Work Addiction


In today’s workplace, individuals face the tough challenge of trying to balance their professional and personal lives. With all the responsibilities they have to face at work and at home, it is often difficult to keep their head above water. Work addiction syndrome is a serious problem resulting from an unhealthy “workaholism” or obsession with work; it is indiscriminate and affects every organization or corporation, big or small – even the most talented individuals from every industry or profession. It is an often undiagnosed condition due to its obscure nature; many who suffer from it are not even aware of the nature of the condition or that they are, in fact, suffering from it. What these individuals do realize is that their life has lost all meaning and that it is not a satisfying experience anymore – even when they are working or doing their jobs.

Work addiction is a vicious cycle because it does not provide happiness or satisfaction to “workaholics” even if they dedicate their entire lives to their jobs. This, in turn, drives them to work harder, constantly feeding the work addiction until they are in too deep. Another contributing factor is the fact that workaholics cannot properly gauge their success and feel contented and relaxed about it; they continue to work hard without a tangible goal at hand. Many corporate coaches in the today’s workplace encourage a form of “life balance,” wherein an individual gives equal focus and attention to both the professional and personal aspect of life.

Much like alcoholism or substance abuse, a workaholic can work, as a form of self-medication, in order to cope with or manage emotions and escape unpleasant circumstances or situations. The corporate world is a very competitive arena, and working hard and smart is required to keep ahead and afloat. An excessive obsession with work, however, is unhealthy and can lead to a serious work addiction if not properly monitored.