Are You Headed for a Celebrity-Like Meltdown?

Overworked Rihanna is put on a "health watch" -- do you need to go on one as well?

It looks like Rihanna’s killer 10-month tour schedule, plus reported late-night partying, are pushing the pop star to her breaking point. Mercury record label execs are putting the singer on a 24-hour “health watch,” which includes curfews and around-the-clock surveillance.

According to British tabloid The Sun, when she’s not hitting the clubs, Rihanna burns the midnight oil in the recording studio, often until 8 a.m. Well, who wouldn’t burn out on that kind of schedule?

Working nonstop without any breathing room isn’t a problem faced only of pop stars. Many non-famous American workers are also burning the candle at both ends, and suffering from stress and exhaustion because of it. You might not be pulling all-nighters to bang out a new album, but you do have dinner to make, kids to chauffeur, homework to help with and a never-ending stream of work emails on your Blackberry to contend with -- all during your so-called downtime. Add to that a new baby or sick kid keeping you up at night, and we’d say your schedule more than rivals that of a actor or pop star (not that we’re playing a game of who’s got it worse).

It’s probably no wonder then that a new survey by ComPsych Corp shows nearly 30 percent of employees admitted to being "too stressed to be effective" at work for at least five days in 2011. That’s an entire workweek lost because you’re so darn overwhelmed and overworked.

Kind of makes you wish your employers would put you on your own sort of health watch, doesn’t it? While the around-the-clock surveillance bit doesn’t sound like much fun, I would welcome the celebrity personal trainer that’s being flown in to help Rihanna boost her physical fortitude. As a side note, I do wonder how a hardcore fitness routine is supposed to help the star unwind and relax. Perhaps a yoga guru would have been more appropriate?

If you could build your own stress-busting health watch, what would yours look like? Mine would involve a three-week paid vacation (being self-employed, there’s no such thing as paid time off anymore), hand-blended smoothies served to me in a hammock, plenty of sunlight therapy and daily massages and body wrap treatments -- preferably all on a beach. I’d also bring in a running coach, a meditation teacher and a personal chef.

If all that sounds like too much to organize, I’d gladly allow my employer to ship me off to a wellness resort, like Miraval or Canyon Ranch, for a few weeks. I’d even be happy to respond to emails for an hour a day to keep my employer happy. After all, I wouldn’t want to seem like a total diva.

Anyway, it’s time for the bosses of the world to realize that a happy worker is a more productive worker. Since most of us probably won’t be getting a corporately-funded stress holiday any time soon, we’ll have to find other ways to keep up the good work without burning out. Need some suggestions? Start with these 15 tactics for succeeding at work without losing sleep. Rihanna, take note: None of them involves drinking multiple shots of tequila.

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