Sunday, June 2, 2013

in search of balance...

Hi, my name is Karen... and I'm a workaholic.

The first step is admitting you have a problem, right?

So, last weekend, I made the switch back to getting paid hourly again. I committed to working 58 hours this past week... I worked 74. I almost took Saturday off - I only worked 2 hrs. It's a start! I always had it in the back of my mind that my next check will still be 1/2 salary since we get paid every two weeks and I really wanted a good paycheck!

Today starts a new week... and I'm trying to hold myself to 60 hrs. Maxing out the OT is fine for awhile, but it's been a solid 6 months of this and I'm officially burned out, esp after that stint getting salary and basically working for free half the time. I need to get my priorities in order. Last year I put all my focus on getting rid of the physical clutter in my life. This year, I need to focus on me and break that habit of feeling like if there's the option to work more, I should. My savings account is healthy, my RV loan is paid up far in advance and I rarely shop for anything but food anymore. It's not like I need the extra money.

I've always been the type of person who doesn't want to let people down. That, honestly, was why it took me as long as it did to put in my resignation. I still can't figure out why so many stay in that position. I figured out pretty quickly that I'd made a huge mistake, but I kept hoping it would get better and I knew my resigning would increase the work load for a good friend. Ultimately, it came down to... I'm responsible for ME and I have to do what's best for ME. If someone else is choosing to work 100 hrs a week when they only get paid for 40, that's their choice and not my responsibility. Now, I need to convince myself that I'm not the only one they can rely on to get things done and that I don't have to always be available. I need to take a step back and learn to relax again. =)


  1. At least you recognize your outer limit boundaries/limitations. It amazes me how many folks are in a crummy situation job-wise & could make a change but choose not for (fillintheblank) reason & yet continue on being absolutely miserable.
    I know I found myself dreading going into the office everyday to the point that I would park with my car in the office parking lot facing the exit (for a quick getaway) & would literally cry every morning for the last few weeks that it took to get me to make a change.
    I'm still futzing around a bit in this same profession, albeit in a totally different role, but I've got myself so far removed from the day to day drudgery that I'm even more convinced that I was seriously burnt out & won't do that to myself again.
    Anyways, enough about me - glad to hear you are taking the bull by the horns & making decisions that best honor you! Happy relaxing!

    1. Well, I'm trying... not always succeeding. They're pushing for higher and higher production on both the coding (no problem) and the QA side of things and it's getting tiring. They asked again for everyone to commit to a minimum 10-hr workday through the next months (and strongly suggested we commit to 12). Yeah... That didn't happen. I got myself a new plaything today... I'm hoping it will encourage me to play more and work less. :-)

  2. Oh, this comment is so familiar sounding: "I've always been the type of person who doesn't want to let people down." That was my problem for years. I always did more than was expected, performed above and beyond, and was there at the first call for help at work.

    It took me a long time to learn that I needed to take care of myself, too. Then it took a while to find the balance between taking care of myself and being available enough for everything else. Bottom line, though, is that NO-ONE else is going to put you first so if YOU don't make the effort to meet your own needs, it ain't gonna happen.

    1. Truer words have not been said. If we don't put ourselves first, no one will. I finally convinced a coworker to start taking every other Saturday off. He's been working 80-hr weeks since last Fall. Once he started taking that one day off every two weeks, he thanked me for suggesting it. Sometimes, we can't always see what we need. Work is pushing for more and it's honestly making me want to work less...


please be kind =)