Working late hours, never saying no to projects, refusing to delegate important tasks to your fellow coworkers. If anything on this list sounds familiar then you my friend might just be an overachiever.
While you may think that being a perfectionist at work is a good thing, there are times when trying to do too much can actually hinder your career and even take you out of the running for that big promotion.
Here’s why you need to rethink that ”I can do everything” attitude.
Your over achieving becomes the new standard
It’s great if you can give a really important project your undivided attention every now and then but no matter how hard you try, you can’t keep this level of work up. Working late every evening, skipping breaks and obsessing over every little detail will only lead to more stress and eventual burn out in the long run. Complete your work to a good standard and save your exceptional work for the projects that deserve it.
You’re not actually that productive
Shock! Horror! Overachievers often like to work their way through tasks in a linear pattern. This means that many of us (myself included) can be guilty of not giving each task the amount of time that it truly deserves. If you’re constantly striving for perfection your work is going to take a lot longer. You will always be thinking about the last thing that you have to do to make it perfect. As a result, your work will never be done.
You start to resent your coworkers
Overachievers often feel like they are working harder than everyone else and it’s not long before this will start to get on your nerves – especially if you’re working late while your team swan off for after-work drinks! If you think you’re working a lot harder than your colleagues it may be time to take a step back and let them pick up some of the slack. It’s important that people don’t just presume that you enjoy doing all this extra work.
You will get overlooked for a promotion
It’s brutal but it’s true. Employers want to promote someone who can come up with amazing ideas and execute them. If you’re too busy trying to do all the office grunt work then you will, unfortunately, get overlooked again and again. Millennials, in particular, can find this difficult as they have been brought up seeking instant gratification. They often presume that ploughing through lots of different tasks is the best way to become successful but this is often not the case.
You can’t handle failure
Failure is a fact of life, but for overachievers, it can be particularly hard to take. You’re working yourself to the bone so why aren’t you seeing the results that you feel you deserve? Overachievers can see minor setbacks as a massive red mark that will forever be on their permanent record when, in reality, it’s just a learning curve.
So, what can you do to keep your overachieving ways in check?
- Learn to accept failure.
- Unplug from social media every now then.
- Strive for efficiency, not perfection.
- Prioritise your projects.
- Learn when to say no.