I mean seriously, how many of us can say we love their job and we are really happy to spend 40-50 hours a week working at whatever drudgery has claimed us. How many of us can say that we are inspired or energized by our jobs, or that we wouldn't way rather be doing something else?
Don't get me wrong. I don't hate my job.
I simply endure it.
I work for a large company. My pay is barely above minimum wage. All my efforts get translated into profit which lines the pocket of some ridiculously wealthy CEO who I will never know. I sit hour after hour at the computer doing the same task. It requires a certain skill and intelligence and concentration. But it certainly doesn't require any emotional engagement and the only reward I get from it is the capacity to pay the rent. I spend 40 hours a week doing that. By the time I get home it's dark and I have no energy to do anything else.
Five days out of every week I give all my time, energy and humanity over to this "job"... and, you know what? I really fucking resent that. I resent the fact that I have no freedom to follow my heart; to do what I love; to work on all the creative projects I have which give me energy and joy. I resent that I don't get to see my loved ones or spend quality time with them. I resent that all my friends are too busy and stressed out with their jobs to make time to hang out. I resent that I am wasting this incredible life doing stress-ridden, mundane, small-minded things. I resent that I am getting older and my bucket-list just gets longer, and nothing on it EVER gets ticked off.
ISN'T THAT A CRAZY WAY TO LIVE?
Life is so short. So damn miraculous. This planet is so beautiful and full of the promise of extraordinary adventures. And here I am wasting my life away on a boring, contrived-desk job... just so I can pay my rent and survive.
How very sad.
And I have it easy - so many people I know are working 60 - 80 hour weeks. They never stop. Work seeps into their weekends thanks to always being "connected". Most of them work for the vague hope that one day it will turn profitable - so they can stop working. It's a carrot that is always dangling in front of their noses, egging them on, sucking away their energy, like an invisible vortex.
Isn't it disturbing that it is getting harder and harder to live a vaguely comfortable middle-class lifestyle and still pursue a meaningful life, without selling our soul to some bottom-choice career that steals our life-force away without us even realising it?
It's a weird element of our culture, that we believe we are free to choose how we live. We believe we are free to think however we think. But what kind of freedom is there in living like that? We are not free to spend our days how we would like to spend them. We are not free to sleep as much as we need to sleep. We are not free to look after our loved ones. W are not free to follow our passions. We are not free to get off this treadmill of work/buy, work/buy, work/buy ad nauseum.
As far as I'm concerned, I've never felt so unfree in my life.
Working 9 to 5 every day, 5 days a week, 49 weeks a year feels exactly like a prison sentence to me.
And the only way out of this labyrinthine rat-hole is to win the lotto.
What a grim and pathetic hope for the millions of miserable people out there.
But is it the addiction to always wanting more and the fear of not being able to actively pursue a robust relationship with consumerism that drives us to give away our freedom?
Or is it simply a terrifying lack of imagination that has us in its paralyzing grips?
Anyway - that's my whinge for today - because I came across this article, and it got me thinking.
Have a read:
by James Adonis
There’s a clever scene in the movie Con Air in which a psychopath talks fondly of famous murderers. Nicholas Cage eventually snaps, labelling them insane. The psychopath responds:
“What if I told you insane was working fifty hours a week in some office for fifty years at the end of which they tell you to piss off; ending up in some retirement village hoping to die before suffering the indignity of trying to make it to the toilet on time? Wouldn't you consider that to be insane?”
So let’s consider it, then. Working excessive hours might be OK if it’s a job you love. But isn’t it a little insane many of us work in jobs that make us deeply unhappy? For example, a study conducted in 2013 by the Australian Psychological Society found wellbeing, job satisfaction, and work stress have “significantly” worsened in recent years. Those factors are even worse here than in Europe where the force of the GFC has been merciless.
Isn’t it a little insane the corporate attire we’re forced to wear is actually an inhibitor to performance? Research last year by a trio of institutions, including the University of Wollongong, concluded formal clothing makes employees feel less friendly, less creative, less productive and less comfortable. That last one, in particular, is perhaps responsible for the eyesore that is the horrid suits and sneakers look on public transport.
Speaking of transport, isn’t it a little insane that work schedules are such that a majority of people start and finish at the same time thereby creating congestion of a variety that, for some of us, induces thoughts of homicide? Peak hour traffic in Melbourne is now 23 km/h slower than a decade ago, and Sydney is the world’s seventh-most congested city, just behind Los Angeles. Even buses and trains are packed to such an extent they’re a breeding ground for frotteurism.
Isn’t it a little insane that people resort to shiftwork even though they’re cursed not only with unsociable hours but also a wide range of afflictions? A plethora of studies document the much higher rates of breast cancer, prostate cancer, heart attacks, and vehicle accidents among those who work nights. That research also verifies the unhealthy habits, such as bingeing on snacks and forgoing exercise, that afflict shift workers. Meanwhile, their productivity at work plummets.
Then again, even the nine-to-fivers continue working well into the evening by an anxiety called ‘nomophobia’, otherwise known as smartphone addiction. Isn’t it a little insane that people are so hooked on these devices that any positive effects are eroded by the negative impacts? Heaps of research shows 50 per cent of us check our phone in bed, 44 per cent check it daily while on holidays, and 60 per cent work an extra 25 hours a week because of it.
Isn’t it a little insane we work in environments where bullying is a standard part of the landscape? Safe Work Australia released a report in 2012, which calculated that 7 per cent of employees had been bullied in the previous six months. That compares alarmingly to other rates around the world, which vary between 1 per cent and 4 per cent. The same analysis found bullying costs the economy $693 million a year. As a nation, we do workplace bullying really well.
Granted, this article has been extremely one-sided. There are, of course, many wonderful things about the way we work, such as the greater disposable income we get, which enables us to engage enthusiastically with consumerism. (Or, hey, maybe that’s not a good thing after all.)
So, look, I don’t know. You tell me. Is there something a little insane about the way we’re working?
Read more: http://www.smh.com.au/small-business/managing/blogs/work-in-progress/the-way-we-work-is-insane-20140829-3eiqb.html#ixzz3Bwsv4FiM
(click on book covers below for more info and pricing).
| || || || |