[Sober Living] Least Worst Job

I’ve found good things about every job, gig, or whatever I’ve ever had. Whether my colleagues made the bosses tolerable, the location allowed some fun exploration, or the work was satisfying enough, when my mind flashes visions of the stairwell at this company or the workbench of that company, I always feel a melancholy nostalgia until I remember the rest of that job and how this one’s worst is better than some gig’s best days.

“Most days are better than some.”

That’s been my sobriety motto for a few years now. Up until this recent, hopefully, long-term patch of stability, those “most” days were seldom and those “some” days were numerous. I had a rough day at work a few days ago. The pressure was on and no matter how receptive we are to criticism, no matter how fair the advice is and no matter how little of our egos are invested in going that way any further, it’s difficult to change course.

Still, even that day was nice… comparatively.

About one year ago, a recruiter negotiated with me for leaving my current gig to go to his for a dollar less per hour. His main financial offer was a bus pass. I did the math. For the amount I paid per week in bus fares, it would be a pay cut to accept the new gig with the bus card. Sometimes, I wonder what would have happened had I accepted that offer.

What if I’d stayed at other places?

Since the inception of this website, I’ve been on the professional move, leaving a steady job with increasing pressure where I was ostracized from social groups and had my career planned out for me by people other than myself. I gained some self-confidence over my years of contract work. Now that I’m full-time again, it feels good, in part because I’m in a job where career development is encouraged and an active source of conversation.

“What department do you want to go into?[1]”

“Well, I’ve been pigeonholed as a troubleshooter, but I really want to do more writing. Something like technical writing or even something in marketing…[2]” When I’ve worked elsewhere, there was no chance for that sort of development into the people we wanted to be, rather, we had to work in the shadows if we wanted to advance… anywhere.

So it will take time.

However, that just means I’ll have to iron out more of my own personality issues I’ve developed over the years. I need a thicker skin. I need to accept harsher criticism faster. I need to leave work at my desk and not bring the mental luggage with me through life. I think I will find all those skills at my current job.

For one thing, I haven’t been writing these essays as frequently.

I haven’t needed to vent as much lately. The work still has pressure. People’s personalities perturb peace. Yet there’s less of that.

If it’s only one bad day a month, outstanding!

Quotes: [1,2] Someone asked me about my ambitions. His response was a subtle surprise. This interaction was at the center of a discussion about how much more strict the job had become and his lamentation over these changes.
Sources: My personal and professional experiences.
Inspirations: I’ve said this phrase a few times now and have noticed that it’s a slow-burner so I wanted to capture my thoughts related to it. Even at some of my more worse jobs, there have been some good things about them, I suppose.
Related: Other Sober Living essays.
Photo: It took me a few days to figure out what I wanted for this essay’s visual element. As I was looking through my photos, I found this one I took on my lunch break somewhere on some job at some time. This was on a lunch break on probably my most worst job, unrepressed memories-wise.
Written On: July 29th [21 minutes, mobile]
Last Edited: July 29th [First draft; final draft for the Internet.]
My big goal is to write. My important goal is to write "The Story." My proudest moment is the most recent time I overcame a fear, which should have been today. I'm a better zombie than I was yesterday. Let's strive to be better everyday. (Avatar)