When worlds collide

“Is it ignorance or apathy? Hey, I don’t know and I don’t care.” –Jimmy Buffett

I don’t want this post to turn in to a rant.  That’s not how I want this blog to be and that’s certainly not the message I’m trying to get across.  However, it would seem that each step I take to try and move my train to the other track so-to-speak is being pushed back on with an opposite and equal force. The way I see it, there are two possible ways for one to transition a career into something more fulfilling; slow and controlled, or cold turkey-fueled chaos.

The slow and controlled method, while preferred, doesn’t seem to be working.

I’m torn between being thankful that I have a good job in this economy, and getting aggravated that my workload keeps increasing, projects keep getting bigger, I’m getting drawn in more, and my free time keeps getting shorter.  My apathy is growing exponentially.  This is bad.

As I sit and work at my desk, I look up out of the window of my home office and often think of how my work life has changed.  I went from sitting on a stool at a light table in a government building (with no windows):

…to sitting in a cubicle in another government building (no windows):

This wasn’t so bad.  I worked with good people and got to take the occasional flight over the state to check out projects.  I even once spotted this corn field shortly after 9/11 that I took a photo of and it ended up in the newspaper. (I also ate a greasy cheese steak when we landed for lunch which would haunt me on the flight back.)  Needless to say, I spent a good long time after we landed cleaning out the interior of a Cessna.  The point here being, that I got out of the office a bit and my day was STRICTLY 8-4:30 every day.

From there it was on to the private sector and my own office complete with windows and plants and a real wrap around desk!  And of course more responsibility.

This brings me to today.  Now my home is my office.  Technically my extra bedroom is my office, but at least it has a window! (and a mess)

My desk is filled with too many computers and too much dust.  Not pictured:  the rest of the electrical equipment in the room that is raising the room temperature by a good 10 degrees and is almost certainly going to give me cancer. (Seriously, I don’t need to heat that room in the winter.)

The point to all this is that in 12 years all I’ve really done is upgrade chairs and increase my workload. (Right about now, you’re going to scroll back up and check out my chairs – told you.)  I’ve also managed to fully immerse my work world with my home world now working from home.  This is compounded by the fact that I have calls with people around the globe, so my typical 9 hour day is extended because I have to conduct a conference call with someone in Australia at midnight.

Awesome.

As much as I need to change this, I am very uncertain about the economic future of this country (different subject altogether) and that affects my drive to change the status quot just as much as my need to  not sit at a desk with 5 screens wearing down my vision – figuratively and literally.

Now days, when I look out my window, I see the inevitable collision of “uncertainty”, “happiness”, “success”, “frustration”, and “time”.

What happens when an unstoppable force meets an immovable object?

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