes such a toll on well-being.

 

The negatives outweigh the positives.  In other words, you might be impressing your boss but at the expense harming your overall mental well-being.

 

The study examined the effects of overtime work and work intensity.  The effects of those job qualities measured well-being, stress, fatigue and job satisfaction.

 

They also examined the overall impact on career consequences like job security, recognition and upward mobility.  The study used data from over 50,000 subjects from 36 European countries.

 

Researchers suggest that employees take more notice of the limitations of working too hard.

 

There are countless studies that stress the importance of flexible working on both happiness and career mobility.  Further, employers should allow workers the freedom to choose the manner in which they fulfill work responsibilities.

 

If you think you may need to change jobs to secure a more healthy work-life balance, make sure to prioritize it with your prospective employer.

 

Obviously, giving less effort in your job isn’t going to land you that promotion.  But this research should serve as a reminder that it’s likely not worth missing dinner and bed time with the family every night in service of your job.

 

As always: all things in perspective.