after years of toxic positivity, I find myself in need of discouragement talks every now and then.
This morning the temptation was rising to go back to electrical work, which on the surface seems innocent. I thought about how I enjoyed solving those problems, and getting the appropriate tools. I thought to myself “maybe it was just that employer”
but my gut knows better. My gut reminded me of how much pain it was, working for incompetent people. It reminded me of the hours doing stupid stuff, like running metal pipes for wire to go through. It reminded me how I always felt tired and I couldn’t keep up. It reminded me how that job made me suicidal like no other.
and I feel guilty about it. I feel broken admitting defeat there. I can’t waste energy, I have so little right now…. it’s a dark place I find myself.
are all the jobs in your field the same? if you hated that one, aren’t there others with somewhat different roles you can do or take on?
does it not depend on the employer and coworkers? that’s how most jobs are. i’m not familiar with electrical work, but surely there’s *some* places that are better to work for than others? have you worked at other places and it’s all the same, or are some places less bad than others?
granted most work environments suck, but it usually varies from place to place, and from boss to boss, no?
i mean, i guess if you can swing not working and making more money, then you don’t need to. HOWEVER, idk about you, but for me, not working, not being productive, and not doing anything meaningful is a huge part of my depression. granted, a shitty job where you’re not happy is not good either. i’m just saying, if you can find an ok place to work, you’d be happier? idk if there are ok jobs or ok work environments in your field.
so what are you doing now if you’re not doing electrical work? are you not working or are you working just not in the electrical field?
if you are working but working in a job in a different field, why did you want albeit briefly, to go back? higher pay in electrical vs what you’re doing now?
i mean idk your field so if you think it’s a bad idea to go back to electrical…then don’t?
There are problems specific to the company, but also with the field in general. The company sold their soul to Walmart, and Walmart is the worst contracting client I’ve ever heard of. Then they were all quite conservative, which really conflicts with the whole better client relations thing. The entire problem is that Walmart is too big to say no to, they can make or break a company at will. So you aren’t really contracting with them, you’re employed by them, minus benefits or any sort of Osha protections.
In the six months I did it, it bugged me a lot how often the older workers would brag about all the horrible injuries caused by their lack of attention to safety. My last blue collar was with the gas company, who drilled it into us that it was either obey safety protocols or die. So my entire approach was unappreciated. I preferred to do things slow and correct, believing speed would come with time.
That was what ultimately broke me, the speed they were looking for. My pay didn’t change based on outcome, so I was really just putting in more work because they asked. Granted, I’m a pretty obliging person, if people ask I’ll usually try to make it happen. But they were expecting me to keep up with people that had been at it for 10 years, and I was, right up until I threw my elbow. They told me to go back to work.
The thing about joint injuries is that if you ignore them they get worse. I could have ended up fully disabled from their stupid job, and they weren’t going to pay out the disability claim. All this with no insurance, no retirement, and it frequently costing more to work than not to. (I was compelled to provide my own tools, drive my own vehicle, and provide my own food even when out of town.)
I want to still be roughly as healthy as I am now, at least, in ten years. I need to, because in this economy one has to keep working right up until death as often as not. That job couldn’t do it. The last three jobs couldn’t, the other two being in mental health.
The problem here is that the work itself, if it could be divorced the toxic job market, I like quite a bit. I love troubleshooting and taking stuff apart to figure out what went wrong. I can even like being pushed physically, as long as it isn’t to the point of near disability.
So right now it’s desk job or nothing, and that desk job economically has to provide at least twice what it costs on a day to day level. I’ve gotten the speech so many times from managers “we can’t afford that”, well I can’t afford to work for people who can’t afford me.
I have grad school starting in a few months for cybersecurity, so that’s my default right now. Honestly right now I’m barely keeping up with making that happen, and classes haven’t started yet. So that’s where my energy is going, trying to build up my daytime energy levels.
The temptation is there though; some immediate gratification would be quite nice. I’d like to have projects to work on that I didn’t come up with. I’d like to have some income…. it’s just where the market is right now. Employers think they can still pay what they did 10 years ago AND expect 2-4 times the workload. Worse still, some people are ready to deliver it.
So I’ve got two foes here; the employers who don’t want to pay for the work they want done, and the other workers willing to deliver that on empty promises of raises and promotions.
If I could get my energy levels back to where they were when I started electrical work, I could grow enough potatoes, onions and lettuce to live off of. Trading or going to the farmer’s market to get stuff like eggs and milk until I can get chickens and goats.
I’m probably not getting there this year, but it seems more achievable than finding a responsible employer..
It’s kind of like what we’ve been talking about concerning loneliness vs companionship. Companionship is wonderful, with a person that values you.
I’ve lived the other side. I’ve been used up for people who don’t care about me at all once I stop giving them what they want. That applies to romance and careers. They were quick as can be to cut me out as soon as their bottom line dropped, I’m treating them the same way; my bottom line has been in the black for two years out of my 15 working.
If it weren’t for my parents, who never cease to remind me that they will die, I’d be homeless.
but if you insist, here’s some demotivational posters for ya: