The Fear

5 Apr

My coworkers and I call it “The Fear,” with an ominous hushed tone and raised eyebrows for emphasis. The Fear is a sort of self-regulation, a respect for (and yes, slight fear of) authority figures and the power they hold over you. The Fear makes a productive worker. There’s a distinct line drawn in the sand between those that have The Fear and those Without. Those with the fear are prompt, courteous, hard workers who try very hard to do everything assigned to them to the fullest extent they can. Those Without… aren’t. Don’t. They meander, they wander and chit-chat. They take long breaks at inappropriately busy times. They don’t care that they’re doing it wrong, they don’t care that they’re adversely affecting everyone when they’re slacking off.

My distaste for those Without is drilling holes into my brain. I’ve begun keeping tabs on all those around me Without, what they’re doing or not doing, when they’re breaking, how much they’re ignoring job duties and how badly it’s affecting me and the others with The Fear. It fills me with more and more rage until I’m irritable and snappy and resentful and my muscles just ache with carrying the burden of my hate for them. It takes me at least a half an hour and about a thousand puppy cuddles to shake off my anger at them at the end of the day.

I know you’re not supposed to concern yourself with the business of others. You can’t control them, and it’s important to keep on your own path and do the best work you can. That doing well is its own reward. It’s painful to choke down your reward of doing well, though, when you’re busting ass and your reward is more work, and more assignments. While the people who are less trust worthy are “punished” with less responsibility. And you’re basically the same thing, same position, same salary. Sure, managers might like you more. But managers liking the people Without the fear less affects the people Without in no way. The same sort of correction that sends me shame spiraling makes them shrug their shoulders and move on. Usually without making the correction.

It’s not that I wish ill will on the Without. (Too much ill will anyway.) I would never wish for someone to lose their job or get in major trouble. I just yearn for a time when the difference between those with The Fear and those Without is something a bit more substantial than one group being decidedly less stressed than the other.

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2 Responses to “The Fear”

  1. soundhippy April 6, 2012 at 9:30 am #

    I completely understand where you’re coming from! My very first full-time job taught me that the “rewards” for taking initiative and being reliable were more responsibilities and more accountability. More work for the same pay as other employees who were lazy and spent most of their time socializing. It was frustrating and infuriating.

    • Cally April 6, 2012 at 4:32 pm #

      It’s probably the most discouraging the ever. Definitely makes me want to slack off, because why bother?

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