The Atlantic reports that though success isn’t a conventional medical addiction, it has addictive properties for many people. Praise stimulates the neurotransmitter dopamine, which is connected to addictive behaviors. Success addiction is known to have a negative effect on human relationships. People choose to travel for business on anniversaries, and they miss their children’s important milestones while working long hours. Some even decide to focus on their careers and forgo marriage.
Many scholars, such as the psychologist Barbara Killinger, have found that people are willing to overwork to keep getting "hits" of success at the expense of their well-being. They shelve a much-needed rest from work and time with family and friends until after a project, or a promotion, but that day never arrives.
The pursuit of success demands commitment, therefore people will have to make sacrifices. Unfortunately, success addicts never feel they have reached the point of satisfaction. One accomplishment must be followed by another and this cycle continues.
Success addicts experience a kind of withdrawal when it's time to let go. They often experience depression and anxiety, and ruminate compulsively about "the good old days."