Today was one of those days. I found myself bitching unnecessarily loud that people close by could easily pick up on my ranting, for something so irrelevant. At the time I thought it was relevant of course. But as soon as I opened my mouth, I regretted it.
I find myself becoming this way more often that I would like. I’ve always been a reserved person, especially at work, never really open about how I feel inside. I always believe in keeping work separate from my personal life. I’ve always been careful not to let others at work see if I’m upset, unhappy or bothered about something. I’ve always been careful to control my emotions. There’s an actual term for this – Emotional Intelligence.
I remember when I quit my job once upon a time, not because I hated the job or the people I worked with, but because the CEO was an evil fire-breathing dragon who instilled fear in all the staff. My job, I felt, being in the position that I was in, was to protect the employees from her wrath. I took the beating for them, so to speak, whenever possible. I was not happy and have never in my life felt that way about work. I eventually broke and knew I had to quit when I found myself crying everyday in the subway on my way to work. And trust me, I’m not a crier. When I quit and went around to say my goodbyes, the employees were surprised. “You didn’t seem unhappy,” they told me. “You were always so cheerful.” Of course I felt bad for leaving, for now I was no longer the shield for them.
My point is, I try to stay positive and not let negativity get to me. But lately, I find myself being sucked into the negative side more and more, for there is just so much of it. I’m surrounded by people who bitch and complain all day and eventually that affects me whether I welcome it or not. I have to admit, it feels good to bitch. I mean, everyone needs an outlet to vent once in a while and I certainly have vented in more than one occasion to my hubby and friends. But there’s a big difference between venting and bitching.
So today is one of those days when I hate myself. For being bitchy, for being negative, for letting my bad side come out. The thing is, I have (self-diagnosed) anxiety. And when I feel bad, when I feel regret, my anxiety is fed and grows bigger. The only way to get rid of it is either to not think about it or to justify it. The latter is not an option.
The good thing is I’m aware of all of this, and just writing about it to a whole bunch of strangers who probably don’t give a craps ass makes me feel better. Because I’m admitting that I was wrong, that I’m not perfect, that I’m a beatch sometimes and that I’m embarrassed for the way I acted.
I know, what a silly thing to write about. Especially when there are worse problems out there than feeling bad about my reaction. And so out of sync with what I usually write in my blog. But you know what, I had to get it out of my chest. I should be better than that. I should be a better person.
Today, I asked someone to help me ship a couple of fragile items out. She said she didn’t know how to do that, so I explained it to her.
“Put them them in a box and tape it up using packing tape. Make sure you wrap them with bubble wrap first because they’re glass and are breakable,” I explained.
She replied, “Okay, sure. But I put them in a box first and then bubble wrap them, right?”
“Huh?!” I didn’t quite understand her question. “What do you mean put them in a box first?”
“I mean, put them in the box, and then bubble wrap the box.”
You’re kidding, right? Who does that? I was speechless for a few seconds because I thought she was pulling my leg. “No,” I replied after determining that she was indeed serious. “You wrap them with bubble wrap first, and then you put them in the box.”
She was quite persistent. “No, I think I should pack them in the box and bubble wrap the box after. That’s what I did when I shipped out the mug last time.”
I was bewildered. I had hoped she was kidding, but she wasn’t. What a conversation to have on a Thursday afternoon. It was my amusement for the day.
Once upon a time when I worked in HR, we introduced online pay statement, where employees could choose to have both their pay stubs and T4 online, or just their pay stubs. At the end of that first year, an employee asked me where her T4 was. I checked the system and as it turned out, she had chosen to have it available online, which meant she wouldn’t get a printed copy. I explained this to her and off she went to print it off.
She came to me that same afternoon, freaking out. She explained that she had printed it, and because we didn’t have a secure printer at work at the time, her T4 came out, free for viewing by whoever was at the printer. Luckily she went to the printer immediately so I don’t think anyone got to her T4 before she did. But she was fuming. She asked why the T4 was printed just like that, and why it wasn’t in a sealed envelope.
This was another “huh” moment for me. I had to explain to her that the printer can’t possible pick up her printed T4, stuff it in an envelope and seal it.
Seriously guys? Did you leave your common sense behind somewhere?
Have you ever come across a similar situation? If so, please share it as I can never get enough laughter in a day :).
Have you ever noticed a task listed under your job description called “other duties as assigned”? Have you ever questioned this during a job interview or your performance review? Probably not because when you’re interviewing for a job, you wouldn’t want to jeopardize your chances of getting hired. And during your performance review you wouldn’t want to say anything that could negatively affect your salary increase amount. Plus how bad could other duties be anyway?
So you nod your head and you smile and you say, “of course it won’t be an issue.”
So today I found myself stuck in a small meeting room with a whole bunch of flip chart paper and a couple of different coloured permanent markers. I had to do some prep work for a workshop that a third party is conducting for us. But I’m not the trainer and it’s not my session, so why did I have to do this again?
I spent a good hour in there doing kindergarten work. It required no part of my brain so I should have welcomed the break. But I had other things to do, other deadlines to meet. Not to mention that the fumes from the markers almost knocked me out. But don’t worry I’m alive! I neither got high nor passed out. Phew!
When I was in HR, I never cared. All it was to me was that we were covering our butts. By putting “other duties as assigned” as part of an employee’s job description, one the employee agreed to when he/she got hired, we made sure the employee could never come back and say, “it’s not part of my job description.”
I thought it was clever actually. If an employee ever complained, the answer would easily be, “Umm yeah, actually it is. It’s other duties as assigned.” I just love how HR is so clever that way. I’m smirking with amusement just thinking about it.
But wait. I’m on the other side now. I’m no longer in HR and I’m the one thinking, “What the heck? This isn’t what I signed up for.” Oh but it is. I’m constantly reminded by…well I won’t mention any names…but I’m reminded that anything and everything that is assigned to me is part of my job under other duties as assigned. Swell!
Don’t get me wrong. Playing with markers and pretending that I’m back in JK wasn’t bad at all. I’ve had worse. And I did welcome the break. I mean, our poor marketing admin had to stick 200 magnets at the back of 200 lapel pins the other day. Brutal. But someone had to do it right?
Yes, 4 years of post secondary education and we find ourselves performing other duties as assigned.