Ever since I remember I was trying to do too many things. Besides my job I always have a number of “hobbies” or “passions” that make it really hard to concentrate on one main thing or even to choose what that main thing should be. For example, lately I have become obsessed with making electronic music. So while being at work I am secretly spending nearly all my day reading and watching videos about the equipment and techniques. Note, that I mostly do not actually make music, but rather “prepare”, “research” or “study”. I consistently miss deadlines at work, but just can’t keep my mind on the job.
But the worst part of this is that through my life I had a dozen or more of such hobbies, becoming obsessed, then switching to another, then going in circles. Some but not all of them include drawing, painting, playing different music instruments, programming, visual design, tournament poker (professional approach requires a lot of training), financial trading, internet marketing, and others. As you can probably guess I have never become decent at any of this, just “trying”, “learning” and then switching to another. I am writing this because it looks like some kind of disorder to me, I just spend a lot of time with little results, my main job is constantly in danger because I am distracted and I am very frustrated. I don’t understand, why do I even want to do these things. I just become obsessed and can’t stop, can’t control it.
I would really appreciate if someone could explain what is going on with me, why is my mind working this way and what to do to actually live a more simple and fulfilling life. Thank you!
It is fine to have hobbies but not when the time spent on them puts you at risk to lose your job. Continuing to engage in this behavior could have real-life consequences.
If you are okay with possibly losing your job, then there is nothing you need to do to change. If you are not okay with the possibility of losing your job, and I am assuming you are not since you wrote for help, then you must be willing to take whatever steps that are necessary to change.
Some people engage in destructive behaviors because nothing of consequence has happened and or because they don’t believe that anything of consequence will happen. Based on the limited information provided, you have not been fired yet, but it seems like a definite possibility.
If you cannot control your behavior, then consider behavioral therapy. Behavioral therapy is highly-focused on extinguishing specific, unwanted behaviors. It’s imperative that this problem is corrected so you can avoid losing your job. You do not want to “learn the hard way” that your behavior has very real consequences. The responsible thing to do, the protective thing to do, is to get help from a therapist before your behavior harms you. Please take care.
Dr. Kristina Randle