How to last another 3 yrs at my job? Advice?

Hacking employment, improving work, professional development
bigato
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Re: How to last another 3 yrs at my job? Advice?

Post by bigato »

So you mention professors names and studies on swr made on USA but you are going to retire to a developing country. You know this is pure bullshit, right? But just so that you know, Tyler's studies are way more compreehensive, there's no comparison. And if you actually care about the numbers, you should do the same kind of study with data from the country you are going to retire in, or at the very least, countries which past and present has same resemblance to yours. You could also possibly give up believing in the FI/SWR gospel altogether and start embracing uncertainty, complexity and diversity of inflows/income/skills. Will you be prepared for the world to behave like Japan in the last 30 years? You will not with 3 nor 2% wr. Open your mind.

steveo73
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Re: How to last another 3 yrs at my job? Advice?

Post by steveo73 »

ertyu wrote:
Tue Dec 03, 2019 4:03 am
OK so @steveo if you're right, I'm father away from goal than I thought. If I target expenses with wiggle margin, I'm currently at 5,35% and will be at 5% flat by the next performance review cull in 6 months.

Even if no one can tell the future, I would still go with the conditional probablility estimate. I trust it more. I might be forced by circumstances to pull the plug at 5%, but I can't say I'd feel anywhere close to safe at those numbers. As I said before, everyone should know their own risk tolerance and plan accordingly. Mine just happens to be higher than yours.
Honestly I think this is a better way to view the financial situation. None of us can predict the future. It's all about risk mitigation but you need to be careful here. There is no point in fooling yourself thinking that getting to 3% is somehow inherently safe especially if you are on minimal expenses. There is heaps of risk in that plan.

Honestly I don't think my risk tolerance is higher than yours. I reckon with my back-up plans I'll be 100% safe.

One point that you should also take into account is that you can influence how content or happy you are within your life right now and you do have options. You just need to think on that as well. No one here can make those decisions for you. Quit work now. Work less. Suck it up and think about the situation rationally in that you are building for a better future.

I have a good job but I'm fucken sick of it. I'm sick of going every day (and I work from home 1 day a week and take sick days). I'm sick of having to play games to get better bonuses or pay rises. I'm sick of having to fight against bullshit. I just don't like work. To be fair I've also been working all year and have holidays coming up so I've just had enough and I'll be better after my holiday. I do get where you are coming from. You are single. I have 3 kids and 2 teenagers.

ertyu
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Re: How to last another 3 yrs at my job? Advice?

Post by ertyu »

steveo73 wrote:
Tue Dec 03, 2019 5:56 am

I have a good job but I'm fucken sick of it. I'm sick of going every day (and I work from home 1 day a week and take sick days). I'm sick of having to play games to get better bonuses or pay rises. I'm sick of having to fight against bullshit. I just don't like work. To be fair I've also been working all year and have holidays coming up so I've just had enough and I'll be better after my holiday. I do get where you are coming from. You are single. I have 3 kids and 2 teenagers.
I hear you and I'll keep my fingers crossed that everything works out well for you, and soon.

I also agree that simply having accumulated a certain amount isn't a guarantee. It's enough to look at what has happened around the world just in the past ten years. For example, people in Greece were hit with a huge wealth tax to bail their country out. People in Venezuela got hit by a hyperinflation. The US, China, and the EU are each brewing up their own credit market mess. I am well aware you cannot take anything for granted. One goal at a time, though. Once a lump of savings is out of the way, I can pull the plug on my working life in Current Country and see about settling down into the next phase. I assume I will pick up skills as I need them in my new life. I am not opposed to ever learning anything new or diversifying income streams or what have you, just, one goal at a time.

Lucky C
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Re: How to last another 3 yrs at my job? Advice?

Post by Lucky C »

I think it's important to think of your job as a symbiotic relationship rather than a battle of you vs. some soulless corporation. People who see work as an antagonistic relationship try to take shortcuts / get the most pay for the least amount of effort. They do things like save sick days for nice spring days to go golfing, or artificially lower productivity during the week so they have to come in for some weekend overtime pay, or they do whatever it takes to make themselves look better than other team members. Most managers see through that and those are the people that get laid off.

If you're in a symbiotic relationship you have to act selflessly and give what you can to the relationship. Make your boss look good. Make your team members look good and be sure to relay their good work to management. Think about how you can do your job better, more efficiently, with fewer mistakes. Make helpful suggestions (not complaints) about how the process or work environment can be improved. Help organize a holiday potluck, etc.

