Stress!

I feel very stressed these days. I think that’s why I didn’t sleep very well last night……or that cappuccino at Starbucks was NOT a decaf!!

I think a little bit of stress in anyones life is good…..for me it is what drives me sometimes but when it starts to get a little over the top, it has the complete opposite effect….it overwhelms me and nothing gets accomplished.

It’s work that is causing this stress in my life right now and I really don’t like it.

Our “new and improved” system isn’t! At least not yet…..things don’t work properly, which just creates more work, manual work, temporary “workarounds” that become permanent workarounds, double work….or triple work….doing the same thing over and over, numbers changing, numbers on reports that you can’t validate, the list goes on and on. I always had a theory that you should only ever have to touch something once….take the extra few minutes to do it right the first time and you never see it or have to touch it again…..but now, it doesn’t matter how much time you take to do something, or in our case, day in and day out, fix something….you see it again and again.

It’s very hard to do a good job or at least one that you feel good about. Nothing gets finished…..it gets done “enough” to make it work that day or for that month end…..but it comes back to bite you eventually and just ends up taking more time AND more work to do it again…..and sometimes again and again!

If you have the nerve to mention this to someone…..you’re not a “team player” or whiner….or the worst “they’re working on getting it fixed, it just takes time” It would be nice if one manager, just one, would speak up and say “enough is enough….we need this fixed properly” MY STAFF ARE GETTING BURNED OUT”. but they don’t, none of them do! Some even try and pass the buck back down to the staff at the bottom….not blame perhaps but it’s the “if they had done this”….but they did what they could do with what they had to work with!! So as a result you start to not care…..because what’s the point? You can’t do your job properly, you can’t feel good about what you are doing.

I used to be very efficient, now though, no matter how hard I try to be, I can’t and I don’t like that……but what else can I do? I throw my hands up in the air and say I’m doing the best I can with what I have to work with. They want to know if something is correct, has this or that been done right? We honestly don’t know….we’re relying on the “system” now……this “new and improved” system that doesn’t work half the time. My new favourite line to say now, when asked if this is right, is…….”based on the reporting that I’m ABLE to get, this statement is correct”…..do I feel comfortable that the reporting is correct…definitely not! I’m always adding a “disclaimer” to everything I tell anyone now. I used to take pride in my work but I can’t anymore because no matter how hard I try, there is no guarantee that it’s right.

The biggest question though for me is DO I NEED THIS ADDED STRESS? This is bad stress…..not the good stress that gives you drive or initiative to tackle things. How long do I want to deal with all of this. Will it ever get better at work or are they going to continue to apply band-aides…..or ”CPR” as I like to think of it……. on a daily basis to keep everything going? Just stop, fix things properly….take the time to do thorough testing to make sure the latest “fix” hasn’t broken something else. But that never happens and at the end of the day we end up with yet more work. New systems usually mean a reduction in staff….because that new system is more efficient, right? That is if it works or even half works but that is far from the case right now for us…..we are all buried up to our eye balls in new work, workarounds, and that hole gets deeper and deeper every day….it’s like quicksand sucking us all down. I know I’m not the only one that feels this way…it’s very discouraging.

I thought this work stress would be a good diversion, keep me occupied, keep me motivated, give me lots to do and think about that wasn’t associated to losing Ken…..it definitely is but it’s not helping like I thought it would….and it’s causing me to not want to do the things around here that I need and want to do, I’m exhausted when I get home, I’m mentally burned out and almost a little depressed because each day I’ve just spent 7+ hours at work and accomplished nothing! I am crazy busy every day, every hour, but I have nothing tangible to show for it at the end of the day……I don’t like that at all.

I’ve always tried to not let work impact my personal like and more often than not, it hasn’t, but now I don’t have all the really important things and tasks that had to be done at home to focus on when I get here that I used to, as a caregiver, and I’m letting work take over, overwhelm me…..

I certainly don’t need to lose sleep over it, I have enough other things that could cause that, thank you!

This also means I need to think more about my future……when will I retire? If we ever get over all the hurdles and obstacles at work, will I like my job again…..would I be sorry if I retired now and regret doing it later? This adds to that stress too…..it’s my future, I’m forming my “new normal” and I want it to be good, to be the right route to be taking.

I hope today is a better day……..wish me luck!

L.

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