Night

Flashy tights. 

Trashy sights. 

Slashing lights. 

Intersecting, bisecting, trisecting, dissecting

the night. 

—Linus Fernandes. 

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Managing stress in the workplace

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Anyone in a stressful job can burn out.

And we do burn out.

What is your unique situation?

Do you know the stresses in it?

Can you take control of them before they control you?

There exist various causes of stress at work.

Some of them include:

  • Difficulty obtaining information required to do your job
  • Reticent or uncooperative bosses, clients, customers, co-workers and subordinates
  • Canceled projects—after the work’s done
  • Unreasonable or unclear deadlines
  • Unwieldy tools or equipment for which you have received little or inadequate training
  • Office politics
  • Occupational injuries

Burnout is a situational problem.

It is not an individual failing.

Most stresses leading to burnout are caused by organizational and environmental problems.

Some stresses can be changed; others cannot.

Many unchangeable ones can be borne if there are sufficiently significant rewards. These are the ones we accept as ‘part-and-parcel‘ of the job—but only when we’re paid for tolerating them.

What we need to do is distinguish between the ones we can solve and those we have to live with.

For stresses that can be changed, take action.

The more control we have on them and the more we can set our own limits, the less likely we are to burn out.

For problems that cannot be altered, cultivate support groups.

Gather sympathetic peers, use stress-reduction techniques, and extract pleasure or meaning from some aspects of your job viz. look on the bright side.

Take up problems that can be rectified with your manager.

Phrase the problem in a non-blaming and non-threatening manner. Suggest one or more solutions. Be involved in the solutions.

Be confrontational if your manager cannot be your buffer. You have to be firm and set boundaries and insist on the information required to do your work.

Avoid judging co-workers.

Express your appreciation of them at every available opportunity.

Ask for feedback; offer to give it.

Include a healthy dose of praise with diplomatic, constructive suggestions.

Allocate time in your busy schedule for rest, relaxation, recuperation and exercise. You are not a machine and neither are your colleagues.

Enjoy the inherent joy in your work; seek not just the extrinsic rewards.

Should you leave or stay?

If none of the above works, focus on your long-term goals.

They can help you quit when the time is right, by providing a vision of a happier future.

Finally, beware of overwork and the resultant occupational injuries it can bring. Seek medical help when needed. Remember, prevention is better than cure.

(Adapted from Chapter 18: Hazards of being a Tech Writer of Janet Van Wicklen’s Tech Writer’s Survival Guide)

180 Degrees: Turning Point

In response to The Daily Post’s writing prompt: “180 Degrees.”

They say you’re connected to the entire world,

by just six degrees of separation.

In that case, what’s 180 degrees on views, decisions or acts?

Opening or closing oneself to possibilities?

Six degrees of separation: Artistic visualizat...

Six degrees of separation: Artistic visualization. Français : Visualisation artistique du principe des Six degrés de séparation. Nederlands: zes niveaus van scheiding Русский: Иллюстрация к статье Теория шести рукопожатий: (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Do Not Disturb: Permission

English: In Egypt Internet is OFFLINE but stru...

English: In Egypt Internet is OFFLINE but struggle is ONLINE! (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

In response to The Daily Post’s writing prompt: “Do Not Disturb.”

Do not disturb.

Do not disturb.

Do not disturb.

Disturb me offline and you’ll find me online.

As for disturbing me online, well, that’s not that easy.

I can always switch off, block or simply unplug.

After all, the web is permission-based—mine.

Online privacy follows offline privacy.

If you respect one, you’ll respect the other.

Childhood Revisited: Ghosts Past

In response to The Daily Post’s writing prompt: “Childhood Revisited.”

There are a lot of things I wish could be different,

But I know I can’t change a thing,

Let ghosts past be ghosts past,

The past cannot be changed,

And history is written by the victors.

It’s the present that ought to change,

Change to make a better future.

Baggage Check: Historic decision

In response to The Daily Post’s writing prompt: “Baggage Check.”

Complicated histories,

Simple men and women and children.

That’s the story of each human’s life.

Decisions based on past experiences,

decisions that will affect our futures.

Seems imbecilic.

Yet, what’s that saying again,

“If you forget history, you are condemned to repeat it.”

Hell, I’m confused, perplexed, stupefied, paralyzed!

English: Decisions, decisions. The road on the...

English: Decisions, decisions. The road on the left is the “Glen Road” running down towards Loch Avich. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)