This week I was asked to think about whether my place of work is really the place for me. If whether I see myself being there given my aspirations, zeal and desires for growth and the possibility that that might not happen in the environment that I am in. How crazy is that?
I have come to realise that starting a new job is difficult. The difficulty did not start on the first day of employment. It actually begins the moment you decide that you need to leave your current place of employment, because if you are leaving from a place of unhappiness, you now have to decide whether the new place is worth exploring without knowing whether you will be better or worse off. Of course if you were not employed before the difficulty is different. From a place of unemployment you have to consider whether you will be making the right decision or not and all that it comes with.
I think ultimately our decisions are based on survival. Survival of our financial wellbeing. Survival of our mental wellbeing. Survival of our personal and professional growth desires. Survival of our time and effort. Survival of everything that we are. It seems to be a difficult thing to get all of that at once, because survival comes with a huge amount of opportunity cost – and thats the economics teacher in me speaking. Just in case, opportunity cost is the cost of the forgone opportunity for choosing something else.
Part of being on survival is based on your work environment and who you have to deal with on a daily basis. People really do make or break your experience of a job, new or 10 years in. Which is why when I go for an interview, one of my questions to interviewers is, how open are you to new ideas as well as how much support can you offer me here? I have always said, as much as I am the one being interviewed, the employer is being interviewed as well by the interviewee. It is kind of unfortunate when they do not live up to your expectations, and that is not to say that they are too high, just a hope that they can meet you half way.
Everyday feels like a new battle of something. Other days it is a continued battle from a week ago. I cannot help but think how things would have been at a different place or had my start of year not been as chaotic and shaky as it was and somehow continues to be. And if I feel this way, then I know that my learners feel it thrice as much as they continue to beg me not to leave. Reminds me of myself when I was in high school, I used to beg my grade 10 to 12 teachers to not leave before I matriculated. I would say “we either leave together or I leave first.” I understand now, they were being strong for me, for all of us at the expense of a part of their survival. How beautiful is that?!
I have so many aspirations, dreams and desires. A lot of them are feeling hindered by my survival mode. That is not the type of employee experience that I want to live. So I am hopeful for my future and trying to stay strong for those that I teach, because ultimately, my path to impact affects them and trying to make a better future for them.
Thank you for reading! Much love and appreciation from one teacher to teachers everywhere.
(no recording today, sorry)