Addiction A-Z

Work addiction

Work addiction, also known as “workaholism,” is the inability to stop obsessing about your job or career, even at the expense of your relationships and health. In the United States, work addiction is not a medically recognized disease. Other countries, however, view it as serious condition: In Japan, “karoshi” means working to the point of death, and accounts for more than 200 deaths annually. “Leisure sickness,” or the development of flu-like symptoms when away from the job, affects 3% of the population in the Netherlands. Work addicts tend to put in long hours; take on excessive workloads; tie their self-esteem to job performance; have difficulty relaxing or taking vacations; and often miss family events and other functions to remain on the job. Although most workaholics obsess about paid work, it is possible to have the same disorder based on a hobby, volunteer work or parenting. Workaholics are also shown to suffer from substance abuse disorders, obesity, headaches, stiff muscles, anxiety and even cardiovascular disease. Workaholics Anonymous (WA) is a self-help group based on the 12-step program of Alcoholics Anonymous.

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