Take this Quiz! Are You a Work Junkie?

January 13, 2008 at 4:04 am 1 comment

work junkie quiz

Does what you do drive how you feel about yourself? Take this quiz and find out.

1. When a project I’m leading goes really well, I:
      A. Get a great big boost, I feel validated for my skills.
      B. Feel a sense of accomplishment.
      C. Think, “Thank god Fred was on this project because if he wasn’t I would’ve really blown it.”

2. When something goes wrong at work that needs my attention I:
      A. Immediately feel anxious and responsible for the problem.
      B. Calmly address the problem to the best of my ability.
      C. Seek to defend myself from being blamed for the problem.

3. My email behavior could be described as:
      A. My name is ______ and I’m a crackberry addict, I don’t let anything slip by.
      B. I check it between tasks periodically throughout the work day.
      C. I ignore it until someone emails me 3 times.

4. When my co-workers leave for the day, they say this to me:
      A. Don’t stay all night!
      B. Have fun at your yoga/ceramics class/kid’s play tonight!
      C. Nothing – they don’t want to get sucked in to a bitch session when they’re out the door.

5. My work style could be described as:
      A. Highly competent – I have to push hard and stay right on top of tasks and people to make sure my work gets done.
      B. Highly engaged – I really enjoy my work and the people I work with. I give it my best each day and then let it go.
      C. Highly anxious – I worry a lot about my work, how I’m doing, and how others view my work.

6. Sunday night I feel:
       A. Tired because I’ve been working, checking email or thinking about work all weekend.
       B. Excited to get back to work, I have all these great ideas…
       C. An impending sense of doom about going to work on Monday.

Give yourself 4 points for any “A” or “C” answer, 2 points for any “B” answer.

21 – 24 points. I hate to say it, but you’re a Work Junkie.
A high score indicates you’re letting your work define who you are. In other words, you’re getting a self-esteem “fix” by achieving at work. When things go well at work, this can feel really good. The problem is when things don’t go well, your own self-worth is now contingent on outside activities, not your intrinsic value. This means your own value is now contingent on Jack in project management doing his job, Jill in accounting doing hers, and Joe in engineering doing his. Think about it, how can a project launch date sliding or a botched presentation define YOU? Chances are that you find work stressful and unrewarding. Check out the Work Detox section for tips on dealing with your “addiction”.

16 – 20 points. Work is working you.
A middle-of-the-road score indicates there’s some work you could do to feel better about your work life. Don’t settle for a ho-hum worklife, you can wake up excited to go to work! Sometimes getting there means a total career overhaul, other times a little attitude check can do wonders. Awareness of what’s tripping you up is the first step to moving past it. Try some tips from the Work Detox section and see if your score improves.

12 – 15 You’re workin’ it!
Congratulations! You have a healthy attitude toward work and likely life in general. You feel confident in your skills and abilities and aren’t looking to anyone else to validate your worth. You’re also more likely to have a healthy work/life balance. Still wouldn’t hurt to check out Work Detox and add anything useful to your worklife coping toolkit.

Work Detox
Here are some tools to help you detox from your work “addiction.” When I say addiction, I don’t necessarily mean overwork (athough that can definitely be part of it), it’s looking for things outside of you to validate how you feel inside. Doing this causes stress and unhappiness, especially when these outside factors don’t cooperate and give you the validation you’re looking for!

To start your Work Detox, ask yourself these questions:

What’s the worst thing that could happen?
Stress is caused by believing something bad will happen to you when the crapola hits the fan. Asking yourself this question can help you get in touch with the reality of the situation. Once you understand that you can handle whatever may happen to you, you can deal with the problem in a calmer manner.

Is this my business?
Wanting people to be/act differently causes stress. Read carefully–the only thing you can control is yourself. You can control the things that you do and say and how you react to what others do and say. You cannot control how someone will react to you, nor can you make them do or say differently. When you’re stressed, ask yourself “Is this my business?” If the answer is no, then figure out what you can do differently.

Why am I checking email before bed?
This is like playing Russian Roulette. If you see an email that stresses you, not only will this disturb your rest, but what can you really do about it in that moment? Now you’re wide awake, ruminating, with no ability to solve the problem. Tim Ferris, author of “The 4-Hour Workweek,” calls this “fishing for crises.” Don’t do it. You’ll sleep better.

Post your score and thoughts in the comments section.

If you want to do a more thorough Work Detox, contact me.


Entry filed under: Overworking, Quizzes. Tags: , , .

Dysfunctional Meeting Bingo!

1 Comment Add your own

  • 1. Rita  |  September 3, 2008 at 8:08 am

    I used to need detox! Now I’m healthy! Hallelujah!


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