At first this may seem phony or a waste of time if you are putting in more effort to get the same pay (why should you toil just to increase some CEO's bonus?), but I'm not talking about doubling your hours or adding backbreaking chores. I'm talking about things that will not just make you more appreciated and cut your chance of being fired close to 0%, but will give you significantly more satisfaction in your work.

I'm basing this on my very real experience. I spent most of my career trying to be under the radar, just a quiet cog in the machine. Only having to do a few hours of real work and spending the rest of the day chatting with a friend or surfing the web. This is easy but leads to low satisfaction and a fear that you may be cut during the next downturn. It wasn't until the end of my career that it clicked. What is best for the team or company is often best for me as well. For example, a team member slacking is an opportunity for me to help and learn something new as well as be the MVP of the team. In one particular instance I picked up what an older colleague was slacking on (and did not utter a single complaint), got some satisfaction from improving my skills, and got a nice bonus that year while the slacker got fired. Although the slacker was putting in less effort to get the same salary (or better salary than me since he was more senior), he was certainly not happier than me or the other employees.

Even though I wasn't really close friends with any colleagues, I got great satisfaction when they were pleased with the quality of my work. It became automatic to just work on what was most important for the project and ignore any possibility of slacking - and ignore others who are not putting in their fair share. Again I must emphasize that in time this did not require much more effort than my old slacking ways, and resulted in mainly good stress with much lower bad stress (no more fear of failure).

An avid runner and a couch potato may feel equally tired at the end of the day, but the runner is tired for better reasons and will be in a better mood. Being a good worker is like exercising regularly; it requires significant effort to get a routine going, but it will soon become automatic, and it's simply the right thing to do.

Riggerjack
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Re: How to last another 3 yrs at my job? Advice?

Post by Riggerjack »

@OP

Your thinking seems to have very defined patterns, that limit your options.

Those options all seem to lead back to you toughing out 3 more years.

I'm going to assume all of your reasons are valid, and 3 more years of high earnings is the most efficient way to get your stash, and your stash will hold you over for the rest of your life, whatever the markets do.

So let's just look at the path you have chosen. 3 more years, of a job you hate, living the life you described in your initial post. If everything goes well.

Or, you get fired, or the economy tanks, or something else goes wrong. Your 3 year plan dies, for whatever reason.

Where are you then? Wrong country, no ties, and 20x savings.

What would you do? Find another job to hate in the wrong country? Find something else to do entirely? Or just take a vacation through the ugly times, and pick up after the hard times pass?

Take a minute to think about it. There are all those options out there, and many others. You probably haven't considered them, because they were so far outside of your planned path.

Now consider a business. You have no appreciate skills, or desire. You understand that it is risky, and everything you have written screams risk aversion. But I don't think you have given it enough thought.

What is the risk of a business? That it will lose money and fail. But there are all kinds of businesses. Some hardly make any money at all, and never will. I'm thinking about a guy in Ego's journal who loved mountain climbing, so he got a bunch of used climbing equipment, and started a rental business close to the mountains.

What risks does that guy face? What risks do you face? Are those risks correlated?

A business doesn't have to make a pile of money. But it can really help with risk management. And you have the resources to start thinking about this today. Even if you never follow up, it will be a different thought pattern, that may help you through the day at the office.

Stacking cash, hoping that "enough" will be safe, when you understand the risks to capital, is a very inefficient strategy. You can always find another risk, making the required stash just a little bit bigger. Just One More Year...

steveo73
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Re: How to last another 3 yrs at my job? Advice?

Post by steveo73 »

ertyu wrote:
Tue Dec 03, 2019 6:13 am
I also agree that simply having accumulated a certain amount isn't a guarantee. It's enough to look at what has happened around the world just in the past ten years. For example, people in Greece were hit with a huge wealth tax to bail their country out. People in Venezuela got hit by a hyperinflation. The US, China, and the EU are each brewing up their own credit market mess. I am well aware you cannot take anything for granted.
You can mitigate against these risks though by using the broadest possible index funds. A world tracker straight away minimizes specific country and specific stock risk.

Sure things can go wrong but don't expose yourself to more risk than you need to be exposed too.

Augustus
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Re: How to last another 3 yrs at my job? Advice?

