364 Days of Change

This 365 days didn’t take a day off into account. That’s a solo business owner thing we need to change.

Oliver Wolf Foster Cat @inkhoneypub Photo: KHenry

I never give myself a day off. Many people who are working as indie people are working harder than if we had decided on that quintessential 9-5.

Yesterday, I wrote #364 ~ then put it in the can until today. Why was I working on a Sunday?

Because I’ve always worked on Sundays. Work never had a label for me. Non-Traditional work/life balance has been my way of life for ~ well, as long as I’ve been a human.

Then, I started thinking about this ~ why do we all start on Monday?

The optional 5, 4, 3 work week has pros but it also has cons. ONLINE work is wonderful (to toss in a positive), but some companies are also forcing people to BE at their desks in front of their cameras ALL day long ~ watching them. That’s a prison ~ a digital one that it so unnatural, it’s unhealthy.

Micro managing is already a heinous trend ~ doing so while watching people through their window sends the message that you don’t trust anyone at all. If you have to babysit your employees, then you failed as a leader.

Let’s be honest ~ something people struggle with in the world of work ~ biases and a lack of trust turn ordinarily nice people into terrible bosses.

Why do we work five 10-hour days (that’s an 8 hour day + commute + the forced lunch + 2 15-minute breaks that round out to no life outside of work). School children in Europe are treated with more dignity and respect than any average American worker.

Did you know that?

OR, this insane notion that nurses have to work three 12-hour days. Do you want a nurse caring for you in those last hours of a 3-day stretch? Nope. I don’t. I don’t get who came up with that model, but it’s a dangerous one. The human body isn’t meant to stretch to exhaustion.

I’m not a nurse, I just think about their well being ~ about every job and the well-being of those in those jobs.

People who are salaried are expected to not only work extra hours, but they are also expected to ‘show up’ at the extra-curricular activities on their own time, just to stay in the game. That’s also taking advantage of people.

I scarified being part of that so I could be home with my children. Others in my field flew past me because work came before concrete family time. They loved the cocktail parties, the networking events, and the weekend get-a-ways. Not me. I paid for it.

My biggest disadvantage in this battle to be accepted is that I didn’t go drinking with them. Any of the groups of people who flung themselves onto the nepotism pyre.

I get it. Some people like the mental toll it takes on their system. Adrenaline junkie is the term that comes to mind.

Then again, I watched a documentary on how cashews were harvested. Those poor people have a terrible job. I am currently also thinking about the people of Ukraine who are running for their lives because of the dictator trying to kill them and the people of Russia who are terrified to protest, but have had their lives destroyed by their own government.

And the people who are expected to be thankful for being offered $12 an hour, which wouldn’t even pay for both gas to and from work along with any sort of life, and yet, wealthy people are complaining that they are ‘lazy’ ?!?!?!?!

I wonder how many people learn about the jobs of others on a global basis before making assumptions about what constitutes work or pleasure.

Do you, learn where your food came from, or, the clothes you wear?

I once assigned a report to my undergrad. students to trace their outfits all the way back to the people and place where their shirt was made. Do you know? Shouldn’t we know? Some complained and said it was “stupid” while others turned it into a part of their careers.

We can only bring what we want to bring to the table, from the worldview we live in.

What about Ukraine? I had no idea that so much unclear energy was there. We should all be so much more concerned than too many people are. Do you know that people from around the world are hiring Ukrainian surrogates to carry their children? There are currently 22 newborn children who can’t get to their American families because of this war. They and their nannies are at risk.

This isn’t just a single country ~ no matter what the NATO rules of engagement are.

Trust me on this one ~ domestic violence, narcissists and sociopaths do NOT care about rules, nor do they follow them.

There are some powerful influencers out there pitching the idea of working every moment of every day that they’re awake. Gary Vaynerchuk is always ‘on’. I suspect he’s a bit of a grifter, but that’s just based on how he comes across as the antithesis of mental health days. Does he seem like a work-a-holic to you? He’s pretty pumped up on dopamine and ego. By the looks of his behavior and sunken in eyes, he’s pumped up on something else too. But that’s just my professional opinion.

Some people like that. The rush of being always busy. Others have a healthier sense of a balanced life.

Again, the Europeans are more productive with a deeper sense of mental health and quality of life values than Americans. Here? We work “like dogs” to “the bone” but there? They give 4-week vacations + many other days to refresh and rejuvenate the mind/body/soul. They get more done. We go to meetings where the middle manager talks about her cats or his golf weekend for two hours.

A boss who wants to be a Gary, is a boss who will push his employees to never get a break.

He also looks very unhealthy, exhausted tired, and detached from his own life. That’s just how I see him. It could be an act for social media, but I don’t think I’m wrong.

That’s another story for another time. No golf weekends, or beach get-a-ways with ‘the girls’ for this girl. Ever. I lost people who didn’t want to invite me, knowing I couldn’t afford their life style. I didn’t want to hang out with the sort of people who judged others based on their wallets either. A win-win for all, IMO.

I lost friends along the way, ’cause most of the women I knew were SAHM’s who had wealthy husbands. I couldn’t put my kids in summer camps so I could play golf all day, while lunching with the ladies.

Work is all I’ve ever known.

This year, I fully plan on embracing working smarter, not longer.

Why aren’t more people doing that?

Because society thinks it’s normal to glorify work over relaxing or savoring.

Today, I think I’ll stitch a writing tour around the topic of ‘savoring’ ~ as a way to celebrate Monday.

Blaming Monday’s for how we live our professional lives is just silly.

Savoring ~ seems a much better way to live.

Today’s Challenge ~ Get some work done but find time to SAVOR ~ no questions needed at this time.


@happinessnoir @inkhoneypub


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