Well, remember a post or two ago, when I mentioned I was considering a new job. Well, I've found a new job that I'm very excited about. Right now, I am working at both jobs, training someone to takeover at the old and training to learn my new responsibilities. It's crazy busy and I am exhausted. It's the sheer volume of stuff I don't know at the new job and trying to retain it is serious work. On Friday, I went to bed at 8:30 and I took a nap yesterday. But, I'm really excited about the new job. It's fun and interesting and challenging. It's a great office and I enjoy my new co-workers and it's work I feel good about doing.
Part of the reason I've been quiet is I've been working through all the complex emotions I have about the old job. I worked for a small non-profit and I loved the idea of working for a non profit, like the work was making a difference in the world. Like it was creating a greater good simply because it was for a non-profit. I really bought into the whole notion that I was doing God's work (which all non-profits reinforce with great intensity) and because it was God's work it was okay that I felt used or underpaid or overworked or stressed beyond reasonable expectations.
I feel like I'm justifying my decisions, but the fact of the matter is that how I feel is how I feel. Period. End of discussion. No one else needs to agree with or support what I'm saying, how I feel is how I feel.
I spent a long time contemplating this decision. It wasn't a rushed decision or a rash one. I had a couple of epiphanies through the process:
- All work can make the world a better place. Working for a non-profit doesn't make the work more noble or more fulfilling. It's what you bring to the job and what the job adds to you that raises the work to something more. It was really kind of arrogant or condescending or something to think about it otherwise-proof positive I have more to learn.
- No work should negatively affect your self-worth. If and when that happens, run. Run as fast as your little feet will carry you. There is always another place to work. Seriously, run. All that negative emotion builds up and builds up. Eventually it's going to come out. Either at work or at home. There is only so much a person can hold in.
Now that the decision is made and the transition has begun, I am happy, relieved, excited again. At one point in this process my youngest said "It will be nice to have a happy momma again." Sobering. I had no idea how much negativity and frustration I was bringing home. When I was sharing that with a friend, she said it begins to feel like a coat you put on, that weighs you down and affects every aspect of your life.
No job is worth your personal happiness. None.
Unfortunately for me, not only was the job affecting me at home, it affected me at work, too. I was so frustrated and well, pissed, that I had an argument at work which I'm not pleased about. I stayed there too long. I take responsibility for that. I did not call out the bully and I put up with the policies I didn't agree with. I take responsibility for that, too. Owning up to my part in the 'argument' at work is and was a real sore spot with me. Not that I take full responsibility for the argument, because it takes two people to fight. What I find upsetting about that incident is that I let my frustration push me into behavior that I can't abide. I don't like arguing. I am quite good at expressing myself and I tell the truth and I work hard to listen really well. I don't like arguing and I don't think it belongs in the workplace. Refer to #2 above. I don't like who I felt I was becoming in relationship to my supervisor.
No job is worth losing who you really are. None.
There are other gruesome details, which I'm not going to document. I really don't ever want to revisit it and I can't see how it would benefit anyone else. I want to move on, into the light. Suffice it to say, I learned a lot about myself, I will treasure most of the people I met there and I'm grateful, eternally grateful, for the experience. It sounds crazy, but I am eternally grateful for the entire experience, the good, the bad and the ugly.
Since I know to get where I'm going, I had to be where I was, there's no regret. While I might be disappointed with aspects, I learned there is still more to learn. And really, thank goodness for that. I mean, why would I even get out of bed every day if I were perfect?