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Old 03-14-2019, 03:26 PM
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Re: Off Topic - Work Vent

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Quote: Originally Posted by charmedbyekkie View Post
I did go for a second round recently and was given tentative greenlight, depending on how they were restructuring the company. I'm supposed to hear back from them by the beginning of next month whether or not they'll hire for the role.

I've got my resume out and circling with recruiter friends. I've been applying to jobs, often when I have a bit of a mental breakdown and take sick leave. In this country, I do have to have an employer to enable me to legally stay here - freelancing as a foreigner is illegal, I'm not supposed to have any side jobs. So I'm just biding my time until either I get an offer at the beginning of next month or another company offers.

So stressful though because I know the boss never gives a good recommendation. Ever. I've seen a lot of people go. Not one received a positive recommendation. And he blatantly tells people that he didn't give so-and-so a good recommendation because [citing all the negative things he can attribute to the person]. It's scary. People try to leave on a positive note like you're supposed to when you leave a job. But it's just a facade from him.

It makes me want to move back. But I've (figuratively) built a home in this country.
They tell you not to take side jobs and ETC and put road blocks. You sometimes have to get around the rules to get ahead. Just be careful who you tell and ETC. I can tell you a few friends including a doctor that over stayed, broke the rules and did side jobs and ETC made a name for themselves and eventually once stable fixed legal issues and did it correctly applied and now a citizen. You have to think outside the box, don't put road blocks before getting started. As you stated racism and xenophobia were on the rise worldwide. You have to work around the limitations so be it.

The person you likely work for likely did way worst and likely didn't follow the rules. Just be smart, plan and get ahead and don't take everything for word for word. Learn to use the system to your advantage and play the game.

Last edited by ParrotGenie; 03-14-2019 at 03:33 PM.
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  #12 (permalink)  
Old 03-14-2019, 03:31 PM
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Re: Off Topic - Work Vent

If your boss never gives anyone a good recommendation.... other people in the field will know!
So no way they will hold it against you.
(One of the advantages: in the small pond you are looking in for another job others will have heard about him a long, long time ago - so they know his validation of people and his opnions are worthless.)


I understand you cannot 'show weakness' and that is terrible.
No-one should be treated like that, but yes...exploiting people without options is as old as the world and will probably last as long as well


So just make sure you have / get some options.
I am glad you still have a lot of fight in you
Burned out does not mean you are worthless or spend or even "no good anymore", it simply means they have not been taking good care of you at work and you need to replenish your energy.
.

Last edited by ChristaNL; 03-14-2019 at 05:09 PM. Reason: horrible spellink
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  #13 (permalink)  
Old 03-14-2019, 03:35 PM
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Re: Off Topic - Work Vent

Quote: Originally Posted by ChristaNL View Post
If you boss never gives anyone a good recommendation.... other people in the field will know!
So no way they will hold it against you.
(One of the advantages: in the small pond you are looking in for another job others will have heard about him a long, long time ago - so they know his validation of people and his opnions are worthless.)


I understand you cannot 'show weakness' and that is terrible.
No-one should be treated like that, but yes...exploiting people without options is as old as the world and will probably last as long as well


So just make sure you have / get some options.
I am glad you still have a lot of fight in you
Burned out does not mean you are worthless of spend or even "no good anymore", it simply means they have not been taking good care of you at work and you need to replenish your energy.
Yes exactly.
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Old 03-15-2019, 12:45 PM
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Some thoughts on working in a high-pressure environment in the Lion City..

Bit of a long-read from me here, but I want to convey some modicum of comfort, because from what you wrote I can tell that your sheer frustration is palpable, as is the extent of your deep despondency over your work(-life) situation, Charmed. I'm gonna make some assumptions and write from the heart, and reference some heavy topics with good cause - and hope that it all does some good to alleviate your present level of misery, and bring about a much-needed lift to your temporarily-flagging spirit. So..:


First things first - above all else, please take things at one at a time and don't "project" too much into the future (if x doesn't happen, then y won't happen, then bad-thing-z will definitely happen). One-at-a-time. Don't emotionally invest yourself in your workplace or colleagues (any more), it's not healthy and actively hurting your mental and physical state of being. While that's an easy thing to say, it's much harder in actual practice because we're all humans, and humans are wired to crave three things:

  1. the feeling of solidarity or intimacy that comes from a sense of belonging to a large social grouping,
  2. validation of our innate self-worth, and, separate from that,
  3. recognition (or at least, acknowledgement of) our contributions.

