Anonymous asked in Arts & HumanitiesPhilosophy · 1 month ago

How can I get past my annoyance with workaholics?

I work a standard 40 hour work week, and I am happy working this many hours, in order to have a balanced life with friends and family, and other personal hobbies.

Yet workaholics really get under my skin. It almost feels like these people working longer hours are raising the standard of a hard worker, and make working 40 hours seem lazy. Yet I dont want to strive for their status as harder workers, as I dont want to lose more free time.

So it should stand that I ought not care if others work longer hours than me, when I have chosen to work the standard work week, and value balance. I know this is silly, as I dont want to be outdone, but dont want to lose the work life balance. I know its stupid, but I just have such a hard time getting past this annoyance.

13 Answers

  • 1 month ago

    you feel that with 40 you have a good work/personal life balance, and so by your own standards those workaholics don't have a good balance, so it shouldn't worry you, since your goal is to have time for friends and family and such

  • I still don't understand why they annoy you.  You think work/life balance is more important, so clearly those who do not have it are not "outdoing" you.  Therefore, since you aren't outdone by your standards, there is no source of annoyance.  You should feel sorry for them, or happy for yourself, not jealous of their less than fulfilling lifestyles.

  • Ludwig
    Lv 6
    1 month ago

    Does your company pay standard rate for overtime, or 'time and a half' or something similar? What you do depends on how fit you feel you are.

  • 1 month ago

    as in all things revolving around feelings, the answer lies entirely within you...

    you take pride in working as many hours as you need so that you can achieve "balance" and focus on better things.... and yet you feel resentment toward others because they have different views of work... in effect, letting work negatively affect the contentment that you say is your goal...

    perhaps one reason you're having trouble "getting past" the annoyance is because you are looking in the wrong place for its roots... in other words, forget how others are making you feel and instead examine the feelings themselves..

    ...could it be that you still feel unfulfilled despite your "balanced" life? could it be that its not the hours or the co-workers but the job itself?  if the "balance" isn't enough for you to get past the resentment, then perhaps there are issues with your friends, family and hobbies that need exploration...

    ...look beyond the behavior of others and the judgement you place upon them...resentment (and it's cousin "annoyance") often arises when we feel we are being denied something we want or believe we deserve...

    ..again, take the focus of the "other" and instead consider what you feel you're being denied... that will point you to the things you truly value in life and hopefully the path to changes and actions you need to take for yourself to achieve them...

  • How do you think about the answers? You can sign in to vote the answer.
  • Greg
    Lv 7
    1 month ago

    As long as you are okay with risking layoff and/or smaller raises, go for it.

  • 1 month ago

    Just do your job as prescribed and stop concerning yourself with what others are doing. Once you really start living a balanced life then those people won't even be on your radar.

  • Marli
    Lv 7
    1 month ago

    If your boss is pushing you to work overtime, give him / her C's answer. A farmer has to get the crop harvested or the rain will destroy it and pffft goes the income of a year's work. But you don't have a potential emergency to handle.

    Enjoy your family companionship. Revel in it. If you feel shamed by your co-workers, don't. They chose to work longer. Just work the best you can.

  • j153e
    Lv 7
    1 month ago

    "C" and the others gave full advice.

    Would note that a key is being a good, efficient, and documenting-your-output worker for 40 hours, as C wrote. 

    As a second point, surely your 5 days-a-week post-work are able to be somewhat flexible.  In other words, if there's a genuine management need/perspective for work beyond the 8 hours as a one-time event, or even on an ongoing basis, offer to volunteer for an hour or two; this could be done even once a week.


    Understanding Yourself by Mark Prophet;

    Shop Class as Soul Craft by Matthew Crawford;

    The Quarter-Life Challenge.

  • 1 month ago

    What's the point in life if all you do is work?

  • C
    Lv 7
    1 month ago

    Be really honest with yourself.  Are you working efficiently and giving your job your full attention during working hours?  If you can honestly say that you do this you should also make sure that you keep an independent record of the work that you get done so that if someone points to the workaholic and wonders why you're not like that you can give concrete evidence of your efficiency without having to rely on anyone else to supply it in your defense.  This will lift a lot of your unease.

    I'm going to annoy a lot of workaholics in this, but it's been by experience that humans can only sustain really good work in long hours for a limited amount of time.  We've always been like this - chasing down the wooly rhino when the opportunity presents itself or getting the roof on or hay in before the rainy season hits.  Have you ever worked with anyone fresh of a pipeline or road scheme?  Those jobs are brutal with long hours and 6.5 day weeks.  However, humans can't sustain a good pace in those conditions for long so everything and everybody slows down.  Meeting or working with someone fresh off a job like that is like meeting someone trapped in a parallel dimension that moves in slow motion.  Working all those hours isn't as efficient as it seems on paper and that's before accounting for increased near misses, accidents, and mistakes due to fatigue.

    I freely admit that there's little that annoys me more than "presenteeism."  I don't think that making a performance of being present for long hours adds anything positive to a workplace as these same people not only waste energy of this piece of performance theater but are often more than a bit slapdash and feel entitled to mess around on the job as a "reward" for their long hours.  Presenteeism is distinct from people putting more in during unexpected or seasonal busy periods, but as they say, "the squeaky wheel gets greased," which is why it's important to keep that record of what you can achieve during your contracted hours by being focussed on your job and bringing that up with the evidence during performance reviews and to shut up the people who like to drone on about how they only sleep three hours a night because they're so devoted to their job.  Good for you having your own life and setting boundaries!

Still have questions? Get your answers by asking now.