9 to 5 Pep Talk

9 to 5 Pep Talk

It really becomes a game of strategically managing your snacking and your email checking and your web browsing – working the 9-5. How many more minutes until the next 15 minute break? How can you break that up by taking a walk to the water fountain or by pretending to need to research a company on Facebook or just having a bite of your granola bar? Maybe you have to pee again. Before you know it, it’s lunch time. And that hour you can easily squeeze into 90 minutes if you have a site visit or a conference call or maybe you just sit in your car and cry for a few minutes and once you’ve hit that level of emotional vulnerability it’s no big deal at all to stretch your lunch because if someone asks you you can tell them that your dog died and they’ll feel like a prick and never bother you about lunch time again. The afternoon is a little trickier, because it tends to drag out quite a bit longer. That’s why you find it really important to have cheese and crackers and other snacks that can be rationed out over the course of a few hours. I think it’s safe to say that by 3:30 it’s cool to be streaming Hulu on your phone, with headphones of course, and you know, hammering away on a spreadsheet that you created just for this moment, one that is at least 40 pages and filled with algorithms that no one would understand and if they asked you’d just start talking about filters and the alphabetical organization of over 3,000 contacts that you’ve been working on for 6 months and they would be so ashamed that they don’t even know how to do the ‘=sum’ equation that they would leave and consider you to be a person that works so much harder than they do and that they resent you a little bit. Now it’s 5 and it’s time to leave. What a day.

Ok, so share that paragraph with your boss. Don’t tell him you wrote it but tell him/her it’s a near perfect description of your work day. And make a wager with her or him. Say that you are willing to make a bet – $100/employee you get to agree – that if you can restructure the work day for the next month according to the suggestions I’ve laid out, and be able to factor in Personal, Health, Creative, and Work objectives into each “work day,” that you GUARANTEE the company will not only be more productive, but more pleasant to be around.

Put it on the table. What do you have to lose? The work place is heading in this direction anyway. Tell your boss not to be last.

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