Revelation #2: Work’s Not All That

In honor of my very first book giveaway, This is not how I thought it would be, I am writing a series of posts about how life IS versus how I THOUGHT it would be.

Yesterday I talked about poop, which is not really an uplifting subject.  Today, I want to talk about work.

With complete naivitie and way too much influence of the world’s greatest quotes where Albert Einstein says ridiculous things like, “I never worked a day in my life,” I expected to find a career, practice it, and love it.  Every single minute.

Um… yeah.  That didn’t happen.

As I’ve spent more time in the workforce I’ve learned there are things about being employed that are NOT what I thought they would be:

Bosses aren’t always the bad guys waiting for the perfect worker to be their chum.  I guess I watched too many movies about coaches who are mean to their teams and then they have a sob-fest, they feel good, and win the national tournament.  Disney sells a good movie but, unfortunately, I had to learn that fairy tales and work don’t play well together.

I didn’t have a clue that 8 a.m. was so early.  Did you know that when you’re a grown up you have to go to work every day?  And if you don’t they’ll fire you?!  Guess what else, there’s no spring break, Christmas break, fall break, Easter break, etc.!  It was a genuine surprise to me that life in the real world doesn’t have scheduled time off and, sadly, that I wouldn’t have the money to pay for the trips even in my scheduled two weeks vacation time!

I had no idea that answering the calling for work God gives me to do outside of the home would create such angst in me about not fulfilling the stereotypical and traditional role of female. This is a subject with so many words I could write – BUT… if you want to see real people with real, profound thoughts, take a look at the comments that are happening on the giveaway page.  It’s amazing!

I didn’t know there were so many strange co-workers in the world.  I’m pretty stinkin’ blessed with my colleagues right now, but I have been in workplaces where… well, it’s bizarre and I see very clearly where the writers of The Office get their inspiration!  I once worked next to an obese, 60+-year-old woman who smelled of cat food who would daily tell me the excruciating details of her current one-night sexual exploits.  Detailed.  Information.  SO. STRANGE.

I didn’t realize organizations weren’t perfect.  I used to think workplaces always lived up to their mission statements.  Which is why I was so surprised to discover organizations are made up of faulty humans, like faculty/staff members doing drugs and getting drunk with their students or viewing their students as their dating pool.  That’s just wrong, folks.  (NOT where I work now, for which I say hurray every day!)

I had no idea that watching a student make a positive choice for their life would make me feel like a million dollars, too.  I didn’t realize I would genuinely care about the long term success of the people I saw walk through the hallowed halls of academia.  I get emails and notes from past students and it completely makes my day!

I had no idea that I would pay so much of my earned income in taxes.  I tend to get grumpy about this until I drive on a street with horrible pot holes and realize my tax dollars contribute to their repair.  But I still feel if the U.S. Government would pull together a think tank of 3 women who’ve been to Financial Peace University and 4 mothers of four or more adult children not only could we be looking at a balanced national budget, there’s a good chance world peace would be a done deal.

What things about your work life are Not What You Thought They Would Be?

Be sure to post a comment on the Giveaway post – the ruffians will draw a winner on Sunday and a lucky reader will receive a free copy of Kristin Maschka’s This Is Not How I Thought It Would Be: Remodeling Motherhood to Get the Lives We Want Today.  You Don’t Want To Miss Out!

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One thought on “Revelation #2: Work’s Not All That

  • April 20, 2011 at 4:38 pm

    I wholeheartedly agree with you about the 8:00 thing! Also about the no spring break and summer vacations thing. I have friends who are teachers and get the summers off, and while I understand that they put in an extraordinary amount of work during the school year, I’m still a little bit jealous of their breaks!!


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