There is a way to regain your energy and sense of control without negatively affecting your career
Are you starting to feel tired and run down? Does it seem like you’re always being asked to do more? Do you feel under-appreciated? Are you beginning to experience irritability or resentment in your present position?
Let’s face it – you didn’t get to where you are by being a slacker. Rather, you’re a hard worker and probably do more than your fair share of the load. After all, success does come at a price!
But even you are starting to realize that there is a limit; especially when the load starts to impact your physical and psychological health. Recent research is very clear that too much stress leads to physical illness. Should that happen, not only will you be impacted, but so will your work; your focus and concentration diminish. And if you can’t do your job well, then that will truly drive you past the brink.
On the other hand, how can you possibly stay in the ‘favored’ position you’re in if you’re not willing to do all you’ve been doing. (And as a psychologist, I’m also going to go out on a limb and guess that being a ‘people pleaser’ is probably a role you’ve been playing for a very long time. So to make a change now is going to be scary.)
What I’d like to suggest to you is that you do not have to make an out and out change. However, there is a manner in which you can respond that will allow you to still do the fine work you’ve always done, take care of you and not actually have to utter the word ‘No.’ Quite a feat, wouldn’t you say?
I offer you three possible ways to actually still please others but not put your own welfare at risk. You can actually set boundaries and not be seen in a negative way. When a request is made of you, agree to do it as you always have. However, just add one of the following three statements:
1. I’d be happy to take this on just as soon as I’m done with my present project which
should be in about ‘X’ number of weeks.
2. Since I want to make sure I do this assignment in the very best way you’d want it
to be done and give it my full attention, I can get to it by (insert date).
3. Clearly, this is really important. With everything else I’m working on, would you
like me to give it top priority and have the other things wait, or can it wait until I finish
the other items first?
I believe the beauty of these suggestions is that in each case, you are agreeing to do the work and yet still wanting to make sure it’s done properly.
No doubt, since you’ve rarely set a boundary before, initially even adding one of these statements will seem difficult and unusual to do. Anytime a person makes a change, it feels odd. But once you do so and see that the consequences are fine, it becomes easier and easier. Try it, trust yourself – you’ll feel more empowered!”