Workplace mental health: Addiction
With dry January finally behind us, our thoughts may turn to any unhealthy addictions in our lives and whether they are becoming problematic in our personal or professional lives. Addiction can go far beyond our relationship with substances like alcohol or drugs. Sometimes our behaviour suggests that we may operate as though we’re addicted to activity. This could be to some everyday activity like eating or shopping, exercise, or even work.
Whatever the behaviour, the sense of pleasure or relief we get from it seems to become increasingly necessary, but harder to achieve. This is like the heroin addict being unable to recreate that first high – we need more of our substance/activity to achieve the same response as our brain’s reward/pleasure activities require more and more stimulation.
Looking out for employees addictive behaviours is incredibly important. Even when they seem to be just a very hard worker, making sure that they are checking in on their health and not becoming obsessive is vital to a good work-life balance.
With addiction, people can obsessively engage in that behaviour, sometimes neglecting other important activities or relationships.
If you are worried about any employees or interested in learning skills and techniques to help to regain a sense of control over behaviour you’re struggling to moderate, CBT may be able to help you.