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Don’t break your back

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There’s always the question in the back of my head that constantly keeps pestering me and asking: what would you do if you could quit your job today? 

What would I do…I’d likely sleep in the next day and then start planning a car trip across these United States for Matt and I to embark on. I’d then sell a bunch of our stuff – maybe even our condo-like townhouse, and use the money to buy this. We’d visit places we’ve never seen and see friends and family. I would take pictures and we’d each keep a journal. Maybe make it all into a book one day.

I can dream.

What you may have gathered from this is that I’m not one to aspire up the business ladder and become CEO or top manager of a fancy schmancy company. I’m no Jeff Bezos mainly because I value my personal and family life a lot more than I do bleeding my soul dry at the office.

You may have also read the numerous stories out there about how Amazon treats its employees – not just the white collar ones, but those in the warehouses are worse off. It leads me to one conclusion (quite a simple one): corporations and some organizations (not just Amazon) will break the backs of their workers for the bottom line. That bottom line is money.

Some may offer “perks” such as comfy, cozy working spaces, free food, games, and maybe just maybe benefits (health insurance, parental leave). But rarely do I come across a place that respects a person’s personal life and time off. Drawing that line between work and home seems to have become elusive in the American working world. And dare I say it has become an illness.

It is literally making people ill from stress, poor physical health from sitting at the computer all day staring endlessly at a screen, and can cause mental health breakdowns. This isn’t ok.

I should note though, that I do not currently work at such a place and I am really thankful for that.

Since the economy tanked in 2007-2008, jobs were hard to come by and many of us would take on whatever work was available to pay the bills and literally be able to stay afloat. This, I think, has provided employers of large corporations (maybe even some small businesses as well) an excuse to tack on the hours and work of their employees and squeeze as much out of them as humanly possible. Many have even become used to it because it’s the “American way.”

I’m personally not buying into it. Work is work. At the end of the day, we are not saving anyone’s life at this immediate moment – unless you are a doctor – and that line between work and our personal lives needs to be drawn. In fact, I think a large, thick, unbreakable wall needs to be built.

Where is the respect for the American worker? Or did it ever exist to begin with?

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8 Comments Post a comment
  1. How did I know that link was for an Airstream before I even clicked on it?? LOL.

    I don’t think a thick enough line is drawn between work and life in many countries and smartphones has exacerbated the sad situation. Luckily, I also work in a place that has a pretty solid line and I have good work-life satisfaction, probably great.

    August 19, 2015
    • Marie #

      Ha! Yeah I do like those Airstreams. 🙂

      That is really good that you have that good work-life balance. It’s definitely a necessity.

      August 19, 2015
  2. Very much agree with this sentiment. I’m lucky enough to enjoy my job. I’m even luckier to have a boss who thinks the same as me in terms of work being work, and clocking off at 5pm is mandatory, not optional. Having worked at places where you’re given the stink eye if you dare leave on time, it’s not something I would ever want to go back to. Hell, if you can’t get your job done in your working hours, I kinda think there’s something wrong there!

    I’ve heard this sort of work “ethic” being called the “American Way” and it makes me so sad. And angry. That it’s so of the norm that people have just accepted it rather than try to change it.

    August 19, 2015
    • Marie #

      It is quite sad that some have just accepted and I think others shrug their shoulders and know there really isn’t much they can do about it.

      August 20, 2015
      • Things need to change in America BIG TIME before it’s too late.

        August 20, 2015
        • Marie #

          Unfortunately I just don’t think it will.

          August 21, 2015
  3. I think I’d try to find a way to ensure I’d never have to find another job again. Not likely though.

    August 20, 2015
    • Marie #

      I hear you, I wish I could do that. But it’s definitely not possible. Not with the way the working world has changed (i.e., needing to jump jobs to get a proper raise, projects closing out, business that go under,etc.).

      August 21, 2015

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