Tag Archives: Work

I Don’t Know Who I Am Anymore

It’s not my usual style. But at the same time I felt the need to share. Especially for those who also don’t have a clue who they are right now either.

The truth is, I am too tired to even know who I am anymore. The only thing I seem to enjoy in this world right now is sleep because I am so damn deprived of it. And even when I manage to get loads of sleep, I still feel like I am roaming around like a part of the zombie apocalypse that modern society is creating with its “work ethic”. I get up tired. I go to work tired. I deal with children all day who have behavioural issues and many of whom don’t want to learn. I sit through meetings asking us to do more. I get given more work and then I go home. Once I get home I am too tired to cook dinner so in goes the microwave dinner discounted from Sainsburys. I then sit like a vegetable, take in some semblance of a story line from Law and Order, churn out some more work, then attempt to sleep while my brain still stirs with stressful thoughts about work. After 6 or so shitty hours of tossing and turning and dreaming about stressful crap,  the whole thing resets itself and on goes the Groundhog Day. I get to the weekend and all I dream about is sleep to try and catch up on what I have missed.  The truth is a weekend is never enough. And if I do go out and try to socialise I feel even more exhausted for trying to have a normal life. I took some time to go home and rest and was confronted with a whole lot of things that weren’t great and quite emotionally confronting. It didn’t allow me to get the rest that I needed. I came back feeling numb and unable to process any of the feelings I had about anything.

And with that, I decided that something has to change. When all you do is the daily grind and you are too tired to even remember what you like anymore let alone do any of the things that you like then your life isn’t about you, it becomes about feeding into the system. A system that I always said was not as important as my quality of life. And yet somehow I find myself swallowed so deeply in this system that I am not entirely sure how to get out. It makes me question how society teaches us our value as a person and how to foster our self worth. Because everyone trying to make a buck on this earth will have you believe it is proportional to how hard you work for them. Which is a load of shit.

I know right now I am not the only person on the planet that feels this kind of exhaustion from being abused in a system that doesn’t love you and doesn’t want to help you. I have to remind myself constantly that nobody’s gravestone ever said “was awesome at their job and spent loads of time working”.  In the end of life people value who you were to others and whether you were a kind and good person. It’s hard to be these incredible things to others when you have no time for yourself. It is hard to be amazing and kind when you’ve given so much of yourself to your work that you have nothing left for yourself let alone others. It is hard to remember how to be excited and how to feel anything when all you feel is tired.

And with that I made my decision.  I quit. I gave my notice, I booked my bus to leave. Then I booked a flight to the place I dream of. And so I plan to go and find myself. To remember who I am. Remember what I like. Remember how to go and have fun. Remember how to be loved fiercely. Things I barely remember right now, but know deep down that these things are so very important. Because this life is short. And I choose to live it. For myself, and for those that can’t anymore. I’m taking back life.

 

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Teaching, Stress and Depression

Hi. I’m a teacher.  I am stressed to the eyeballs all the time. Because of this I find myself not sleeping, lonely, gaining weight and slumping into a state of depression.

Everyday I get up and travel an hour on public transport to get to school. I teach long days and am at school between 8.15 and 5.30 most days. After this I travel another hour to get back home and I attempt to go to my boxing class that I normally love. Some days I am so exhausted I can barely keep my hands at my face. Some days I don’t have it in me to even punch the bag. So I turn around, go home, attempt to make dinner, shower and get to bed. I usually don’t find myself in bed until some point after 9pm. Then I sit down to try and do planning. Or marking. Or some other form of work. I get 6 odd hours of sleep and the cycle starts again.

By Friday I am so exhausted I can barely function. I go home and go to bed and sleep for 10 hours just to make up for the lack of sleep during the week. By the time the weekend rolls around I have to actively force myself to do things or try and see people. For the most part I feel like I don’t have the energy in me to move. I don’t have the wittiness to hold a proper conversation. I am just spent. I am depressed. And come Monday, I have rested just enough to take the edge off to start the cycle again. I do this for 7 weeks in a row until I have really burnt the candle at both ends and then I get a week to try and get myself back on track before it all starts again. And I dread it. If I force myself to go and do something, I start the week off even more tired and the cycle continues. I don’t have many friends here. The friends I do have I see every couple of weeks. I don’t have time to date. If I met someone I would barely have time or energy to spend with them, not that they would probably want to spend time with me anyway considering the kind of person I have become.

I hate how negative I have become. I literally hate everything. I find no joy in anything I used to. I resent that for someone usually so social that I cannot be bothered to speak to people. I resent that for every time I try to make a positive change that I feel like I am pushed backwards by some other problem I have to deal with or more work that I have to face. I resent constantly feeling like whatever it is that I do is not good enough. To the point where I don’t feel like I am enough anymore. I am not enough to be in a relationship. I am not enough to be someone’s mother. I am not enough to do this job. There just isn’t enough of me left as a person to be anything that I once even thought I wanted. And yet for the sake of others I spend the entire day pretending like everything is fine when it really isn’t.

