Could workaholism be good for you?

A professor from Rouen Business School has stuck his neck out on the topic of work addiction. It can be a positive thing, he argues. MT thinks it can hear Madame Guillotine...

by Rebecca Burn-Callander
Last Updated: 19 Aug 2013

For workaholics, downtime is an alien concept. Every waking moment is dedicated to professional endeavour. Relationships suffer. Stress levels rise. Efficiency plummets. Sound familiar?

But one academic believes that workaholism can actually bring job satisfaction, raise self esteem, and strengthen social interactions for those afflicted. It’s a bit like chocolate addition, apparently: harming no one, and bringing energy and joy. Hell, workaholism even has fewer calories.

In his recent academic paper, Professor Yehuda Baruch claims that, far from being an exhausted, burned-out shell of a human being, the workaholic displays traits of ‘vigour and dedication’, ‘the exact opposites of exhaustion and cynicism’. These, he argued, are the hallmarks of workaholism.

Hm. Perhaps if France had a few more workaholics, it would stand a better chance of getting it's AAA rating back.

‘Chocoholism does not hurt the environment, and only under certain extreme cases might it be harmful to the individual’s health,’ opines Baruch. ‘Similarly, workaholism can be encouraged by intrinsic motivation and need, coupled with organisational identification and job satisfaction.’

MT would like to make the point that the word ‘addiction’ itself presupposes an extreme. No one calls a person who likes a bar of chocolate a couple of times a week an ‘addict’, do they?

Anyway, MT thinks that this idea is about as useful as a chocolate teapot. Furthermore, its ‘non extreme’ chocolate fetish has rendered its corpulent, cocoa-scented mass too addled with sugar and e numbers to come up with a valid argument. It might just pop another chocolate bonbon into its sugar-smeared maw instead.

Any ‘non-extreme’ workaholics care to comment?

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