Sunday, December 14, 2008


Dec. 25 will mark the half-way point for this residency year. It is also the half-way marker for Justin's stint in the neuro department--which unlike most of the residents he actually likes. They all complain that the department is too slow, that they have to stay there even when their work is done. Justin, though, enjoys the pace because it is so much slower than the ortho department. There he never had enough time and was constantly running around. I think it helps that here he does not have to work with that woman who always came in late and shunned doing work--when everyone on the team is playing life is far more pleasant than when someone is complaining and not getting anything done.

Meanwhile, on Monday I will start working. Boundaries! Boundaries! Boundaries! I am determined to set healthy boundaries. This goal means that I will do only what is asked of me. I will not try to transform anyone or anything; I will just go to work every day and do my best job on what is asked of me. I know it seems limiting to set these boundaries "what is asked of me," but I have a history of going above and beyond the call of duty in a way that gets me into trouble. I become too emotionally invested in a project and then become too emotional when it doesn't go my way. I am determined not to allow that to happen this time.

This time, I will approach my work with a healthy attitude. I will not try to become the best friend of anyone that I work with. I will not be jealous of the relationships that others have with each other--by virtue of time they will be close to each other, by virtue of my own boundaries, my own healthy boundaries, I will be just another co-worker.

I know there are going to be very boring tasks--counting papers (literally), filling out forms by hand (literally--handwriting), calling people repetitively to share the same information--but I am going to approach them as new to each person that sees the form, that joins the organization, that hears the information. I do not think that means I will do everything with Pollyanna joy, just that I will do them knowing that they are my tasks, that the situation is what I make of it, that all of it is day to day and not permanent. By that I mean that whether I stay with the organization for years or leave after a shorter term, I will not always be an administrative assistant. For whatever the title is worth (not much, in such a small company), I will not always have it. I am trying to be careful not to call myself an administrative assistant or a secretary because I get stymied in the title. With a team of five, we all do some of the mundane tasks, and as the first line on phone calls I am more of a public relations assistant than a receptionist. I will be trained to talk to the callers, not to transfer the call to someone else. No matter what my title, and without my trying to get beyond the job as it is defined, I am part of the team.

That said, boundaries! Boundaries! Boundaries!

I will enjoy my drive each morning and evening. I will exercise before or after work. I will work with a good attitude. I will get to know my co-workers during our joint lunches, and I will be friendly but not overwhelming or overwhelmed.

Everything is going to be fine. It's just a new chapter in the life of ours; another mark to be noticed and surpassed.

1 comment:

Mikaela said...

boundaries are good :) congratulations on the job!!!