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Some People Really Can't Stop Working

Some People Really Can't Stop Working

Estimated read time: 2-3 minutes

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Paul Nelson, KSL NewsRadioFor many addicts, their problem gets in the way of their job. But for some people, their job is the problem.

It's Monday, the day of the week many people dread because they have to go back to work. However, one group of Utahans may dread it more than you. These people have to return to the proverbial monkey on their back.

A group gathers for a Workaholics Anonymous meeting in Salt Lake City. In the spirit of staying anonymous these men will be known only as George, Rick and Russ.

Rick says, "We now know that we deal with an obsession, cunning and powerful. Without help it is destined to overwhelm us."

WA Member Rick says he is addicted to the adrenaline he feels while working, and his need for it is just as strong to him as booze is to an alcoholic.

"You can become just obsessed with accomplishing that and forget the other things, like it's important to eat and get exercise and get rest," says Rick.

They say this leads to serious health problems. George, the group's director, says he recently worked more than 24 hours straight without eating, sleeping or bathing. Plus, he says, he really didn't need to. "I called an alcoholic friend of mine, and I said, ‘Do I need a 12-step? Do I need AA?' She said, ‘No, you're not an alcoholic, you're a workaholic, and everyone knows it but you.'"

George says many workaholics are known for procrastinating so they can put pressure on themselves when their deadline approaches. George admits he used to log on to and comment on the message boards instead of working. He says most people don't realize their problem can be so severe.

"We're always in recovery because workaholism is considered a virtue by a lot of people," says George.

Members say there are signs to look out for. These include getting more excited about work than your family, and if your loved ones have given up on you coming home on time.

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