These are separate but inter-related concepts, and most of us grow up learning that we should strive to "earn" or receive these things from others - especially those growing up with Asian upbringings (like myself, although I'm American-born with an Indo-Carribbean background, and my parents didn't go crazy AFA embodying those negative parental stereotypes). Asian cultures famously seem to be always engaged in a contest for title "most over-achievinng/over-worked", especially at that certain echelon of the social strata - the middle rungs where hard work can indeed boost your prospects through life; but, there's also something integrally bounding the level of success most regular people can reasonably achieve, that a lot of people growing up on this myth-making easily miss, ignore, or don't want to think about - and that is, just like in so many other parts of the world, it's not just what you know, but who you know.

Now, it's clear from what you've vented that you worked really hard at this place, and seemingly poured yourself into sustaining its "flow" (project completion) in ways both large and small, and, unjustly, have not received any of the three things I listed. No sense of belonging, no respect for your innate self-worth, no acknowledgement or recognition of the long hours you put in getting things done. Certainly nothing forthcoming on the part of your boss, who sounds like a thoroughly pleasant person. Reminds me of my first corporate job as an assistance financial comptroller for a large garment manufacturing outfit - they supplied a big-box NA retailer with all its child-clothing lines, essentially, and had me working often til 10 pm, midnite, and the last straw was getting home at 4am. To say nothing of seeing the actual conditions on the factory floor in places like Honduras and San Salvador. I couldn't support a place like that, couldn't work for it, and so I left.

Singapore, which has (perceived) low levels of corruption, heavily stresses meritocracy as a means of societal advancement, values education, and is essentially W.E.I.R.D in every way, is also unfortunately deeply possessed of certain "mercenary" qualities of a stereotypical capitalist-acquisitive-oriented Asian mindset, without, say, the counterbalancing qualities of shared communal care (Nordic, as an example). One thing which that terrible CRA movie inadvertently got right, while ironically lauding those lifestyles (which was NOT the point of the book!)..anyway, which against the backdrop of being an over-populated island nation, leaves you with:
  • competition that is incredibly cut-throat,
  • office-peons under the strain of massive workloads that can kill (see karōshi). Singpore is no exception to this phenomenon, which affects youngsters, millenials, middle-aged adults, and seniors alike. (Also to say nothing of the abuses poor, under-educated migrant workers in Singapore face, as well, lest this read like something only the "office" classes face)
  • everyone feeling ultimately like an expendable cog, once used up, forgotten and easily replaced..
And that all sounds really hideously depressing, right? But as a matter of the only thing we can truly ever be in control of in this world, as a matter of our deliberate mindset, it does not have to be, Charmed.

I live New York City, here it's pretty much the same deal (probably a bit worse over at the End-Island owing to under-developed social programs, but still) and the local rat-race most everyone who isn't extremely wealthy gets born into by default can and will destroy your mind - if you let it. There's SO many people trying to take your place, by nature of this place. So few jobs. Unsteady pay. Random muggings and burglaries (both have happened to me), medical emergencies... automation destroying jobs, rents spiraling up forever, affordable areas destroyed for more and more playgrounds for the ultra-wealthy...it all mentally wears you WAY down, and some people, without any proper coping mechanisms, they end up fleeing... or worse (see second bullet point above).

Now, the ones who remain, they'll tell you they toughed it out, but that's a story we tell ourselves that shows we let our pride get the better of us. It's easy to pat ourselves on the back, saying "Well, we were the ones who truly had the determination and GRIT to survive here - the rest, they were all soft and weak". That's a story I can tell others, but it wouldn't be entirely true - my parents' choices mattered, but so did a lot of luck, chance, good fortune, what have you. Simply being here at the right time and place before others.

