Saturday, February 7, 2009

On MSN Today

I need a page like that isn't - suggestions welcome! At my office, the homepage for the computer I use is set to, so I've gotten used to seeing all these links to little "articles." I click through and often get to read some pretty interesting things. Without, I would not have discovered The Slate or The Root, both of which have become regular reads for me, but I still find myself discontent - I want a little more substance without going all the way to style.

At any rate, today's links include a lot that have to do with WORK. Interesting to me in light of my recent post about how I'm wondering about changing my work schedule. There's 5 Ways to Fit in a Part Time Job, Why You Should Work Weekends, and even a feature on different treatment for single vs. married workers. Seems like I'm doing what everybody else is either doing or thinking about doing - working two jobs and working on weekends. These articles both point out the importance of having enough time to rest and take care of one's self which is my particular dilemma at this time - feeling so overwhelmed that I fall asleep at 9 o'clock every night.

I have to say that the piece I found most interesting though is the one about single vs. married workers. I haven't had the experience (yet?) of a different working environment or experience based on not being married, but I have noticed a difference based on not being a parent, which the article also covers. Since I look forward to being a parent some day, maternity and paternity leave don't really bother me, but I have been bothered by differing expectations and differing levels of response to requests for time off. For example, it has been my experience that a request for time off for a family vacation to Disneyland is looked at differently than a request for time off for a girls trip to Vegas. Both are fairly frivolous trips, but the family vacation is definitely higher on the priority list of managers, in my experience. Now, I really have no cause for complaint and haven't ever really had troubles with this to speak of, but my brain had latched onto this inequity and wouldn't let go...

...until I read this article. It's a great reminder that we create our realities. I LOVE "John's leave" and that this worker took his situation into his own hands. Rather than just be tired and resentful of covering for other workers leaves, he made appropriate arrangements to take care of himself. It's so simple yet profound. And instead of an us/them (married/single, parent/childless) mentality, focusing on individual needs acknowledges that we all have different needs and allows for the flexibility to meet those with solutions that work for the individual rather than policies that work for no one. I'm inspired, both as an employee and as a future employer.

I'm still not sure what to think about the Carrie Bradshaw part of things, though...

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