Hard Work or Overworked? How Can You Tell the Difference?

There’s a lot of pressure to be a hard worker in this country. While other countries are taking siestas and six-week summer holidays, we’re powering through illness and a limited amount of paid time off. But too much hard work can be dangerous, harming your employees’ physical and mental health. And diminished health will make your team less productive and less efficient. Thus, it’s in your best interest to make sure you help your employees achieve a sustainable work-life balance and make sure they’re not overworked. Here’s how you can tell the difference between hard work and be overworked.

Overworked means diminished returns

Overwork means you’re exceeding your capacity, pushing yourself beyond your means, and leaving little to no time for rest. Instead of squeezing in enough time to unwind, we’re spending more time at work, working longer and harder, but not necessarily better. Because people are exhausted and anxious, productivity wanes, but it resembles stress, so too often, the signs of being overworked are missed.

Physical and emotional fatigue

People who are exhausted from overworking are more likely to be physically ill, more likely to suffer from headaches, muscle pain, and shortness of breath. These people might seem disengaged, distracted, forgetful, and unable to concentrate on tasks.

Absentmindedness and distracted

Extreme fatigue can also lead to forgetfulness and other cognitive deficiencies that might lead to accidents or mistakes at work. If you manage a more labor-intensive company where your employees are using heavy machinery and tools, and other people’s safety is in their hands, this could be a huge problem. Even simply driving a car to work each morning could be a problem. Too many mistakes diminishes productivity and wasting a lot of time when other people have to go back and fix them.


Though it might look like overworked people are committed to your company, they’re more likely to disengage and lose interest in their day-to-day work. They might even start procrastinating and mismanaging their priorities, focusing on tasks that aren’t important and ignoring the most urgent work.

Poor performance

Eventually, after long periods of chronic stress, performance will lag. It’s proof that those late at work are counterproductive. Your employees are working an excessive number of hours, but their output is getting worse and worse, requiring even more time to repair all the mistakes.

Looking to boost performance and morale? We can help!

For more tips on helping your employees achieve a work-life balance, so they don’t overwork themselves, contact Pridestaff Thousand Oaks today.