i have adventures (sometimes)

Tuesday, 16 July 2013

Property of Work: If Found, Return to Desk

22:38 Posted by Ali , 1 comment
Work almost entirely owns me at the moment and it's making me unhappy. Remember how I laughed at that clause about unlimited compulsory overtime? Yeah, hilarious. Last week I worked every evening and most of the weekend, and have accordingly been hating my life and questioning my life choices.
Full credit to a colleague for noticing and getting me called in to the manager's office to talk about it, although that did mean I spent half of Monday crying to her and HR. I defy anyone feeling fragile to answer "Are you OK?" without going to pieces.

It's not the impression I wanted to make two weeks into my new job, and certainly not if it means that the rest of my team gets put under extra pressure because ag shame the precious new girl can't cope. It's not even that I can't handle the pressure. This time last year I was sitting in the library 10 hours a day writing my dissertation. I survived. I also sort of resent the well-intended notion that it's because it's my first real job and the corporate world is so different. And yes, it is different. But that's not my problem.

My problem is that it's the same.

Deja vu.
I'm used to having my work dominate my whole life. That was studying. That was interning while freelancing. I wanted different. One of the things I wanted most from a 9-5 was that it would be, well, 9-5. I want to do my work and do it well, but I don't want it to be my life. I actually can take the pressure. I was just hoping that things would finally change and I'd get my life back.

So far? No luck.

At least things can only get better from here. Probably. I'm told that it isn't always this busy, and I appreciate that the company genuinely seems to care about its employees' wellbeing. I'm impressed they called me in rather than letting me quietly crumble at my desk, and we do after all get free popcorn fairly regularly.

So it's not all bad. On Friday we had a team-building day, which was more fun than it sounds, because it didn't involve any of the team-building activities they used to make us do on high school camp in some kind of too-little-too-late attempt to get us to bond.

"Wow, after four years of not liking each other, being passed through this spiderweb has really made me realise your leadership potential." (Source)

This was much more fun because we got to paint a school. And as an artist was assigned to our team, we got tasked with a mural. We discussed what things were cool and should be in a mural, and I said "SPACE AND DINOSAURS OR MAYBE JUST ONE OF THOSE THINGS", and we decided on SPACE and tasked our artist with doing the hard work and then telling the rest of us which bits to colour in.

Here we are delegating to our artist.
And here is our canvas.
And so we painted with varying degrees of skill (most of the dribbly bits were mine), and I assume we team-built because I came away knowing like six more people's names. YEAH BONDING.


So like I said, it's not all bad. Things will get better and I'll be OK. It won't always be my whole life, and even if it does keep on being this busy, I'll adapt and learn to cope with it (and remember it's not forever). I'll still find time to see the people I want to see and do the things I want to do, and I WON'T DIE.

And just as soon as I have time to take lunch breaks again, I'm going to go and find that lake.

1 comment:

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