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05 January 2007 @ 12:47 am
Boredom  

I wonder if day-shift folk find it easier to cope with times when there's nothing to do. I mean, even though I've adjusted myself pretty well to these hours, I still feel like dozing off; I'll bet that's less of a problem during the day. On the other hand, there's probably more pressure to appear busy during the day, and I've always hated that. I suppose around about 3:30 or 4:00 am, when I'm really getting used to the situation, some hot job will come in and I'll have to figure out a way to crank it up and help get the job out the door. *sigh*

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Teslatesla_aldrich on January 5th, 2007 07:00 am (UTC)
I don't think I would recognize "nothing to do" if it walked up and bit me in the kneecap. I honestly can't remember the last time that I wasn't overwhelmed at work.

The fact of always having many more things to do than one can possibly accomplish really alters one's sense of urgency.
Fred A Levy Haskell: Fredcritter eyes onlyfredcritter on January 5th, 2007 08:32 am (UTC)
You're lucky indeed. I'd much rather be overwhelmed than bored at work. But it turns out that the financial printing business gets very, very, very (very) busy around SEC filing deadlines (particularly during the spring when there is the congruence of both quarterly and annual deadlines) and very, very quiet around this time of year. Yes, it is true that now that I'm doing a Production Support job instead of just normal, ordinary typesetter type stuff there are some manuals and version release notes I could be reading up on and investigating, but there are some times it's just too unfocused out to do that. As far as the "usual" work for one in my position … well, I haven't had a support phone call in two days now, and jobs to typeset (with which I help out when not busy troubleshooting or supporting production) have been few, far-between, and quickly completed by our crack crew. But I guess one must take the bad with the good. All things considered I do like this job, it suits my talents and temperament (except when it's screechingly slow), I do it well, and I derive a modicum of satisfaction from it.
Peter Hentgesjbru on January 5th, 2007 10:02 am (UTC)
I had a period like that during my day job this summer. It was a bit easier for me to cope, I think, because I could do things like take a long lunch and have a couple of pints at Kieran's in the middle of the day. That put the rest of the boring afternoon in a better perspective.
Fred A Levy Haskell: Fredcritter eyes onlyfredcritter on January 8th, 2007 11:10 am (UTC)
Ah, Kieran's. Nice. (Although for me, being buzzed and bored is actually worse than straight boredom. Obviously YMMV.)
Strawberry Snatchcake: Wonder Boobs!rampion on January 5th, 2007 02:30 pm (UTC)
In the training department of your fine (ahem) company, there is never down time. But that doesn't mean I don't feel like dozing off occasionally (and by occasionally, I mean "daily"). In fact, yesterday, I found myself staring at some screen on my computer for who-knows-how-long, with my eyes closed. I think the problem is, financial printing itself is boring. Now, if we worked for a company that printed something entertaining and varied like "Weekly World News"-style tabloid articles (you know, "Bat Boy Found in Cave" and the like) or, better yet, sex advice columns/"true" stories, I think I might be able to stay awake. (I've always wished to write for something like one of those -- how fun would that job be?!)
Fred A Levy Haskell: Fredcritter with camerafredcritter on January 8th, 2007 11:35 am (UTC)

I imagine that you weren't nearly as inclined to feel dozy at work before you had Leif running you ragged at home. I do understand about training folks never having any down-time—always some new release comin' down the pike that needs to be documented and for which training materials must be prepared, if naught else.

What? "…financial printing itself is boring." Whatwhatwhatwhat? What could possibly be more fascinating than financial documents?

Oh. I see. Tabloid articles. Sex advice columns and "true" stories. I guess I'll have to concede that to you. Come to think of it, there isn't a lot out there that's less interesting than financial documents…

"…how fun would that job be?!" Hmmm. I don't know if they're exactly equivalent, but I have a number of friends who've ground out pornographic books (to earn a living while they were honing their ability to write science fiction) and at least one who's been an editor for a publisher of such (she now works for a more mainstream type publisher). They tell me that it pretty quickly gets to be, *shrug*—you know, a job.

Miss Behaviourkevelyn63 on January 5th, 2007 02:33 pm (UTC)
Best. Icon. EVER.

Whether working days or nights, sometimes it's just the fact that there isn't much going on to combat the overwhelming desire to be anywhere else than at work, where you are not in control of your time or privacy. I mean, you could probably go home and sit motionless staring at a wall and still feel much happier than at work.

Maybe it's the just-waning full moon, because I and others at work felt something like that today, too...
Fred A Levy Haskell: Fredcritter eyes onlyfredcritter on January 8th, 2007 11:45 am (UTC)

"Best. Icon. EVER."

*blush* Thank'ee, m'am…

You're right, of course, about at least part of the issue being control over one's own time and privacy. Can't exactly lay down and stretch out to read that book, and one must stay at least somewhat tensed to the possibility that some work could come in at any time. Combined with the guilt from not being able to find anything work-related to do. I guess it's not surprising that it's wearying.

A monstrous ramblingbibliofile on January 5th, 2007 03:00 pm (UTC)
No, it's not any better during the day. In retrospect, the urge to snooze, for me, signals that I'm very sleep deprived. I've even been known to go nap in my car at lunch.
Fred A Levy Haskell: Fredcritter eyes onlyfredcritter on January 8th, 2007 11:49 am (UTC)
Yeah, now that you mention it, I recall having similar problems during the day too. Although some of that was because I hadn't gone on depression meds yet. Like, you know, I was always in a state of not having had as much sleep as my body (or, rather, my chemically-imbalanced brain) was claiming it wanted/needed.
A monstrous ramblingbibliofile on January 8th, 2007 12:18 pm (UTC)
Yep, me too. One of the interesting changes on anti-depressants was an inability to short myself on sleep (that is, wake up before I had enough sleep).

I've also heard that mild sleep deprivation can boost one's mood temporarily.
mrsgalacticvoyeurmmagidow on January 6th, 2007 07:31 pm (UTC)
I get bored at work very easily. I cannot figger out what people do to their brains to make a 4 hour job last 8 hours. I spend a lot of time on the internet (mostly at Salon.com on TableTalk) or just play with my paintings in Photoshop. Then the sh*t usually hits the fan and I end up staying late. There is never a time when the work is nicely spread out over 40 hours.
Fred A Levy Haskell: Fredcritter eyes onlyfredcritter on January 8th, 2007 11:54 am (UTC)

"I cannot figger out what people do to their brains to make a 4 hour job last 8 hours.
<grin> Yeah, that's always been amazing to me as well. Not only that, but how they manage to have done it so poorly after having taken all that time…

"There is never a time when the work is nicely spread out over 40 hours."
Yeah, that is the problem, isn't it? I think that phenomenon is somewhat worse in the financial printing business than in many others, but it does seem rather endemic.