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Difficulty of Working for Different Jobs at the Same Time

by Lisa McQuerrey

People who work two simultaneous jobs are often trying to make financial ends meet or build experience in a particular industry. Regardless of your reasons for working dual jobs, there are a number of potential challenges to consider before taking on more comittment than you can reasonably handle.

Logistics

Scheduling is often a major challenge when trying to manage two jobs. This is especially true if hours for one of the positions varies or are inconsistent. You must factor in travel time between jobs and the hours you actually work. If one or both jobs have a propensity for overtime or on-call work, it can put you in a position of having to say no to one of your employers or risking losing the other.

Loyalty

Sometimes, employers have a “no compete” clause in employment contracts that prohibit staffers from working for competitors or even vendors or suppliers. Be sure you aren't running into a conflict of interest with your dual jobs. Even if your employer doesn't have a contractual clause, you might find your employers don’t like the idea of you holding a second job, particularly if they feel it has the potential to loser your productivity or otherwise harm your job performance.

Burnout

Trying to work two jobs simultaneously can quickly result in burnout and fatigue. This is especially true if you are attempting to work two full-time jobs. You are likely to be tired, rundown and sleep-deprived, and you might not have adequate time for healthy diet and exercise. If the jobs are similar in nature, the repetition of your duties may become boring or overwhelming, which can hurt the quality of your work and your productivity.

Stress

Working two jobs at the same time can create stress from many sources. Your personal time is greatly reduced, and if you have a family, you might experience feelings of guilt for not having an adequate work-life balance. As you try to juggle personal responsibilities and daily household tasks with work, you may feel overwhelmed away from work, too. This can lead to serious health issues, including generalized anxiety disorder and depression.

Performance

Spreading yourself too thin will eventually result in diminished productivity and lower quality work. This can eventually hurt your long-term career prospects. Try to arrange for downtime and look for ways to increase your skill sets so you can eventually move into one higher-paying job, rather than trying to juggle two mediocre ones.

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