Tuesday, September 15, 2009


So yesterday I was in a pretty negative place regarding my job, career, employer. It's interesting how all those three words seem synonomous, but they really aren't the same things at all.

Anyway, today I woke up feeling a little more positive, even though I work 1:00pm to 9:00pm today and somehow have overbooked my schedule. I was in a slow line at the grocery store this morning and started contemplating my complaints about my job. Several different realizations developed.

I have pretty much been complaining about my job since I graduated from grad school. I have periods of time feeling a little more settled and secure, but even when I was working in Central Illinois I was job hunting for something "better."

I think of people I know-- my parents, my husband's parents, my friends' parents--and wonder how many of them worked for years, maybe decades, at a job they didn't like or even hated, just to provide for their family, pay the bills, maintain insurance, put food on the table. I think of my dad, who, at 66, still doesn't seem to know what he wants to be when he grows up. He worked many different jobs over the years, I know he sometimes did jobs he didn't enjoy but he did it to provide for his family. I think of people working in factories, working overnights, working at whatever job they could find. Not because they loved the work but because they loved their people at home.

Somehow, over the years, the myth emerged that a happy and fulfilled person should love their job. Yet I think of the people I know and how many of them truly love what they do for a living? Not too many. Or perhaps they love what they do but not where they do it or who they do it with. But day in and day out they go to work and deal with it. It's the hard thing to do, but it's the noble thing to do too.

So maybe it is completely unrealistic that I will have a job I love or love what I do. Truly most days I have liked doing counseling with children and adolescents. I think lately it's just been overwhelming and hit a point where my frustrations are just boiling over. I think this stems from lately having to deal with a few too many crises and not enough feeling extremely helpful or effective. Oh yeah, and yet another instance of a family member of one of my clients questioning if I am "effective", which makes me question my abilities all over again. Somehow I forget all of the clients I have worked with "effectively", who have made changes and have gotten better...

Meanwhile, I will continue to job hunt and just try to muddle through. I know in the long run it is the noble thing to do.

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