It’s OK to step down – Dog Abby
My wife was promoted to a managerial position 6 months ago. I was so excited for her, as I knew it would give her a chance to shine. The fact that it would bring in extra money was an added bonus. Six months later, she is tired and disillusioned. She has been working 10 hour days, often going over a week without a day off. The owners have been piling on so much work that when she does take time off, she is still worried about her unfinished work. As a result, she never truly has time off to recharge, and it is affecting her health. And let’s not even talk about the team she supervises!
Abby, she is not the kind of person to step down from a job. She feels it would be a failure on her part if she did. But I know how miserable she is, and want to tell her that I think she should go back to her previous position or find work elsewhere. The extra money is no longer worth it. How do I approach this?
Concerned in Connecticut
As I have often said, I like to play in the park next to our home. Recently I was chasing a ball, and I ran from the grass to a rocky area, and broke one of my claws really bad. I was unable to walk properly for a while and I certainly could not run! Mom slowly nursed my paw back to health and I am as good as new, but it took quite a while to get that way.
While I was getting better, I had a chance to relax and enjoy other things. I still got belly rubs and songs sung to me by my dad, I still got to cuddle my kitties Max and Phrytzie, and I still got fed good dog food and doggie bones when mom or dad came back after being away.
If I did not take the time off to get better, I would not have been able to take mom on walks this week or play with my kitties like before. Sometimes, in order to help others, you have to help yourself.
Daddy says work is important, but not as important as health. If you are not healthy, you aren’t going to be able to do things as well for yourself, your family, or your job. Maybe your wife can talk to her bosses and explain that the work load is more than she can handle, and ask them for help. If that’s not possible, tell her that it is important to give time and energy to other things in her life, especially the things that she enjoys. Offer to help her find other work, or simply tell her that it really is okay to go back to what she was doing before. My mom likes to sing the song “Accentuate the Positive.” I think that would be a good idea when discussing this, too.
Mom added that in her book, The Sniper’s Guide to Leadership, she discusses the importance of delegating. I do not know what that means, but it might have something to do with how Max would yell at mom if she forgot to give us our come-home treats. Usually I meet mom and dad at the door, but since I was not able to walk for a while, Max did it for me. It gave me the time I needed to get better and Max was more than happy to have such an important job. Maybe your wife could do this delegating thing with parts of her team so that she can focus on the more important things.
When your wife realizes that you are really looking out for her, I think she will do the right thing. Good luck!