The roots of workaholism are sown in narcissist homes. “I do therefore I am” is the motto of adult children from these homes. Constantly looking for more things that they can do to prove themselves, they are chronically exhausted, unaware of how this drive to achieve inhibits their ability to take care of themselves.
From one daughter,
“It all looks great, but somehow I feel like I am trying to prove something to justify my existence.”
No matter how much they try to accomplish and perform, they hear the internal message, it’s not enough. Busyness and workaholism can be a form of self-destructive behavior similar to alcoholism or drug and food addiction. It numbs the pain. If you are chronically exhausted and find that you can’t slow down, and are beginning to have health problems, it is time to take inventory of whether or not your activities fit your own value system, rather than your mother’s or your internalized critic. Looking strong and invulnerable on the outside may attempt to escape the emptiness and pain of feelings of unworthiness on the inside.
These daughters should remember the words of Marianne Williamson,
“Our deepest fear is not that we are inadequate. Our deepest fear is that we are powerful beyond measure. It is our light, not our darkness that that frightens us most. We ask ourselves, who am I to be brilliant, gorgeous, talented, and fabulous? Actually, who are you not to be?
CITE: Will I Ever Be Good Enough by Karyn McBride, Ph.D.