Post by Augustus »

It seems like your biggest problem is you, or rather the habits you've fallen into. Everyone suffers a bit of the same weariness when it comes to work. You're laser focused on it though. You may want to look at non judging meditation exercises. I've been falling into the same pit lately, really dreading work, always worried. You're trying to tell yourself that the solution to all your problems is hitting a certain SWR, and then everything will be good. It's just not true though, in all likelihood your negative outlook will continue, but fixate on other issues, and you'll still be miserable and anxious. I'm sitting on a nice pile of FU money, took some time off, I actually became MORE depressed because I had so much more time to worry about things and nothing to distract me from it.

Health is the foundation of your wealth. If you're not taking care of that then you have nothing. Health comes before accumulation, because accumulation is useless without health. The only thing I think I HAVE to do each day is get in 30 minutes of vigorous exercise.

One other thing to realize, is that you never know when your time is up or what the future holds. The future in your head doesn't exist, all the things you're imagining, are just little neuron structures in your brain, they aren't real, mostly they're poorly informed opinions. The present moment is all you've got. Balance is important. Work a bit for the future each day, but if you're not enjoying each day then frankly you're wasting your life. No one has any clear idea of what the future holds, in 1900 at the height of the empires no one foresaw europe being ruined by WW1, in 1920 after WW1 when europe was in ruins and especially germany, no one saw germany conquering most of europe in WW2, in 1940 when germany controlled most of europe and russia was in tatters no one saw the cold war coming, in 1960 when the US was ascendant no one saw that the US would be defeated in vietnam, in 1980 no one saw the collapse of the soviet union coming. We can't see with any clarity even 10 years from now, thus it's really important to enjoy each day, because our predictive powers plainly suck. For all we know a plague or a famine is going to wipe us out 3 years from now and your FU money will be useless.

In your shoes, I'd start with forcing yourself to exercise a minimum of 30 minutes each morning before work or at lunch, that'll take a lot of the edge off. It's not optional, and if you don't want to just tell yourself that means you have to. I'd also be trying to find anything that would let you work a normal 8 hours, 11 hrs a day 5 days a week is akin to a living death, you're not working for a living at that point, because you aren't living. If you're still miserable after that then I'd look more seriously at quitting, 20x expenses is great, semiRE isn't a bad option if you're happy. After taking several months off I've realized that with my personality I want to work, just not so much. Once I hit my financial goals I plan to enjoy working for peanuts in a half assed way doing something I find more enjoyable. Working for peanuts gives me flexibility on SWR, and is more stable since I'm not reliant on a single source of passive income.

steveo73
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Re: How to last another 3 yrs at my job? Advice?

Post by steveo73 »

Another thing I was thinking about was can you try and improve your overall life next year for instance. Sometimes just looking to make big improvements can help you remain positive.

It could be as simple as for instance learning to play guitar or doing jiu-jitsu. I do both of these activities so I mention them but you could do anything. I also read a lot of books. You could set yourself a target for the year and track it on goodreads. I aimed for 50 books this year and I'm past 60.

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Lillailler
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Re-framing

Post by Lillailler »

I have a lot of sympathy with the OP. My framing of the issue is that you have taken a rational decision to work at an uncongenial job for the next three years in order to secure your ERE, but the irrational/ unconscious parts of your mind/body system are not fully aligned with your decision, and are creating difficulties.

I also sympathise with the view that advice to let go of your rational decision, change job, defer your ERE, lower your SWR etc is not helpful.

I have met other people who have been in a similar position and to me it’s quite normal to accept short-term pain and tedium and the rest in order to gain long-term security, joy, opportunity, etc.

One guy worked in a job he really hated where he had big retirement benefits falling due at age 55 (I think) and he was age 54. On his work PC he had a counter set so that every time he logged-on it showed him how far he was away from his retirement date in months, days, hours, minutes and seconds. His co-workers were a mixture of admiring and appalled (I was a project worker, not staff, so I had no opinion). One morning we were all summoned to a management ra-ra where we sat in chairs for a couple of hours while we were told things that were either obvious to all of us, or completely irrelevant to our work. Going back to our office I whinged to him about the waste of time and distraction from our task we had just had imposed on us. He beckoned me over to his PC, and showed me that the counter had moved 2 hr 10 mins closer to retirement while we at the meeting, without him having to do any work yet that day! A new respect was born.

