Work Life And The Struggles Of Today

Work changes due to funding issues have ended me up in another department with clients who are going through the motion and have little or no interest in recovery.  They just want to stay out of more trouble with the law.   They are compliant but show up in body and often not at all in mind or heart.  Leaving old destructive patterns behind takes a full commitment. 

My work is now much less satisfying and more draining.  I am really glad it is Friday and I have two days off coming up to re-energize.   I was thinking today I have been working in the human services mostly for local government agencies or non-profits for much of my career.   I have moved around a lot geographically and job wise to keep myself learning, to avoid burnout and to keep life interesting.  I have worked in Portland OR, Vancouver BC, San Francisco and Santa Barbara CA, Denver and Boulder CO.  I have been a counselor, a management consultant, a teacher, a trainer, critical incident expert, a supervisor, a training coordinator, a contract manager, volunteer coordinator, manager of a drop-in center, Employee Assistance professional, and private practitioner.  Each job I learned from, most I enjoyed, all seemed to provide me an opportunity to make a difference and each job brought me together with other professionals who I enjoyed working with and having as friends.  

Work has been a positive experience but doing a job to make money has its limits.  I find myself tired today of all the rules, all the right ways and wrong ways of doing what others pay me to do.  I think about how much energy is taken up jumping through hoops, satisfy funding sources, and putting up with the endless mind numbing paperwork and I think there must be a better way?  

As I get older I have more thoughts about my future.  I have nothing to show for my work as far as investments, stocks, retirement plans because I don’t stay long enough to get vested.  I have to keep growing and changing in order to remain mentally and emotionally healthy enough to do the work.   This makes the future uncertain and that uncertainty weighs heavier these days.  I know I have made a positive difference for others but I seem to have fallen short in taking care of myself financially.  I have always trusted that things would work out and I would be provided for by some kind of karmic payback for devoting my career towards helping others.   Now doubt is creeping in to my thoughts.  

Just in the last day or so, I realized that my own strong support for healthcare reform comes from my feelings of vulnerability.  I fear for my own future in tough economic times because I know if given a chance those on the political Right would eliminate the social safety net of Social Security and Medicare claiming privatization is better and eventually tax cutting their way out of these programs.  Greed seems to be a much more powerful force than compassion these days especially in our nation’s capital. This feeling vulnerable is not that much fun.  

What concerns you these days?  How can we turn things around toward more compassion and prosperity for all?  What changes do you want to make to enrich your life? 

For an inspired dose of hope checkout this blog post.