One of my co-workers has been a bit challenging. She is a smoker and of course, you can't smoke in the airport, so for her to take smoke breaks, she was padding her regular breaks, sometimes leaving her co-workers alone at the desk for nearly an hour at a time. She was finally called out on this, and as result we now have to clock out on our 15 minute breaks and our dinner breaks, which we didn't previous. She also spends a lot of time on the job, not being on the job. Checking her cell phone, texting etc. And eating. Once she had to cut down on cigarette breaks, she started going back and forth to the kitchen for food three or four times in a shift...and eating at the MSP desk, which is a big no-no.
As a food addict, I certainly related to the emotion eating...I've spent plenty of time binging at the Desk of Doom, but then while I was praying/meditating for serenity/compassion, it hit me with a vengeance...I WAS Julie at the Desk of Doom. I never smoked, but once the LJ/fandom/fanfic/ship-war addiction went into hyper-drive, I pretty much spent every minute at work trying to do as little work as possible, and just totally getting lost in the on-line crap.
On top of that, I was a total screw up. As a result, in fact. I was fucked-up/brain-fogged on sugar/gluten/grain and I was way more involved House/Torchwood/Alias/Heroes or whatever than in ANYTHING I was actually supposed to be doing. So naturally I screwed up. And whinged, whined, cried and prayed whenever the shit hit the fan. I also felt deeply, profoundly victimized when I told to stop being on-line all the time and actually do my job.
This is very much my co-worker. Every time there's an email instructing us to follow the rules, or she gets reprimanded, she is full of anger and resentment and excuses. The world is out to get her. This was totally me, and it's honestly taken me this long to realize that I was a really lousy employee.
And a lousy co-worker. Since my former co-worker walked out on me last May, I've dined off my pity party about him leaving me alone on a Friday afternoon and never coming back. Maybe he was just tired of my bullshit and having to cover for my sorry ass.
I had brunch yesterday with a previous former co-worker, who used to call me "Helen." This meant I was like Helen Keller in the scenes of The Miracle Worker, where she's flailing out in her angry blindness. She used to keep Jelly Bellys around to at least soothe my sugar crazies. I was really happy to be able to see her in clarity and apologize. I'm not up to my official amends yet, but when the opportunity arises, I at least try to get an apology and an admission of my wrongs out there.
So now I'm happier, I'm nearly 11 months since my last binge, I'm clean of sugar/gluten/grains/soy/dairy etc. I have a job I'm good at, that I love dearly, so everything is just hunky dory, right?
Not so fast, Louis.
When guests check into the Lounge, we give them a card with the Wifi code and a link to leave comments about the Lounge. So far, every month since we've opened, I've gotten at least one or two comments from people who liked me, thought I was a good ambassador for the brand, appreciated the assistance I gave them, or had something else nice to say about me.
And then there are the ones who have other opinions.
1. I'm loud. (My sponsor's reply to this is, "Of course you're loud; you're from New Jersey." True, but not terribly helpful.)
2. I'm rude.
3. I talk too much.
4. I badmouth the airlines. (One in particular.)
5. I embarrass people when I'm telling them they don't have Lounge access.
and the one that really hurts and made me want to throw up (or binge...or both) when my Team Leader told me.
6. I'm sloppy.
OUCH! Now, we all know that everyone on the interwebs has an opinion and that people can be cruel and if someone is looking for a reason to hate on me anyway, then a wrinkle in my collar or a hair out of place is the angle they can use.
BUT...this is an old, painful thing for me. I wasn't terrible neat and well dressed for school when I was a kid and irate Card Members have nothing on children and teenagers for deliberate cruelty. So this brought up a shitload of pain and resentment and fear and self-loathing and anger and defensiveness.
My Team Leader reiterated that she thinks I'm great, that people do love me, that my job is not in danger etc. However, we still need to address the issues. From the last batch of comments, I've already started working on my voice, my tone, my style etc. Now I really need to start addressing the sloppiness issue and make sure there are no wrinkles or out of place hairs to be found.
It's an opportunity to improve myself.
And it still hurts like holy hell. (But I didn't binge over it.)