I once had a job where I had to do, from time to time a mind-killingly simple task on the production line for a few hours at a time. It was "pick up thing from Box A, plug into socket, hold down green button, write down reading on meter, let go green button, unplug thing, put in Box B". Repeat 200, 500 whatever times. I would look at my watch from time to time and then do some mental arithmetic. "It’s 4m22s since I last looked at my watch, which is 262 seconds so that I have earned weekly wages times 262 divided by 60 times 60 times 40 which is xyz. That could buy me z cigarettes, or w volume of beer". After thinking about that for a bit, I would look at my watch again and start over.

Both of these are about deliberately forcing the goal into the forefront. It is possible that affirmations would be effective at this also. "My most significant task today is to get one day closer to ERE"

Another possibility is to give the irrational/ unconscious parts of your mind/body system something else to work on. My personal choice has been training in combat sport. The physical exertion and the feeling of danger in sparring - even with gloves etc, getting punched in the face is a physical shock your body wants to avoid - made me better able to cope with crappy stuff at work.

PS I share your scepticism about precise projections of SWR.

ertyu
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Re: How to last another 3 yrs at my job? Advice?

Post by ertyu »

Riggerjack wrote:
Tue Dec 03, 2019 9:55 am
@OP
you get fired, or the economy tanks, or something else goes wrong. Your 3 year plan dies, for whatever reason.

What would you do?
I keep a plane ticket + USD1k cash emergency fund at all times in case that indeed comes to pass. I have considered it because it's a very real possibility. As a foreigner, I am by nature a temp worker. If "the economy" comes to shit, I'm the first one out. Because I am currently so far away from a savings target I feel comfortable with, I will look for another job in the same industry, but will likely need to accept a pay cut. If circumstances are such that another job is not available, I will return to my country of origin, rent a cheap studio or attick room, and regroup. I will probably not look for a job in my home country. I will probably take the time to rethink and acquire skills. After the economy improves, if at all possible, I will try to get another job until i reach a savings target i am comfortable with. If the economy does not improve, I will probably look for a job in my home country which will pay peanuts and probably make me just as miserable, but would not carry with it a threat to survival.

Of course, I recognize that I can change my mind at any point.
Riggerjack wrote:
Tue Dec 03, 2019 9:55 am
@OP

Now consider a business.

What risks does that guy face? What risks do you face? Are those risks correlated?
Actually, if things do get bad enough, the risks a business faces are very much correlated with the risk an employee faces. Both my business and the business of any potential employers of mine would depend for survival on people spending. Having lived through an actual economic crisis that lasted multiple years, I can tell you small businesses do face a lot of risks. When there is widespread unemployment and people scrimp for food and bills, they don't tend to spend on gas to travel or on rented climbing gear. The really uncorrelated option is subsistence farming. People I knew with relatives in the countryside had much better food security because people doubled down on producing their own food, some of which they gave to relatives in the city. Of course your plot would better be somewhere people know you and like you. When people are hungry, they are way more likely to try to pick other people's produce in the middle of the night so they can try and sell it for cash.
Augustus wrote:
Tue Dec 03, 2019 2:53 pm
It seems like your biggest problem is you, or rather the habits you've fallen into. Everyone suffers a bit of the same weariness when it comes to work. You're laser focused on it though. You may want to look at non judging meditation exercises. I've been falling into the same pit lately, really dreading work, always worried. You're trying to tell yourself that the solution to all your problems is hitting a certain SWR, and then everything will be good. It's just not true though, in all likelihood your negative outlook will continue, but fixate on other issues, and you'll still be miserable and anxious. I'm sitting on a nice pile of FU money, took some time off, I actually became MORE depressed because I had so much more time to worry about things and nothing to distract me from it.
You're actually confirming my point. If you're right, all the better to address how I manage my emotions with regards to my job. Are there any meditation exercises you do that have worked particularly well for you?
steveo73 wrote:
Tue Dec 03, 2019 6:07 pm
Another thing I was thinking about was can you try and improve your overall life next year for instance. Sometimes just looking to make big improvements can help you remain positive.
and
Lillailler wrote:
Wed Dec 04, 2019 1:51 am


deliberately forcing the goal into the forefront. It is possible that affirmations would be effective at this also. "My most significant task today is to get one day closer to ERE"
I agree with both of you. Eyes on the prize, with goals framed in terms of, "I'm preparing for quit day."

@Lillailler, thank you for the understanding. The affirmations sound like a great idea, and so does the reframing of current experiences. What it does is, it takes you out of the moment and redirects you away from the present suck and onto something you can look forward to. I'll re-read your post, lots of great thoughts there.

