8 Overworked Symptoms and Ways to Overcome Them Effectively

By Indeed Editorial Team

Published October 21, 2022

The Indeed Editorial Team comprises a diverse and talented team of writers, researchers and subject matter experts equipped with Indeed's data and insights to deliver useful tips to help guide your career journey.

If you're working in a fast-paced environment or receiving excess or unusual amounts of work, it's necessary for you to implement self-care techniques to maintain your mental health. These methods can help you identify the signs and sources of stress and the most effective ways to handle them, both physically and mentally. Learning more about the symptoms you can experience when you're feeling overworked might help you develop techniques to overcome them, reduce your stress, and increase your productivity.

In this article, we discuss how to recognize overworked symptoms to find solutions to relieve your workload and share eight of these signs to help you overcome them.

Related: How to Tell Your Boss You Have Too Much Work Assigned

How can you recognize overworked symptoms?

The first step to identifying overworked symptoms is to avoid ignoring or underrating them. This means it's necessary for you to acknowledge any signs that might affect your productivity, work satisfaction, and mental health. Doing this can help you address the problem immediately and improve your work-life balance. Another step to identifying these symptoms is to listen to your family members and friends. If they have concerns about your workload or well-being, it's beneficial for you to ask them for advice on how to discuss this issue with your supervisors. They can notice signs you might have been ignoring.

You can also listen to your coworkers' feedback and observations, as they can also help you identify signs of fatigue and stress. This information can assist you in analyzing the problem and preventing it from becoming worse. For instance, suppose that you missed various meetings at work and your manager informs you that missing these gatherings might prevent you from reaching project deadlines. You can discuss the number of tasks you have and how much time you spend on each one. Then, you can ask for their help in finding ways to assign the workload more efficiently.

Related: How to Enjoy Work in 12 Steps and Why Doing So Is Important

8 overworked symptoms you can recognize

Here are eight symptoms you can recognize to help overcome them successfully:

1. Lack of motivation

Performing too many tasks at work can affect your motivation and productivity, as these obligations can restrict you from appreciating your own accomplishments. If you're feeling unmotivated, it's crucial for you to acknowledge the goals you've accomplished. You can schedule daily recesses aimed at helping you reflect on your work and career. This can assist you in recognizing your long-term accomplishments, analyzing your performance, and appreciating how you've advanced your career. It might also be helpful to determine the tasks and projects that helped you demonstrate your competence in the workplace.

You can also talk to your manager to discuss how certain tasks are affecting your motivation and productivity. By doing this, you can help them assess your workload and determine how they can reduce the number of tasks they're assigning to you. It's advisable to ask them to allow you to keep projects you find fulfilling, as this might help you feel more engaged and motivated at work.

Related: 8 Essential Tips on How to Keep Working When Unmotivated

2. Low productivity

Sometimes, the number of tasks you're performing at work can affect your productivity levels, as completing them all simultaneously might impact the quality of the outcome. This can happen if it's necessary for you to complete tasks quickly, or if you're working on a project that has tight deadlines. To avoid this, consider dividing your tasks into smaller sub-tasks, as they can be easier to manage and complete. You can also improve your organizational skills by creating a task list and sorting your work based on importance and urgency.

This can assist you in identifying time-consuming tasks that might not be relevant to your current project and help you stay focused on the most important ones. It's also advisable to look for computer programs that can help you manage your time effectively, such as agendas, calendars, to-do lists, and time trackers.

Related: 7 Ways to Collaborate with Your Team to Improve Productivity

3. Feeling distracted

Taking on too many projects simultaneously can affect your ability to stay focused on your work because you might have too many goals to achieve. This situation can also affect your ability to recognize the importance of each project and task. One of the best ways to avoid this problem is to complete one task at a time and ensure the quality of your work.

To do this, you can list all your pending activities and identify the tasks that might require more of your time, attention, and resources. This information can help you organize your time and allocate your resources more effectively to complete the most relevant tasks first. You can guarantee the quality of your work by reviewing your work periodically and discussing with your manager the milestones you've accomplished.

Related: The 3 Basic Types of Focus and Why They're Important

4. Lack of energy

Feeling tired can be a sign of an excessive workload, as you might be working too many hours or working with insufficient breaks. To prevent this from becoming a problem, you can schedule regular breaks and delegate some of your responsibilities. Asking your team members to help you with your work can assist you in completing your tasks more quickly, improving team efficiency, and increasing your overall productivity. Delegating tasks can also help your team members feel more involved and engaged in the work they do, which can increase morale and improve the work environment.

Related: What to Do if You're Always Tired at Work (With Tips)

5. Experiencing sleeping problems

Feeling worried or stressed about work can affect your sleep. This can happen if you're using your personal time at home to complete work-related tasks, such as staying up late to finish a project or researching information for a presentation. One effective way to overcome this problem is to avoid using your personal time to perform work-related activities.

To do this, it's necessary to commit to yourself and use your personal time to be with family and friends, engage in hobbies, or participate in recreational activities. You can also create a sleep routine that includes going to bed at the same time every night and waking up at the same time every morning. This can help you regulate your sleep schedule and avoid work-related distractions at night.

Related: How to Wake Up Early (And Why It Makes a Difference)

6. Negative thoughts and feelings

If you're having negative thoughts about your abilities, productivity, or career, you may be trying to perform too many tasks at once. An excessive workload might affect your confidence and performance, as sometimes it's difficult to achieve all the goals. To overcome this issue, you can talk with your supervisor about your feelings and thoughts, as their feedback might help you recognize if you're overworking yourself. They can also give you a positive assessment of your abilities, which might increase your self-confidence and help you acknowledge your strengths and competence.

If your manager's feedback isn't enough to help you overcome your feelings, it's beneficial for you to seek outside resources, such as a psychotherapist. These professionals can help you develop a plan to overcome your feelings and use techniques to increase your self-esteem.

Related: How to Cope with Feeling Unappreciated at Work (With Helpful Tips)

7. Not eating enough

Trying to perform too many tasks during the day can disrupt your eating patterns, as you might skip meals and food intake or eat much less than you need. To avoid this situation, you can schedule your meals in advance and incorporate them into your daily activities. For instance, you can add your breakfast time to your morning activities and include it on your agenda.

You can also ask a colleague to have lunch with you every day to avoid any possibility of skipping your meal. Sharing this time with a coworker can help you improve your relationships with them and better understand their career goals and personal aspirations.

Related: A List of 19 Techniques for Stress Management at Work

8. Avoiding personal activities

Sometimes, an excessive workload can cause you to avoid personal activities, such as family gatherings. This can happen because you might choose to work extra hours to finish a project, complete a task, or work on a presentation. To avoid this, it's necessary for you to talk with your manager and explain why you cannot work extra hours or an extended shift. You can use this conversation to help them understand the importance of your personal activities and how they motivate you to perform better at work.

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