Tag Archives: work

Is Your Job Worth It?

If you had to make a choice between your health and your job, what would you do?  I was faced with this same question over the last year and it was perhaps the most difficult one of my professional career.

Since mom and dad passed away, I’ve pretty much been on my own financially; taking care of the house, bills, food – you know – the basics.  It’s been a struggle, so being unemployed is not even an option for me.  But I learned an important lesson this year and that is this – leaving a job is far less important than losing your life.   But I’m getting ahead of myself….

Last year I started working at a local insurance firm; it was a good job, I was making decent money, I enjoyed the work and I got along with (most) everyone I worked with.   My main role was investigating homeowner claims; but I also paid the company bills as well as the company owner’s personal bills.  I wasn’t comfortable with the latter – but that’s a whole other story.

The first few months I was there, things were fine.  The owner liked me, my coworkers liked me and I was really enjoying my work; but I soon realized exactly what I had gotten myself into and how devious and unethical my boss really was.

Over the next several months, claims tripled due to a local storm; I was working long days and weekends to stay caught up and trying to keep all the bills for the company current.  But it wasn’t enough – I still remember that day in the conference room when he screamed at me and called me an idiot because his personal phone bill was due the following day and it had not been paid.  It was at that moment that my whole outlook on this job, as well as my life changed forever.

Because I was responsible for the office bills, I had access to all of the bank accounts for the companies we did business with, and my boss used this to his advantage.  There were things he told me to do that I knew were illegal and unethical and if I didn’t comply, the repercussions were horrible.  This became my daily existence and the effect on my emotional and physical health is something I’m still recovering from.

I had a ritual every morning when I woke up knowing I had to go to work.  I never slept the night before, and I would lie in my bed each morning, my heart racing, my chest hurting, sweating because I couldn’t breathe – dreading whatever the day would bring. My mind started trying to assess every scenario that could happen – what would I do if he got angry; did I do anything that I could get screamed at for; what names would he call me; could I get through the day without doing something illegal or unethical just to keep my job and avoid the wrath I knew I would endure if I didn’t do it?  It was a never ending cycle.

My appetite disappeared; I couldn’t eat anything – I self-medicated alot.  Xanax was my crutch during the day – I could not survive in that place without it – and vodka was my go-to when I got home.  I lost 24 pounds and at 5 feet 1 inch tall, weighing in at 95 pounds was not good for me.   Very few people know exactly what I went through there, and those that did begged me to leave my job.  One of my friends even told me I looked emaciated and that my eyes had no life in them.  I tried everything I could think of to try to hold on, but day after day my emotional and physical health got worse.

I think the final straw came when one of the employees decided to walk out one day, – frustrated and angry just like I was.  While I took the brunt of the boss’s anger, she got her fair share too, and with her gone, I became the one to blame everything on.  After that, I couldn’t get through a day without a panic attack – and the worst part was my heart rate reached as high as 115.  I was so scared for my health – I had to make a choice.

And I did.  I walked out three days ago and didn’t look back.  Even though it was hard for me because I really cared about the people I worked with, every single one of them supported me and told me it was the right thing to do.  Since I left, I have actually been able to sleep at night and although my appetite is not what it once was, I know at some point I’ll be craving the foods I used to.  Looking for my next job will be difficult; my ability to trust a company or individual I work for has been severely damaged and is yet another thing that I will have to work on in order to succeed.  This is an experience that I will never get over, but I will learn to live with it as best I can.

Emotional abuse is something that you carry with you every day.  It is not something you expect to find in the corporate world, and if given a choice, I’d rather be slapped in my face – the marks go away – but the words that are spoken will live with you forever.

If you are a manager or supervisor – whether in the small business world or corporate America – THINK before you speak.  Your staff are not your lackeys to handle your personal business, and they do not deserve to be spoken to in an abusive manner.  They are there to do a job just like you and will do it much better if you will treat them with respect and allow them to grow.



Patience??? Not!!!