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Ego
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Re: How to last another 3 yrs at my job? Advice?

Post by Ego »

I wouldn't presume to offer any advice for that kind of workload. Those are brutally long days, especially if you are doing something you are not passionate about.

On the plus side, you have not resorted to the typical drinking, drugging or other harmful self-inflicted pain relief methods. You are saving a phenomenal rate. You are smart. And you are obviously resourceful as you found a way to legally work in place where you can earn a good wage.

Acquiring all of the certifications and documentation to obtain permission to work in another country is no small feat. That must have taken a great deal of self-motivated drive and determination.

Is the job killing that side of you?

If so, are there any co-workers who are dealing better with the long hours? Why? How? What are they doing differently? Is there any way to emulate them?

ertyu
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Re: How to last another 3 yrs at my job? Advice?

Post by ertyu »

Ego wrote:
Wed Dec 04, 2019 10:02 pm

Acquiring all of the certifications and documentation to obtain permission to work in another country is no small feat.
Hadn't consciously thought about this but thanks for pointing it out: it's true that is a large sunk cost which is impacting my thinking. Having done it once, I am not very eager to give up the results or repeat the process. It's one factor that makes me reluctant to change. The standard argument that clinging on to sunk costs is irrational obviously applies.
Ego wrote:
Wed Dec 04, 2019 10:02 pm

If so, are there any co-workers who are dealing better with the long hours? Why? How? What are they doing differently? Is there any way to emulate them?
The colleagues appear not to hate the job as much. But now that I think about the situation of the other foreign hires, they're holding on because they're unwilling to give up on some sort of carrot or other. A couple of people have shared they hope to be transferred to a branch of the company in a more desirable location, so they want to work hard to make themselves look eligible for promotion (Spoiler: it won't work. The company would not move an employee who appears to perform well in hellhole central when people aren't exactly jumping over each other to work here [see long hours, etc]. But you don't rain on other people's parade.)

A number of people are like me, hoping to bank on savings. My salary is good, but I suspect I am on the lower end for the company. Americans and people with shinier citizenships than mine are probably making better money.

Then there's a couple of people who are reluctant to displace families, etc. E.g. kid is in Good School A and we are waiting for them to graduate etc.

In general, when I look around, I don't really see thriving. I see the standard workaholic/let's perform corporate cheer and say the correct party line thing while looking half-dead thing.

There's the crowd that deals by blowing cash: trips at every opportunity, bars and restaurants as often as possible, a bunch of female colleagues appear to regularly go to massages and spa where whatever there treatment makes their skin look so good etcetera.

The tl;dr is, I don't think that I'm that exceptional in feeling a general sense of overworked malaise.

EdithKeeler
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Re: How to last another 3 yrs at my job? Advice?

Post by EdithKeeler »

I could have written your original post when I was 38.

Except for they money part. I hadn’t been smart enough to save much.

Flash forward to age 55, and I’m still sort of in the same boat, except for the money part, because I finally got smart.

What I can tell you, in my role as your future self, is that life is short and goes by pretty fucking fast. Staying in a job you hate is not worth the extra $200 a month or whatever it works out to be on your future SWR.

You can’t buy back the lost mental and physical health, lost friendships, etc., nor the regrets your future self might feel (“Damn, I should have just quit that job and worked at a Starbucks/wherever for a year. I can see now I would have been much happier.”) I know this, because looking back on what I thought were intractable problems (“no one will hire me! The only thing I can do is insurance work! There are no jobs in my city!”), I realize now that those were minor, inconvenient obstacles.

Stay or go. Your decision. It looks like, as I read your responses, you know what you need to do.


Kylinne
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Re: How to last another 3 yrs at my job? Advice?

Post by Kylinne »

Um. Other than the part about being a foreign worker from a second world country and single, you've pretty much described my current life - I'm 38 and planning 2-3 more years unless I get fired which is not an unlikely option. I'm away from home 10-11 hours a day as well, imposter syndrome is rampant, and I keep getting threats from my bosses because I'm constantly late to work - and also don't think I can work in another industry (or, honestly, any other job, because I'm specialized where I'm at). Also underpaid, also don't want to quit, also assume every other job would suck as bad as this one - because I really hate answering to anyone else. The job burnout is real, yo.