If it is not enough to have to mark piles and piles of exams. I have piles and piles of books to mark. Eleven piles actually. Every three weeks so they can be taken away and ‘scrutinised’ by someone who can tell me I am not doing my job well enough. Oh and the homework marking. Then there are the endless observations chewing up your free time. The neverending behavioural issues that never get dealt with and then get worse because they never get dealt with. The constant fighting and arguing with disrespectful kids who do not feel that they have to follow any instructions you give them or even speak to you in a tasteful manner. I don’t want to do it anymore. I feel like my life isn’t mine and that I am running on autopilot. I don’t remember a time when I felt rested. I don’t remember a time I felt good about the things that I was doing and good about my job. I don’t remember when I last felt good about living. And yet I am stuck dealing with this and I don’t know how to get out. All I know is this….

When you have nothing of yourself left, you have nothing of yourself to give.

Teaching is too stressful. And too much stress leads to depression where I am concerned because my hormones and cortisol levels become really unbalanced. And that is no way to live a life. So what now???

Things I Have Done To Make Money

As I approach the first “grown up person job” in a while, I thought it might be fun to look back on some of the crazy different jobs I have worked and other things I have done to make money to fund my travels…. Some of it is pretty funny so enjoy!

  • 14  years old…. 1st job… KFC. Did it so much some nights I would come home and dream of putting chicken into a box with tongs… nuff said!
  • Singing in pub bands. First pub band was Freefall and some of the best times of my life. Started at 17, still somewhat ongoing. On and off I have played more gigs with bands such as Alphanumeric, Platinum Datsun,  Multigroove (Melbourne) and quite a lot of acoustic duo work.
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Typical Friday evening pub gig at the Royal Oak Hotel in Launceston, Tasmania, with my good friend Andy.

  • Driving a 50 ton suspended crane in an aluminium smelter. 12 hour rotational shifts in the baking furnace baking carbon anodes to be used in the electrolysis process. Dirty and hot work.
  • Farming… cabbage harvesting, poppy seed harvesting, broccoli harvesting, organic farm work, more poppy harvesting….
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Eastport Organics Farm, Newfoundland, Canada where I gardened and weeded for a week or so for food and accommodation.

  • Laboratory technician for a biotech company. Mostly sterilization, chemical solution preparation and dish washing.
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Hanging out with my good mate Cyril the Skeleton in the lab.

  • First Year Chemistry Department at Monash University. Fingers in so many pies here…. Laboratory demonstrations, tutorials, exam marking, practical design, preparation of chemicals, troubleshooting, the one on one help centre.
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One of my lab classes at Monash University in the First Year Chemistry Department.

  • Folding children’s clothes at a kids clothing shop.
  • Selling watches and handbags
  • Selling hair and make up products at Aveda.
  • Singing in the drag bars of Toronto as support for Drag Queens or as a part of ensemble shows. I swear this was one of the most fun jobs I have ever done! Too good!
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Another Christina Aguilera number in Crews and Tangos, one of my favourite Drag Bars to sing in.

  • Medical testing…. I have written a blog post about this. I spent a lot of time doing non invasive brain function tests for the hospital research centre.
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Chilling in the the medical research lab with my EEG cap on ready to do some testing on perception of musical tones

  • Walking flyers and posters around the neighborhoods.  I have done this for at least a good 3 months every day.
  • Online reviews of cities and hostels.
  • Driving forklifts, doing crop reception and sweeping and shoveling for poppy harvest.
  • Substitute teaching and short term contract teaching involving every single subject you can possibly think of including kindergarten music.
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A surprise some of my year 7 students left on the board for me on my last day of teaching them for 3 weeks.

 

  • Can collecting and bottle return… (may or may not have stolen cans from campground recycling bins throughout eastern Canada to fund our accommodation and petrol bill.
  • Online surveys
  • Focus groups
  • Cleaning and managing the front desk at a backpackers hostel.
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Cleaning at the hostel was dirty work. The “Friendly Morning Cleaning Lady” left lots of interesting notes, like this one with regards to the handsoap in the mens shower…..

  • Promotions and marketing…. now this is a big one because each of the jobs I do are different. Many many sampling programs for things like milk, shampoo, icy hot packs, cans of Nestea and Quakers bars. There is also lots of hustling different contests. Below we will specify some of the more ridiculous jobs.
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Looking like a Ghostbuster while distributing free hot chocolates to the masses in winter.

  • Driving a popsicle van for 3 weeks.
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Chillin’ in my popsicle van and distributing the joy of flavoured ice.

  • Dressing up in ridiculous costumes such as Shaun the Sheep or Dorothy from the Wizard of Oz.
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Dressed as Timmy the Sheep and trying to hide from all the kids during break that were pulling on my tail and grabbing at me. Hard and hot work.

  • Placing stickers on men’s urinals in pubs so they can pee on teams they don’t like.
  • Filming a commercial for Edo Japan as the Edo Elf.
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Out on the streets as the Edo Elf. This guy told me all kinds of fun stories about his days in the Masad…. ummm… yeah right…. not quite sure about that one.

While this is a non-comprehensive list as I am sure I have probably forgotten something, it is still pretty ridiculous and funny. What is the worst job you have ever had? And better yet, is there anything here you’d like to know more about? Happy reading and I look forward to your input! 🙂