Patience is not only a virtue; it is almost non-existent these days. People are in such a hurry to get where they are going, and gathering the information they need, they forget about how their actions may affect the people around them. I will say up front that I am not the most patient person. There was a time I would spend the money on a mani-pedi but now I just don’t have the patience to sit there anymore. Those rare times I have the extra time and money to spend on this luxury, I will indulge but the entire time I’m wishing they’d hurry up.

I can be impatient when I’m working too; even more so sometimes than anywhere else. I entered a new field about eight months ago and I’m still struggling to understand some things – that makes me VERY impatient because the last thing I want to do is look incompetent, which in and of itself is hilarious because impatience can lead to incompetence and vice versa. I don’t like being on edge about my work, I like to know why I am doing what I’m doing; which is perhaps why I started my own business of social media and administrative work because I enjoy it and I know what I’m doing. And my writing….still working on finishing my book and of course I am impatient about that. But I’m rambling here…

Despite my lack of patience, I periodically look for ways to improve this unfortunate flaw. I can’t say all of them work for me, but based on my research, these seem to be the top recommendations:

Deep, slow breaths: When you’re in the moment and can’t seem to get a grip, take five slow, deep breaths. While breathing, imagine yourself calming down until you feel in control.

Timetable: The best way to create a composed demeanor is to learn how to keep your emotions in check. Take note of the times of day you seem impatient, what is happening, and how the elevated mood could be avoided. Sometimes simply being aware of times that are challenging helps keep your emotions in check.

Practice active listening: Whether at the office or out with your besties, active listening encourages you to really listen and respond to what you hear, encouraging patience. Active listening engages the listener to re-state or rephrase the information heard back to the speaker. This creates greater understanding and reduces tensions, building a calm atmosphere for all participating in the conversation.

Talk yourself out of it: Why not?  I talk to myself about other things too!  When you’re itching to send that follow-up email even though you know it’s too early for a response, talk yourself out of it. Count to 10, tell yourself all the reasons why you should wait, have a quick discussion with yourself about the weather — anything that will keep you from being an eager beaver.

Stop being a perfectionist:  Whoa!  This one is tough for me!  We all want things to be perfect, but obsessing over the details can cause impatience when staying composed matters most. Use positive visualization to imagine that big presentation going perfectly or an important interview ending successfully, which encourages a resolved attitude even when things don’t go as planned.

Think big: Instead of focusing on your feelings, think of the bigger picture. If you can, remove yourself from the situation and take a few moments to think about all the elements that are causing you to feel impatient. Is this something that will matter in your life 10 years from now? Is it worth the time and energy you’re spending being impatient? Most often the answer is no. Instead of feeling frustrated, count all the things you are thankful for.

Be the bigger person: When your friend is running late, which in turn makes you late, be the bigger person and let it go. Instead of focusing on the issue, move forward with dignity and grace.

Write about it: Keep a journal documenting when you feel impatient. Write all about it, including as many details as you can, and how and when you calmed down. Once finished, read what you wrote. This will help you learn how to stay composed the next time you’re feeling overwhelmed.

Be considerate: Make a point to be considerate of others. Practice patience while spending what seems like hours in the busy shopping line or while waiting for your late bus. Try de-stressing the situation by taking a few deep breaths or striking up friendly conversation with someone next to you. Before you know it, you’ll feel better, and maybe you’ll have helped someone else feel less stressed too.

Zone out: Yes, I do this from time to time.  There’s nothing wrong with taking a quick break when you just can’t seem to calm down. Listen to some tunes, go for a quick walk around the block, read a book, or check your favorite websites, which will clear your mind and refresh your patience level.

Believe it or not, I did have the patience to research; lol…but I have come to the realization that I will always be an impatient person; waiting to move on to the next adventure. So I’m done with this post and already thinking about the next one!

Peace out!

Ref: http://www.dailyworth.com/posts/2369-how-to-be-more-patient#ixzz3HNJ9xGTj