I have been where you are before, and gotten myself out of it. I am currently *back* in that "everything is shitty and I don't want to do anything mindset" and also needing to dig myself out of that hole, so this is also a good reminder to myself. Paying to outsource the shit parts of your life is definitely a good option sometimes, too, even if it screws up your savings rate, and there may be ways to offset costs.

I haven't figured as much on how to deal with the job sucking part. I have been working on the life sucking part, and these are some of the things I have done:
1. I don't immediately go to the couch/bed when I get home. Sometimes I don't even let myself go home. I do whatever I need to do - like dealing with the laundry on the couch first, or cooking dinner + leftovers for the next day, while I'm still upright, or driving directly to the gym or grocery store, or dinner with a friend. If I do make it to the couch/bed, I try and set a timer/time limit and sometimes and alarm to drag my ass back up to deal with whatever I don't actually want to do. I will also give myself a time limit of doing things I hate - if I need to clean up my room and I really don't want to, I tell myself I only need to do it for 5 or 15 minutes and then I can go back to bed. Usually if I'm up, I'll stay up, and sometimes I go back to my phone or a good book exactly 5 minutes later.
2. I have a housecleaner. Worth the money. She's been in my life longer than most of my friends and all of my romantic partners. I should probably pay her more.
3. Having a trainer with scheduled appointments was a *really* good idea for a while. I would be more annoyed at myself for missing the appointment and paying the money anyway than being at the gym, and no matter what kind of shit mood I was in or how late I was to the appt., the workout plus my trainer's sense of humor made me feel better after. ….I should probably schedule with him again, tbh, since I've been falling out of my gym habit again.
4. I know you didn't like therapy and don't want meds. There are more types of therapy than just talk therapy, though - art therapy, CBT, animal therapy, group therapy: something else might work better than traditional therapy. Making friends can also be a form of therapy, and means you have crash space if you decide to come back to visit the country you're currently in later on.
5. Rock climbing (pick a sport) rather than going to a traditional gym - it was more fun. Motivation was still a problem, but I'd put my stuff in the car and drive there directly after work and not let myself go home first. Same with the regular gym - also, I'd occasionally go at lunch if I could pull it off. If you can spend 7-10 minutes with one of the quick workout apps in the morning before you leave for work, that can also help - think stretches and yoga poses and planking.
6. Schedule doctor's or dentist's appointments and take some extra time before/after to decompress or get some errands done, then complain about how long the wait was at the doctor's office to coworkers. (May work better in the US.)
7. Walking at lunch/on break.
8. If it's not in the car, have a backpack by the front door so I can walk to the gym immediately upon getting home.
9. I do all or almost all of my bills and planning stuff at work on company time.
10. Music and noise cancelling headphones are the only way I actually get anything done at work and the only way I avoid screaming at my overly loud and overly talkative coworkers. You'd think engineers would be quieter...
11. Anything where you have to commit yourself to a time/date, like a scheduled class or a group activity. For me, this especially applies if I paid money for it, because I may not be motivated to go but I sure as fuck don't want to waste the money I spent on it.
12. If you don't want to eat/cook healthy when you get home, some options: 1. make someone else do it for you for a while - buy a salad or a cooked veggie bowl or whatever works for you, either on your way home or delivered, 2. move your eating so that you're eating more at breakfast/lunch so you're not trying to cook dinner at home when you're already tired, and either you won't be hungry when you get home or you can just have a snack instead of a full meal. 3. Have something prepped for dinner like you do for lunch, that can just be thrown on the stove or in the oven/microwave, or is cooking in a slow cooker or sous vide.
13. Cooking/meal prepping/grocery shopping at lunch can work if you have a grocery nearby. Can also be combined with a walk - walk to store, buy lunch/dinner ingredients, and then wash and chop things in the break room at work. Or like I did for lunch yesterday, I had all the stuff for a salad but hadn't had time to make a salad and didn't want to actually prep and eat a salad at work, so I just ate a thing of tomatoes and carrots and cheese and glared at the lettuce and threw it back in the fridge for … some other time.
14. Quit sugar. Maybe not 100% of the time for you, but don't make having a cake or soda or a pastry or whatever a daily thing. I make sure to have water by my side constantly (we have a drinking fountain with a water bottle filler), and I always keep some 95% and/or 100% chocolate at my desk for afternoon cravings so I don't chase down candy (which is ubiquitous in the office) if I'm hungry, or protein snack - cheese or salami or nuts or jerky or something, or a piece of fruit if I really want something sweet - which I usually do by like 2/3PM.
15. Books - the library is my friend, because I check out a book and have to return it by set time, which means I have a motivation to read it by then. I try and alternate a chapter with a phone game if I'm having a hard time focusing on reading, like I have been lately.
16. Life gamification apps can help motivate you to do things. Mine right now is Level Up Life, but there are bunch, and I like being able to check off boxes and level up, so I end up doing things like drinking more water or going for a walk when I might not otherwise because, hey, I get points for this. It can also be a way to pick up a new hobby - like taking a picture every day for a month, or drawing something every day for a week, or listening to a new band.
17. Someone else pointed out the "do one small thing on a project at work" - I do that and usually end up being able to finish the project once I can start. I no longer get email notifications during the day, which probably isn't great from a work perspective, but helps my focus a bunch - until someone IMs me or comes and taps on my shoulder to ask why I haven't responded to their email.
18. Don't try and change multiple things at once and expect them to stick when you're this burned out.
ertyu wrote:
Sat Nov 30, 2019 6:51 am
I have a hard time with my job. Tough dragging myself out of bed, dread going every day, feel incompetent and disrespected, 11 hours later back home , crash on couch, repeat. I have no life outside of my job, and do not want a life outside of my job because of how tired I am all the time. I do not feel able to expend energy and effort on yet another thing.

