NaBloPoMo Day 6: Working hard or hardly working?

6 Dec

How hard do you think you work?

wurkkitteh

Although I can rattle off the number of my billable hours completed this year with precision, I find it hard to judge whether I create an impression of diligence or laziness.  My work ethic is the most important career-related value to me.  The biggest compliment I could receive is to be thanked for working hard.  One of my biggest fears at work is that I am afraid of being perceived as lazy or not holding up my share of the work.
My attention (bordering at times of paranoia) on this quality has apparently kept me focused and working hard enough that in my annual review, my highest marks were in the “work ethic” category.  But high marks does not mean I can rest easy.  Only because I’ve been so determined to be, and to be known as, hardworking have I established that reputation for myself.

I probably work harder than lots of people, but there are also lots of people who work harder than me.  Sometimes I think that I can only consider myself hardworking if I work harder than everyone else, like that I can’t think of myself as hardworking at all when there are other people who have it tougher, and are piecing together back-to-back blue collar shifts, 7 days a week, and barely making ends meet.  Or that I can’t consider myself hardworking because I have managed to fit that hard work to my life, for example by leaving work at a reasonable hour but doing work once the baby is in bed, instead of staying in the office until late late at night.

But being “hardworking” isn’t a contest.  There is no limit on the number of people who can be “hardworking.”  And just because someone’s workload is comparatively harder than someone else’s, does not mean that the person with the lesser workload is not “hardworking.”  Comparing gets me nowhere.  I just have to keep at it, keep my hours up, get my work done, and hope that people recognize my efforts.

Advertisements

One Response to “NaBloPoMo Day 6: Working hard or hardly working?”

  1. Viki December 7, 2012 at 12:30 pm #

    Medical School helped me realize there would always be smarter, harder working people than me. And I thought that wasn’t possible until I got there… probably a good lesson to learn at some point! After accepting that, I’ve managed to be a lot happier about what I do and can do given my lifestyle choices. Chin up!

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: