Thursday, January 08, 2009

Are you happy at work?

These days, I don't wake up for work with especial dread. Yes, there are days when I'd much prefer to stay in bed 'cos the day looks like it's going to be a long, draining one, but at least now I can step forth knowing I'll actually be missed if I wasn't there. That's stronger motivation than just having to show up at work because the consequences for absenteesm are dire.

My job itself is anything but boring and routine. There are so many opportunities to try on different hats apart from being the elbow-patched drone at the chalk whyteboard. For example, there is such a diversity of CCAs on campus that when we get deployed to look after different activities from time to time, we can't help but pick up new skills along the way. After all, we have to at least look like we know what we're doing if we want our kids to trust that we know what we're doing.

For me, I've had the opportunity to play theatre (and movie!) director and producer, I had to learn from scratch to be a hard-nosed news publisher, and even though I was terrible at debates I still learned to appreciate a good argument. And all that from just being involved in CCAs alone.

Every new hat unlocks new areas of creativity for me to dabble in. Occasionally I amaze myself when some ideas work -- "Admiral" was the one best example of this happening -- though most of the time when I make a mess of things it was because the learning curve was steeper than I had anticipated. But I still gained from the experience, or the attempt anyway.

So the job's ok, I guess. Can't really complain. But to say I like my work would also be to say I like the people I work with. It's really rare to find such a combination of friends among my colleagues with whom we share more than work. We are all very good at what we do, but at the same time, we don't take ourselves too seriously either. We spend time hangin' out with each other, just as much as we have formal meetings planning strategy, curriculum, pedagogy and other concepts represented by big words. But our most important meetings are breakfast and lunch talking about, uh, less consequential things.

Are you happy with your job? You may be good at what you do, no doubt, but if you want to know how happy you are at work, one effective indicator is to see who you go to lunch with.

As it turns out, my lunch partners seem to be dwindling in number somewhat... it's going to be an interesting year.

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