How My Brain Nearly Exploded at Work!!!

It’s Thursday, kids. Or, as a colleague put it, “Friday Eve.” I think I like that better.

I’m sort of starting to de-stress about my work situation. Which only means that I finally pounded out my first brief, and no longer have to worry about it. Since I finished it, I’ve been thinking about why it was such a stressful time for me. Here are some things I’ve come up with.

1.) Short notice. I was told in a Monday meeting that I would be given more responsibility in the form of writing briefs. I was excited about this, until I found out that I had one due that Thursday, two due that Friday, and I knew nothing about the cases. Eek!

2.) Backlog. In addition to that stress, I also had a pile of “mindless” work on my desk. Up to that point, I hadn’t really had challenges at work, so I was spacing out the work I did in order to keep me steadily busy throughout the day. The “brief bomb” turned this somewhat clever plan into a fuck-up souffle, as this sort of work—marking where certain papers go in a file, documenting the receipt of said files, sending the files to FileWorld—never really stops coming in.

3.) Lack of clarity. This one actually ended up working out in my favor somewhat. When my boss said he wanted me to start doing briefs, he wasn’t specific as to which briefs I should be doing. This was a source of both stress and hope—would I have to do all the briefs, or would I be getting my “sea legs,” so to speak? It ended up being the latter, but I had some decent weight on my shoulders until a couple of days ago, when I asked my boss directly, to a reply of, “Fuck no, that would give you two strokes and a hangover.” The Boss can be okay sometimes.

After all the mental hullabaloo, I’ve been trying to re-think my work day. I no longer think it’s smart to come in with the “I get here at 8, I leave here at 5” mentality. I believe it’s time to compartmentalize or micro-manage or [insert another five-dollar word here] my day in order to streamline it, make the day go by quicker and get more accomplished. Now, figuring out how the hell I’m going to do that might be a trick, but it’s one I’m willing to learn in order to remove stress.

Any tips on this one? Are any of my twenty-something peeps also working the office life, or working a similar shift? If so, how do you break down your day? What helps you meet your work goals in a timely and efficient fashion? Comment with love.

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4 responses to “How My Brain Nearly Exploded at Work!!!

  1. I like your new layout!

    I have the “oh, I only work 8-5” mentality too. I rarely try to overachieve or be an added value. I do what I’m told and focus on my life outside of work. That really gets me down though. It is much easier to be happy when you try to put some meaning behing the work you are doing and try to feel good about it. That is hard to do though. Silly cubicles and ridiculous co-workers.

    YAY for it finally being Friday eve!

  2. Wellllll… I don’t get paid by the hour, so unless something major is going on I tend to roll in around 820 or so. It’s nice, traffic is less, so already a better start to my day. I have a nice routine started. I usually check email and proceed to get first cup o’ coffee. Between 9-930 I am ready for cup 2, followed by potty break between 10-1030. Usually work til lunch, where I try and take a walk after I eat, but doesn’t always happen. I try and do something completely unstimulating to my mind at lunch, like read comics, it helps me to destress and get ready for after lunch shenanigans. After lunch is usually more steady work til 5ish then its homeward bound.

    That however is an nice ideal day. Normally I have some meeting or call during the day, many times more. A lot of times I take about 20 mins to eat and then get back working on something. And often I am here late finishing up, or finishing up at home. And as I am not paid by the hour I don’t get any OT so my 50hrs last week = same ol’ paycheck.

    As far as suggestions for you, I try and set goals for today, for example today I want to get our new server up and running by COB. Probably won’t happen, and I might be here til 6 cussing at it, but its the thought that counts. I find that I feel better about things I have a list of things to cross out. So you can try that. Otherwise I would suggest a little opium during the day to keep stress down, and tranquillers at night.

  3. I just live for Thursday man. It’s all about Thursday.

  4. Ah! I used to work (when I worked :P) at the Ministry of Justice of my city (I was an intern) and my tasks were similar…I don’t have any tip…I’m sorry…my condolences..office work sucks 😛

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