All’s quiet on the work front


It’s been a while since I’ve posted anything about the day job.  The reason: I’m burnt.

Crispy critters.  Toasty-oats.  Done like the proverbial dinner.

I’ve been burned out since April or thereabouts.  It was about the same time that two things occurred to me:

  1. Regardless how well I plan and how hard I work, someone will inevitably ask me to throw everything out the window and do something completely different.
  2. Regardless how well I do, I will never be a regional consultant on a permanent basis.

I was just coming down off the high of achieving my training certification and eager to begin the next phase of my development as a certified trainer.  First, I’d have to assess a few other candidates, and then I could begin to coach.

In the next breath, I was told that the certification program was on hold.  Our internal college was in transition and it was unknown when the program would resume.  To date, I have heard nothing.

Though my performance and learning agreement (PLA) was fairly glowing, I knew I would not remain with the team.

I knew this to begin with.  My assignment was part of a deal and was never intended to be permanent.  It was difficult to hang onto this reality when everyone on my old team was telling me that I wouldn’t be returning.  My star was ascending.

Everyone on my new team was eager to keep me.  To his credit, my  new manager never so much as implied there was a possibility.  Fair enough.

I applied for two other positions, both of which I was screened out of because I lacked the requisite experience.  The only way to gain said experience?  At-level assignments, staffed through unofficial expressions of interest.

By the time summer arrived, I didn’t really want to remain a consultant, at least not in the position of regional training coordinator.  The landscape of the program I administered was ever-changing, and, as I mentioned above, all my hard work was largely disregarded.

Then I had to work even harder, and those efforts, too, ended up going to waste.

I began to hope that I would return to my substantive position, despite the reduction in salary.

Unexpectedly, the consultant pool I was in was extended to the end of August, incidentally the end of my acting assignment.  A couple of consultants had retired, and I felt that I might obtain one of those positions.

Until I learned that regionally, consultants were being centralized.  Now, if I wanted to be a consultant, I’d have to move, disrupting Phil and his job, and leaving both of our mothers (still independent, but aging) without a significant part of their support systems.

I’d already made it clear when I made the pool that I would not be moving.

So now, due to geography (ridiculous because most of our work is virtual) I am out of the running, even though my pool has been extended again, to the end of September.  It’s sad, because I have skills that are in demand.

Despite fishing my wish and getting back on the training team, it’s not the same.  I can’t help but feel that it’s a kind of failure.  I know that this is not the case, but my feelings are what they are.  I also feel bitter.

There was a time when I thought I would never be able to rise very far in the ranks.  Though my office is a hub, there weren’t very many opportunities for advancement.

That changed and I moved up two pay grades in as many years.  Now I feel that again, I’m “stuck.”

Don’t get me wrong, the training team is great and our manager is awesome.  The phrase “force of nature” comes to mind when I think of her.  I used to be so happy.  I thought I’d found my work “home” and was content to stay there.

It’s hard to go back when you’ve had your world expanded, though.

I’m just totally burnt out.  Most days I wake up asking myself if I can, in fact, go to work.  I’m so disappointed when I can’t find a reason to stay home.

So I’m going to be taking some time away from work starting October 15.  I’m hoping that the time off will allow me to address some of the negative feelings I have and return to work in a positive and productive frame of mind.

Priorities.  While I have debt, I need to keep them straight.

Does your day job get you down?  Do you have any options that can help you to recapture your love for your job?

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10 thoughts on “All’s quiet on the work front

  1. Melanie, I believe everything happens for a reason, and it’s clear yours is to ‘stop’ for a while before you run yourself into the ground. Like you said, this is a chance for you to have a break and freshen up – sometimes it’s what we need before we can explore the possibility of climbing further. Enjoy it while you can 🙂

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    • Thanks, Gemma. I’m grateful I have the option. Some people have to keep working, or go on sick leave to deal. I’m looking forward to catching up on sleep, writing like a maniac, and going to the Surrey International Writers’ Conference. I need to indulge the creative me for a bit.

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  2. I’m so sorry, Melanie. To be perfectly crass, IT SUCKS! To answer your question, YES, my day job does get me down at times. I make great money at this job and I love the work. My problem? I’m tired. At nearly 58, there is so much in life I still want to do – but I have to work. I’m very grateful for the job, but wish I could my cake and eat it too. Hang in there — maybe a break will refresh you.

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    • Marilyn,
      I, too, long for the eternally replenishing cake (aka money). Lacking that, I spend most of my waking life trying to earn it faster than we can spend it. I’m hoping that by feeding my creative self and making her happy, I’ll feel happier overall, or at least, I’ll be able to deal with not being so happy at work 😉

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  3. I’m so sorry to hear your work hopes have been thwarted. There are some firms that just lack the imagination to organise better and some that make blanket promises in the hope of not losing staff. You seem to have fallen between the two somewhere but at least you have the old position with a good boss to fulfill you temporarily.
    Hopefully the break will help you regenerate and perhaps give you a new perspective of how things must go in the future if you’e to sty with your current employer. It should also give you the chance to bring your creative side to the fore for a while.
    I hope everything goes well for you.
    xxx Huge Hugs xxx

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    • I’m hoping for that too, David. Unfortunately, government at any level seems to specialize in making decisions that are difficult to fathom. I’ll just keep on keeping on, as they used to say, and I’m sure everything will be fine in the future. I do what I can. It’s all that any of us is capable of.

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  4. ❤ They make it awfully tough to have ambitions in our line of work. I'm glad to hear you're taking some time off. After all your hard work, you've earned the rest!

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