Work is necessary both to ensure our livelihoods and to develop good self-esteem; by feeling useful, we learn to believe in ourselves. However, like any habit, an excess of work can damage our physical and mental health with amazing ease.
That’s why it’s important to always control the amount of work we face on a daily basis, on the one hand, and the way we react to it, on the other. Otherwise, the logic of productivity will drag us down to making professional work our reason for living, which cannot be healthy.
These are the effects of overwork
To prevent problems related to overwork, we must know how to recognize the warnings that the body sends us. Below you can see what they are and how they are expressed in your body.
This is the clearest consequence of all. It is a feeling of unease and alertness which, in turn, makes it more difficult for us to face the challenges ahead. Anxiety makes us always active but at the same time we are afraid to think about our responsibilities, so we put off some of them. This procrastination contributes to the accumulation of obligations.
Burnout syndrome is a psychological and physical condition typical of demanding work environments and with little ability to respond to the needs of professionals. It consists of a mixture of depersonalization, crisis due to the absence of motivational expectations, and anxiety generated by work stagnation and monotony.
It should be noted that the Burnout Syndrome does not necessarily arise from overwork, but rather from repetition and lack of time to take a break from the work context . Thus, taking time to replenish one’s energy and clear one’s mind usually helps, but in other cases it is necessary to change one’s occupation to feel good.
3. Work Addiction
Paradoxically, overwork can make us even more enslaved under the yoke of future tasks to be performed and needs to be met. Why? Because the fact that we have gone through hard and unpleasant situations to reach the goals we have set makes us deny less margin to choose if in the future we will be in a similar situation again.
Simply, the possibility of having our project or company damaged by our inability to work more seems an intolerable idea in view of the sacrifices we have had to make so that this initiative does not fail.
On the other hand, we run the risk of normalizing overwork, assuming the belief that always being overloaded is what can always be expected, the normal. From this point of view, avoiding working more or taking a break is irresponsible.
4. Carpal tunnel syndrome
It is one of the most common physical problems among workers who use computers a lot, such as administrative, computer or writing staff. It appears when having the hand in the same position to use the keyboard causes one of the nerves in the hand to be pressed at wrist level.
5. Lumbar pain
As the workload accumulates, we are much less likely to perform the tasks necessary to work while maintaining standards of well-being, and taking breaks to change posture or stretch our legs is one such option.
Sitting all the time in the two or three positions that we think help us produce faster damages both our muscles and the joints of our spine . Over time, it helps us to adopt that stooped position when walking or standing.
ouble sleeping is common when there is too much work. The causes of this are rumination and recurring thoughts based on one’s obligations, as well as disruption of working hours and excessive use of screens.
7. Gastric problems
The digestive system is very sensitive to stress and anxiety problems, so overwork feels like a hammer to its functioning. This causes gas, diarrhoea and other complications to appear. Not only are they annoying, but they clearly affect all the other functions that take place in our body. At the end of the day, we are what we eat, which includes how we assimilate food.
8. Cardiovascular problems
This problem is related to poor management of anxiety, which becomes chronic, and to poor diet and exercise habits that are a consequence of lack of time to exercise and eat healthy. Hypertension is the alarm signal .