Michael Hyatt and Megan Hyatt Miller
5 Principles to Free Yourself from the Cult of Overwork
Win at Work and Succeed at Life
summarized in 7 key ideas
Key idea 1 of 7
Don’t let your whole life revolve around work.
Michael Hyatt couldn’t wait to tell his wife the good news. Earlier that day, his boss had handed him a bonus that was double his yearly salary. The bonus represented success, security, and a big pat on the back. But to Hyatt’s surprise, his wife didn’t see it that way.
When she found out about his bonus, she burst into tears. Instead of being happy, she explained to him that she was near breaking point. She felt like a single mother raising their five kids alone, she said; something about their lives needed to change. Hyatt was shocked. Without realizing it, he’d fallen into the dangerous trap of overwork.
The key message here is: Don’t let your whole life revolve around work. Hyatt told himself that he always needed to be busy, that sleep was a waste of valuable time. He thought there was no such thing as a work-life balance – not if he wanted to reach his full potential.
Millions of Americans are doing exactly the same thing. They're working extremely long hours, and their health and families are falling apart. Consider these disturbing statistics. People who work over 55 hours a week are 33 percent more likely to suffer a stroke, and 13 percent more likely to have a heart attack than those who work 40 hours or less. What’s more, CEOs and entrepreneurs are much more likely to get divorced than the rest of the population. Why? The number one reason their marriages fail is because they don’t dedicate enough time to their family life.
With all these worrying statistics, why don’t high achievers take their feet off the gas more?
Well, when overworked people feel their lives are falling apart outside of work, their answer is often to work even harder. Hyatt calls this phenomenon the Hustle Fallacy. It might sound counterintuitive, but high achievers are so used to hard work being their go-to solution, they think that if they can just double down on their efforts, somehow they’ll be able to push past the pressure and friction in their personal lives and things will get better. But the answer to overwork is never more work.
Luckily, as you’ll learn in the following blinks, there’s a real solution to the conundrum of work-life balance.
About the Author
Michael Hyatt is an author and the founder and chairman of Michael Hyatt & Co., a leadership development company. He was previously the CEO of Thomas Nelson Publishers and his work has been featured in the Wall Street Journal, Forbes, and Fast Company. Megan Hyatt Miller, his daughter, is the chief executive officer at Michael Hyatt and Co. She’s also the cohost of the popular Lead to Win podcast.
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