All of this is to say -- you do have a choice in how you approach this time of crisis. Don't let the circumstances you can't control lock you into a hopeless point-of-view. I won't diminish your outlook by saying the situation is not bad, or that things will get better. Truthfully, nobody really ever knows. The Buddhists embrace change as the only constant, and non-attachment. I'm not into that fully, but it is certainly helpful when you're feeling tossed about by the slings and arrows of the world. There's a good mental technique, I've used often, which is to envision the very worst that can happen, and then prepare yourself for it, and then - put it out of your mind. If NYC ever became so fantastically un-affordable, as much as I am deeply rooted and attached to my house and hood- well, I'd have to leave. And get another job. And bring my birds and partner with me, if possible. All things are possible, and it's a potentiality I'd certainly to avoid, but that's a bridge you cross when you get it (or it drops on you).

I left that "good" corporate job because it was burning me out. So I never got a "good" resume, one that was burnished with ever-advancing job experience. Not sticking with that role likely changed the entire trajectory of my career and life, probably for the worse in the financial-salary sense. Instead, I ended up bouncing around between many gopher jobs doing accounting, inventory, office-admin grunt work, etc - for next to nothing, and with ungrateful bosses to boot, all of this with an MBA! I was keenly aware of my college colleagues making career advancements that, as the years yawned by, I could never hope to make up. It created worry and anxiety. But now, I don't think anymore about how much I could be earning - now I work at a non-profit where I earn far less than I could have, but the hours work for me and I derive the value in the positive things around me that I can. And I realized, that I can never be sustained by an external source of solidarity, of recognition, of validation - sooner or later, it'll change, run out, whatever. The hard work is nourishing yourself of those things from yourself. Hard to do when you are stressed, despondent, depressed, I know. But entirely possible. (PT II below!)
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Old 03-15-2019, 12:46 PM
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Re: Off Topic - Work Vent

But, you think, there's nothing positive about my work-life situation right now, at all, everything is uncertain, tenuous, and in potential jeopardy. This is where the sage advice from the other forum-members is invaluable: there are always "hidden positives" we often miss in the constellation of people, places, and things that make up our lives. If you have social connections, past or present - reach out and renew them. If you have professional contacts, put out your feelers and see what is going on in similar fields or industries. Communicate your feelings to the support group you have around you - the friends you may have made and met on your walks with Cairo, your Significant Other, any family you may have abroad. Don't be afraid of not receiving validation, or of receiving criticism for the choices you've made, or having your concerns lightly or superficially dismissed.

All of this is to say, that there is an ultimate positive outcome to all of this, even if you can't see the path clearly from Here to There right now. As others have said, start to plan your escape, thoughtfully, carefully, and deliberately. And then, take things just one at a time. Maintain proper perspective, and ground yourself in the small and good things in the background of your life that you may be missing for all the looming negatives taking up oxygen and screaming for your attention in the foreground. Your mindset is determined by how you choose to view the world, and nothing can shake that fortress when you make it an unassailable redoubt against the world, strengthened by self-confidence and introspection.

From all your posts that I've read, Charmed you come across as diligent, intelligent and compassionate. And those three attributes will always take you towards happiness in life, just sometimes across longer timelines than we'd like. Feel free to PM me if you want to vent, or talk, or whatever. It's great seeing your posts and following the joys and tribulations from the adorable adventures you & Cairo share, and I want to see you make it through the other side of this dark-cloud you're feeling your way through.



And I know you will.
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Old 03-16-2019, 12:39 AM
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Re: Off Topic - Work Vent

Charmed, I am so sorry to know you try to thrive in a no-win situation with sociopath/psychopath as boss. Wish I had advice, but I never worked in a cutthroat corporate environment and thus did not develop appropriate coping skills. Best suggestion is to compartmentalize as possible and make time for the small pleasures in life. Know that everything in life is temporary.
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