I get by with the minimal self-care possible. Success looks like being vertical, not being late to work, lasting the day, and dragging myself back home.

At this point, most people who hear this go, "dude! just quit and find a new job!" Here is why to me this is not an option: I am fairly entrenched in my profession and have few other skills. Whatever other job in the same industry will suck the same (tried changing jobs a couple of times). I am not willing to change industries because I don't want to leave a job where I have reached my maximum earnings potential to just drop three-four rungs down the ladder and hate it anyway, this time with 15 rather than 3 years to DDay.

That said, I might get fired anyway: I find myself constantly paranoid.

Therapy and meds: unwilling to pursue. Talk therapy did not help the last 2 times I tried, and I refuse to take medication. The therapy/meds situation is not up for debate. I have felt crap enough for long enough to have researched and decided against. Please no, "dude! get over yourself and just do it! my grandmother swears by prozac!"

Things I know will help that I have been unable to make myself do: eat well and exercise. Brain perceives this as work and effort, and after Job, it refuses. Pretty strong cravings for crap food that are hard to resist after a hard day, and pretty strong aversion to exercise--it's the overcoming of that resistance that is a problem and feels like torture. Again: here people would go, "dude, just hit the gym!" What I can say is, you've either been there and you know what this is like, or you haven't. If I could make myself hit the gym, I'd have done it already. I bought a kettlebell and a mat and they just sit in the corner. Mat leaning judgmentally.
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All I want is to stop working.
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Hoping for any advice around how to make work feel less exhausting. It's hard to struggle with the intense feeling of avoidance every day and make myself go anyway. I mostly deal with the feeling of my life passing me by by numbing myself out. Being exhausted on the couch and staring in space has that covered. I am particularly looking for tiny incremental changes I can make to hopefully gradually lift off, and in what order to make them. There are probably tons of people here which felt the intense struggle against the resistance to the job, the desire to avoid it. How do you deal with this resistance. The job sucks and my life sucks, but at least I have a chance of getting out in another couple of years if I do not get fired over how the avoidance is impacting my performance. I have to grind it out anyway. Who has struggled with the same avoidance/resistance and what did you do to be able to just do your time until you can quit.

ertyu
Posts: 342
Joined: Sun Nov 13, 2016 2:31 am

Re: How to last another 3 yrs at my job? Advice?

Post by ertyu »

Kylinne wrote:
Tue Feb 04, 2020 9:20 pm
Um. Other than the part about being a foreign worker from a second world country and single, you've pretty much described my current life - I'm 38 and planning 2-3 more years unless I get fired which is not an unlikely option. I'm away from home 10-11 hours a day as well, imposter syndrome is rampant, and I keep getting threats from my bosses because I'm constantly late to work - and also don't think I can work in another industry (or, honestly, any other job, because I'm specialized where I'm at). Also underpaid, also don't want to quit, also assume every other job would suck as bad as this one - because I really hate answering to anyone else. The job burnout is real, yo.
Amen. Out @ 40 club? Thanks for the advice man, you stay strong, too. We'll weather this.

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