Saturday, September 28, 2013

Work vs School: the Lessons We Lose

     While talking to Bug the other day about school, I passed on words that have slipped off the tongues of parents for generations. When faced with a teacher a kids doesn't like we say "One day you will have a boss you don't like. This is just a lesson on how to handle them" or "Yes I know that girl that sits next to you is annoying, buy you won't always like your co workers" and the best of all.... " If I have to go to work you have to go to school!" In my own gripes about my new work place and listening to those of my co workers I realize like so many early on lessons, we haven't listened.

      I admit it. I miss my old manager and her OCD  ways. I miss the comfort of my neat little work spaces in the kitchen and the fact that even though we are all different in how we work, everything is done by the book and correct. I miss the fact that I had to think and had some sort of control over things. I am now a simple worker ant in a pile of dirt. There are pathways and tunnels that sort of make sense but we are still bumping into each other with food on our backs. The queen ant is safe in her order and neatness and we are all just the same to her. For weeks I have been so focused on what was and what I missed, I have been hating my job. I have forgotten why this manager wanted me so badly and why I decided to leave the other place... besides hours.

      I am a leader. I am the person who likes a challenge and rises up to the pressure and the stress.I have been living in the comfort of the past that I have been failing my co workers. They come to me to bitch and whine and I listen and remain Switzerland. I am trying not to rock the boat and just come in and work and leave. It has left me unhappy. This past week I kicked it all aside and put up the entire freezer by myself by Tuesday afternoon. I know I have team mates and one of them whom I consider my work Twin, is amazing. But this is how I work. I was taught and believe that all stock should be put up the day it is received, the next day at the latest. It makes it easy for me because it is the beginning of the week and I am not burnt out and it makes it easy for the rest of the staff to find what they need. This week I started to feel like me again. I have taken my little cashiers corner and made it my own. Yes I am OCD with my set up and literally had a panic attack over ketchup on Monday, after being out on Friday. But I got through it.  

    Some of the close working people are starting to get to one another. They are so focused on how they work differently from one another that they are constantly bickering. I have tried to stay out of it and not get involved since I haven't entirely witnessed situations. My staying out of it is making things worse. I see that now. They are looking to me for answers and I am also ignoring it. I don't have all the answers but I have some ideas. One of the women is leaving. She has become so righteous in her beliefs and that they are so correct. She is not taking into account that all of us are different. We come from different backgrounds and leave to different home lives. We are single moms and married grandmas. We are families of all sorts but we are all there for the same reason. We all need to work and this job fits all of our needs. I wonder how she will feel when she goes to a new school and she actually has to do what she is told. When someone says the correct way to do something she can't just walk away and say "Oh well, I'm going to do it my way" Will she run away from that job also?

      This leads back to those childhood conversations with our parents. We adults have become so soft and whiny. We bitch about jobs and jump from one to another because "Sally is mean to me"or "my boss doesn't appreciate me" When did we become a society of pussies. Really? There is always going to be the office bitch and there is always going to be crappy work days but each day is new and what you make it. We have to work. It is the way things are. We have to take care of ourselves and those depending on us. I know so many people who complain about how much they hate their jobs that the hate becomes who they are. They are so focused on the negative that when they are not at work they are still not happy. It ruins them. Yet look at kids. They put up with those teachers and those annoying kids. They come home and shed their "work" right inside the front door and surround themselves with what makes them happy. They turn on music and IM their friends. They watch TV or go to the park. They take our lessons and teach us a few back. It is about time we started showing them that we are listening just as much as they are.