… Most of us have fallen into the niceness trap at least once – perhaps apologizing for something that wasn’t our fault, or taking on a time-sucking assignment we didn’t have time for – and later regretted it.
But those who overextended themselves habitually are likely on the fast-track to a crushing workload, terrible assignments and resentment – not the career fast-track.
“Whenever we put the word ‘too’ in front of ‘nice’ – right away it raises big flags for me,” says Toronto career coach Shirin Khamisa. “What I’ve come to see in my own life, and in working with people, is that the more courageous you can be, … the better you’ll excel in whatever you’re doing.”
Being savvy at work means being able to tell the difference between the right time to overextend yourself – like when the company is severely short-staffed or when a great project presents itself – and when yo stick to your job description and your office hours. It also requires the ability to say no.
People who are unable to assert their needs and limitations can be vulnerable to burnout, which will ultimately sap you of both your energy and creativity, she adds. Being too accommodating becomes a damaging habit, says Khamisa. People may start to see you as the person they can unload projects on, and you may find yourself too busy to jump on career-building projects (or even notice them in the first place). …
Special to The Edmonton Journal
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