(It’s been about a month since last I wrote…and apparently what’s been holding me back from spilling more than 140 characters at a time is the lack of complete thoughts about what’s going on right now. The following post was written over a period of about a week…you’d think there would be more words given that length of time, but, alas, I’m still a bit clammed up about all of this)
I’m at a stage in my career where I think I need to learn the fine art of letting go, detachment, removal of self from work. Whatever you want to call it, I think I care too much about my work environment and what I do for a living and it has a bit of an impact on my well-being (just ask my husband). Statistically, once we’re “all grown up”, we spend more time deskbound with colleagues than we do couchbound with loved ones. The people we surround ourselves with in the office environment become family. You begin to care about their wellbeing and they about yours.
About a month ago I learned that my assistant’s position was being eliminated. When she was brought on back in August, I was on cloud nine. Finally, someone with whom to share ideas and talk about fonts and bad images and design. A breath of fresh air for this stale tenured artist. I would literally be bouncing around the house when speaking of her to my husband. People around me noticed a change in my demeanor both in the office and at home. I became more pleasant to be with. Less stressed. More relaxed and at ease with everything. I felt a little more inspired to look at ads a second or third time, finding new ideas and new ways of getting things done. An old dog learning new tricks, rejuvenated by the young, fresh out of school artist.
In my tenure with the company I’ve never been around people who’ve been laid off, and now I sit here sharing an office with someone who will be unemployed come mid-January. The news hit me particularly hard because not only am I losing a coworker and a friend, but I’m also losing the only other person in the office who does what I do. A colleague, a peer, someone who gets what happens on a daily basis…I had gotten used to having her around, changed my workflow to accomodate someone other than me, reorganized how I organize to make more sense, learned how to share…and now that’s going away. It’s nothing personal, of course…just business. In the grand scheme of things I really need to learn that it is just that. Business. It’s just a job. It pays the bills. It isn’t my entire life. But at the same time, it is a rather large part of my life. Some of this probably comes from the fact that this has been my only job, my only employer. It’s been here for me when other parts of my life weren’t all hunky dory. The rest of it probably comes from the fact that I put 110% into just about everything I do in life…which doesn’t leave much room for detachment.
I should be thankful that I have a job. I should learn to leave it all at the office. I should learn to network and communicate more with those in my field (who, obviously, won’t be in my office anymore) so that I don’t feel so alone in the workplace. These, I suppose, are all good things to work on going into 2009, attainable goals…easier said than done. But, it’s nothing personal.