Unless you’re Superman or Wonder Woman, a workload overload situation could drive you to distraction–or worse! Since we’ve just started a new year, this might be a great time to evaluate what your work situation is and whether the workload is sustainable through the year ahead.
When your over-the-top workload has you spinning in circles or hyperventilating from stress, with no glimmer of light at the end of the tunnel, time is of the essence. You need to do a reality check ASAP to determine if (1) there’s a source of temporary relief you can tap into or (2) you need to exchange your work environment for a new (better) job, pronto.
Failure to take action to clarify your options and set something constructive in motion could cost you dearly, both in terms of your overall career success and in possibly severe physical or emotional impact. It’s hard to imagine any scenario in which a company or a job justifies those consequences.
Trying to determine whether staying put or leaving for hopefully greener pastures is your best choice can be a challenging exercise. Rarely is it a really cut-and-dried situation, with a lot of bad on the “staying” side and a lot of good on the “leaving” side.
You need to take as objective a view as possible of the pros and cons–and consult people in your network or elsewhere who are less closely involved and can potentially help you reach a practical solution.
If you determine that you can’t turn around the situation you’re in, for whatever reason, you will most likely wind up deciding that moving on to a new job somewhere else is your best–maybe your only–option. Before you get there, though, you might go through the anguish of hating to leave (if some elements of your current job are desirable), dreading the actual process of orchestrating a departure (landing a new job, etc.), and so on.
Best advice: Learn to accept that you’ve reached a point where letting go is necessary. No, it isn’t always easy–maybe it never really is–but it’s essential. Just try to keep in mind whatever was good about the situation and see if you can replicate it in some way in a new job. Then plan a job search that incorporates the key elements you’ve identified.
Don’t make new year’s resolutions you probably won’t keep, but do think about how you landed in the bad situation you’re currently in and how that might be prevented from happening again in the future.
If your situation arose from circumstances that were totally beyond your control, your best bet is just to pick your next opportunity as carefully as you can. On the other hand, if there were some factors you might have been able to manage if you’d been more alert, explore those carefully and make sure your next choice involves taking smarter, more assertive control of critical job elements.
No one can guarantee that this year will bring more career success and job satisfaction than last year did, but you can influence many aspects of it. Make sure your “new year’s resolution” involves working consistently on those!