Hitting the Wall

By Jon Hillenbrand In Photography, Stories

They exist out there waiting for us to run into them like unwitting street mimes. Bang, and your level of coping ability falls off to nothing. Today I hit the wall and realized that whatever dedication I feel to work, it’s all subject to the laws of physics running around in my head.

I work in the same room with two people who’s department I used to be in. But I advanced past them into Public Relations and they are still doing the same work. That’s fine for them, but I’ve been tasked with more important things. I’m not sure if that’s where the resentment comes from. Most days I only see them for a few hours because I’m off to a video or photo shoot. But working in close quarters with the same two people for over three years now is starting to be like a sour-tuned piano. You can only sing along for so long. And you just want to slam the cover down on the fingers of the bad players.

So my stressful job combined with an out-of-control shoot schedule were enough to keep me busy and occupied mentally for the past few weeks with barely a day of rest on the weekends. I was looking forward to a day off on Thursday to help cope with the schedule but it didn’t come soon enough. A death in the family didn’t help and the two people I work with being insensitive to cooperation and cohabitation drove me to the point where I cancelled my afternoon shoot and threw in the towel. Home by 1pm for once.

There’s a certain enjoyment I get from being the busiest, the toughest, and the least likely to complain. I enjoy striving to be the best at what I do. And I wish I had no limits. But that kind of committment rubs people the wrong way if all they want to do is slack off and read the paper all day. And there comes a time in a corporate enviroment where you realize that if you stay, you will either get in a shouting match or blow a vein in your head. And once you reach that point, it’s time to rethink things.

The top three reasons people quit working at my company according to their own Leadership Orientation are:

1) Don’t like your boss
2) Want more pay
3) Don’t like your co-workers

For the past several months, I’ve succeeded in having all three of these accomplished. But my current boss is quitting on Friday after 9 years. So I’ll lose one of those categories (or at least it will change to some new variable). But the other two are still significant. My job is a rarity. It’s not like there are tons of staff photographer jobs out there. I never see them listed anywhere and I count myself lucky to have this post here. But the seeds of change have been planted and the times they are a changing. Maybe something will happen with number three which will improve my life a bit. Maybe I’ll start to get paid closer to what I’m worth. I can put up with a boss who’s never around and only shows up to criticize, but if I have to work with two petty slackers every day who feel it’s part of their job to not accomodate my presence, then either they have to go, or I have to go.

1 Comment
  1. Jon Hillenbrand June 13, 2007

    Why removed? My interest is peaked.


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