Friday, August 13, 2004

Why I haven’t been blogging
What happened was that one day I discovered that I could invest very little of myself in my job and get exactly the same salary. Civil servants, nu. There was, is, I believe, in my department, an atmosphere of nonchalance, of irreverence, of things-will-work-out-by-themselves-even-if-we-don’t-work-very-hard-or-worry-ourselves-or-stay-late-or-take-things-very-seriously. Easy street. This was the preferred attitude of a young boss who came. And everyone loved it (Even though things didn’t work out by themselves. Things went rapidly down hill and stayed there).

I hate to admit it, but for a long time this situation suited me down to the ground. I was burnt out from the pressure of the former, more dedicated, more work-yourself-to-death-and-get-shouted-at-for-you-efforts attitude to the work that was strictly enforced by the tough previous boss.

And then Mum was ill and that demanded much mental energy, even before the period that she was lying on her deathbed. And I had started blogging, also a time consuming occupation, and much more rewarding than work. My job, my livelihood, could not have interested me less. So after my initial shock and disapproval of the new situation, I just settled into it, too timid to do anything about it, on one hand, and too distracted to really care, on the other.

Then one day I woke up and was horrified by what I saw. My department was a shambles, an unrecognizable shell of the fearsome, efficient, person and time consuming machine that it was before, the famous machine that had got the job done better than any other, that had held the admiration of the whole organization.

And then I spent a long, long time being angry and disappointed at the powers that be that had let it reach this point, while denying it was their fault and pointing the finger everywhere else. I was angry and disappointed and offended.

This led me nowhere good.

And now I have had a change of heart. I have looked at myself and seen that I have contributed to this situation, to this negligence. I enjoyed the situation and took advantage of it to my own ends.

Just because I could get away with not doing my best, not doing even near to my best, just because I could, just because that was what everyone else was doing, was inexcusable.

Maybe they were doing their best after all, it was just that their best was less than what I thought it should have been, or what I knew I could do.

It feels uncomfortable to be even thinking such thoughts, never mind writing them down (pompous twit). But I fear that modesty (coupled with unrealistic perfectionism) created the problem in the first place. I have been too modest, too shy, too insecure, and, yes, too lazy, to formulate my ideas clearly and convey them forcefully.

And now I have decided that this must change. It’s time to stop grumbling about what’s wrong and to start trying to do something about it, quietly, starting with my own little corner.

So instead of my head being full of ideas for the blog, my head is full of ideas for work. And this is as it should be, as Mary Poppins says.

I don’t want to stop blogging. John Williams suggests I should “declare that you are only going to write when you feel it is absolutely necessary to speak out against something?” That sounds about right. I do so declare. Although I will still be writing about the silly, little things as well. This said, I will probably start writing with a vengeance, now. Isn't that always the way? (I see Allison is thinking the same thing). So don't give up on me just yet.

There. Now I feel so much better, to have got that out.

To start I have volunteered for an irregular night shift tonight (Friday night, missing the opening ceremony) and have made a mental note that I will not grumble, complain or think any bad thoughts about it, even though I hate night shifts.