Work Addiction Rehab Center
If you think of work always, whether you are eating, walking, or even when in bed, it is quite possible that you are suffering from work addiction. Yes! Addiction to work is real and it may be extremely detrimental to an individual’s physical and mental health. Today’s competitive work environment is all about spending extra hours to meet the demanding job requirements. The atmosphere at work is such that the person feels the pressure to indulge in overwork.
But there is a difference between the terms “overwork” and “work addiction.” An individual generally overworks when the job demands it; for example, putting in extra hours to make a business development presentation to a client. Work addiction, on the other hand, is a psychological need of an individual to work excessively and compulsively. Work addiction, which has also given rise to the term “workaholic,” is not only about getting successful in life, it is a compulsive psychological need that gives a high from engaging in work. People suffering from work addiction are unable to control this “working behavior” that greatly affects their health and also their personal and professional relationships.
Though workaholics might not believe that they are suffering from a work addiction, but such people need proper treatments available in specialized work addiction rehab centers. These centers are well-equipped to handle individuals who are unable to keep themselves away from work and are constantly unsatisfied with their professional performances. Customized therapies are available that can help them get back to a normal professional life.
Signs and symptoms of work addiction
In a period of global change and continuous innovation, hard work and long hours have become a professional norm. However, in this cycle of working, one often overlooks the possibility of some people having work addiction. There might be many who are good at hiding it, or often justifying their ways of working to be a need for both professional and personal growth. There are others who work compulsively to get a relief from personal or emotional stress. Cited below are certain signs and symptoms of work addiction:
- Spending long hours at office, even when not required.
- Working despite the need for food or sleep.
- Continuing to work even when told to cut down the working hours.
- Putting work prior to family responsibilities.
- Obsession with work-related success.
- Fear of losing out on good opportunities or work-related performance.
- Justifying others about their working pattern.
- Working to cope up with feelings of anxiety, depression, helplessness or guilt.
People suffering from work addiction become so obsessed that the very idea of not indulging in work starts to make them anxious and paranoid. Workaholics, therefore, continue to work even when no work is actually required, regardless of the quality of performance. In spite of being physically tired, they are not able to control their extreme urge to constantly indulge in some kind of professional activities.
Effects of work addiction
Work addiction can not only affect the health of an individual, but also both personal and professional relationships. Workaholics often become aggressive and irritable, which can create a rift among colleagues, upset managers and clients, and greatly hamper their professional growth. There are many instances where workaholics have lost their jobs due to their over-indulgence in work without ensuring any quality.
Work addiction can affect family relationships and often lead to divorces among couples. A workaholic always gives priorities to his work rather than carrying out family responsibilities. Such people start avoiding social events and are always ready with an excuse for avoidance.
Moreover, work addicts start feeling ill if they don’t have any work. This physical illness can be caused by the anxiety of not working. Such a feeling resembles the withdrawal symptoms that a substance abuser face when their body is abstained from the addicted drug. Compulsive working can cause severe mental health issues, like major depressive episodes, fear, anxiety, stress, generalized anxiety disorder, etc. Work addiction can be accompanied by physical health effects like back and shoulder pain, muscle strains, headache, insomnia and other diseases.
Diagnosis of work addiction
Researcher Cecilie Schou Andreassen and colleagues from the Department of Psychosocial Science at the University of Bergen (UiB) in Norway developed the first instrument to measure work addiction, called the Bergen Work Addiction Scale (BWAS).
According to the University, the BWAS is the first workaholism instrument that is based on core symptoms found in more traditional drug addictions; i.e., salience, mood modification, tolerance, withdrawal symptoms, conflict, relapse, problems. The researchers developed seven criteria to measure work addiction:
- You think of how you can free up more time to work.
- You work in order to reduce guilt, helplessness, depression, and anxiety.
- You’ve been told to reduce your time working but ignore those requests.
- You spend much more time working than you initially intend.
- You become stressed when you are not able to work.
- You lower the importance of hobbies, fun activities, and fitness in exchange for more work time.
- You work so much that it has negatively impacted your health.
The above criteria are measured using the following scale: (1) Never, (2) Rarely, (3) Sometimes, (4) Often and (5) Always. If you have replied “often” or “always” to at least four out of these seven criteria, then there is an indication that you might be a workaholic.
Most of the prominent work addiction rehab centers use such diagnostic criteria to determine if an individual is a workaholic. Since work addiction is a psychological issue, a proper prognosis is mandatory for an early treatment.
A work addict will always be in denial of suffering from work addiction and will instead claim that he or she is in pursuit of professional success or has extreme work pressures due to company/client demand. It is very important to make such people realize their insensitivity to other aspects of lives. Family, friends, and close colleagues can play an important role in helping them seek treatment. Unlike other addiction treatments that focus on ameliorating any destructive substances or behaviors one is addicted to, the goal of a work addiction treatment is to bring a work-life balance to an individual’s life. Let’s go through some treatment approaches below:
- Behavioral therapies that include coping mechanisms, relaxation techniques, positive reinforcement, social skills training, anger management, problem-solving techniques, etc. can help a person regain his consciousness and ensure work-life balance.
- Cognitive behavioral therapies can help a workaholic to abstain from illogical thoughts and feelings and focus of setting certain work limits by maintaining a schedule and applying time management techniques.
- A therapist also practices positive psychology techniques that encourage a workaholic to begin life with an attainable goal. Such techniques help in understanding the work-life balance and the importance of maintaining healthy personal and professional techniques.
- Motivational interviewing undertaken in work addiction rehab centers boosts a workaholic’s motivation to change his working habits. It helps to realize the ill effects of compulsive working on both physical and mental health and thus avoiding the same in the future.
- The self-help program of Workaholic Anonymous, similar to Alcoholic Anonymous, also undertakes the 12-step approach to support people suffering from work addiction. The support group organizes sessions that help a work addict to understand the intricacies of work addiction and learn the skills to develop a balanced life. Most prominent rehab centers have access to this support group and help the patient top attend such sessions.
- Medications are also given along with the therapies to ease any anxieties or depression or stress-related behaviors that have accompanied their work addiction habits.
Such approaches can be employed in both inpatient treatments and outpatient treatments. Inpatient treatments are, however, advisable to patients who are suffering from intense work addiction. In this treatment, the patients are separated from their workplace and can solely focus on the recovery process.
Outpatient treatments, on the other hand, also undertake intensive behavioral therapies but are best for people who can control their work addiction habits with outside interference.
Finding the best work addiction rehab centers
One must consider certain factors before finalizing a rehab center. The rehab should have preventive measures that will stop you from using anything that can trigger your indulgence in working. Some other factors that should be considered are:
- Cost of the program
- Insurance acceptance
- Location of the rehab
- Length of the program
- Type of facilities and services available
- Availability of extended care
- Access to support groups
If you or your loved one is finding any difficulty in searching for the best work addiction rehab center, we, at the Recover Mental Health can be of help. Our treatment advisors can listen to your queries and help you find the best work addiction treatment programs that can assist in ingraining the work-life balance for you. All you need to do is chat online or call us at 866-593-2339 for more information. Remember, work is worship, but let us not turn it into an addiction.