Thanks, Mom and Dad. Thanks for instilling that post-industrial, all American sense of hard work and ethics. Every weekday morning, as I sprint, heart racing, through my morning routine of exercise, shower and prep to look presentable, get the kid up, quick, get breakfast made for two, feed the dog, huff huff, pack both lunches, get makeup on, race to the schoolbus, walk the dog, jump in the car, and pray that it’s no later then 8:40am… I bow to the gods of guilt and timeliness that you taught me to worship. Because I’m due at work at 9am, and it is, of course, very, very important to get there on time.
Or is it? I’ve spent my whole life doing the hard-working thing, doing right by the company, getting to work on time. It used to be easy. But now I’m in the thick of life’s real work, and I’ve got a kid, and a house, and a whole heck of a lot of responsibility. And the stress of getting to work on time is killing me. It’s not infrequent that I’ve busted my nut to get there, but I still walk in somewhere between 9:11 and 9:30. And I kick myself, and swear I’ll get it right tomorrow.
Screw that. I’m done. As of now, I’m giving myself a pass. It takes what it takes, and I will get there when I can.
I’m not saying it’s not important to be on time for work – I expect it of my staff. But after more than 30 years at this game, I’ve earned some rights: assurance that my value is not measured in hours, awareness of my own high productivity, and the confidence that my work speaks for itself.
This week, I’m shooting for 9:13.
If you don’t have to punch a clock at work and you often find yourself late, take a hard look at your morning routine. If after tweaking it as much as possible you find you still can’t get there on time, figure out a reasonable arrival time and make that your goal. Talk to your boss if you need to, chances are she or he will understand.
Tags: forty, forty-plus, middle aged women, over forty, women, women over 40, women over 50, women over forty, work