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Re: Thank you all for the advice TamaraJ

Posted by fallsfall on June 7, 2005, at 20:46:46

In reply to Re: Thank you all for the advice fallsfall, posted by TamaraJ on June 7, 2005, at 16:07:18

Getting a life and finding some enthusiasm for it **IS** my work right now. Going to Chicago was part of my therapy. Recovering from depression is as valid as recovering from surgery.

This actually might be a very good time to address the workaholic issue. When you do go back to work, will you go back full time, or will you start out part time? Actually, either way, I think that your coworkers wouldn't be too surprised if you said that you need to limit your work hours for your health. Tell them that you are a recovering workaholic - people find that phrase amusing, but it does tell them that you are making a conscious, positive effort to reduce your hours. And treat yourself like a recovering workaholic. Set the number of hours that you will work (like to actually 40 if you go back full time), and then stick to it. When people see that you are working less because you believe it is in the best interest of your health (rather than because you don't care or because you are lazy), they will be supportive. You will need to be sure that your boss understands what you are trying to do. And when there is too much work, you may need to ask for his help in prioritizing what you are doing, or in finding someone to help you. Particularly if you are reducing your hours "for your health", other people will pick up the slack.

I worked for 2 years in the middle of my disability, and I was pretty strict about my hours. I worked in the software industry where overtime is pretty much expected. But I found that people were really very supportive of my limited hours. I was kind of surprised.

The hardest part is to feel, yourself, like it is the right thing to do. Remind yourself that you are getting paid for 40 hours - not 60. So if you do a solid 40 hours work you shouldn't feel guilty. I needed to shift my thinking a bit so that I would see getting ahead at work as only one of my goals. I needed to see having time to relax as a goal (and that felt really strange!!). I needed to see recreation as a goal. That balancing my life was important.

For me, it was a major shift in attitude. But I knew that if I went back to the way I used to work that I would be back on disability in no time. Therapy did help with that a lot. And when I am tempted to work too much, I have someone to talk to about it - someone who will recommend that I do the healthy thing.

When do you expect to go back?

 

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