This Can’t Be Reality

Major disclaimer, first of all: I’m really lucky to have the job I have.

The post I’m about to write? Yeah, it doesn’t pertain to my job, because I’m very lucky, like I said. I have a job that allows me to work in an environment I enjoy–working with people, in a library, helping them find books and understand the resources available to them and helping them research. Granted, I’d love to work in a library that isn’t academic, so I can tell all of the patrons who come in about the latest book I’ve loved and they should read, too (and vice versa), but I do really love my job. I work with great people, I get to be extroverted yet also embrace my introvertedness, not to mention grow my supervisory skills and excel with my organizational skills. Sure, my hours are less than ideal and I’m barely making enough to scrape by, but I’m still lucky, for two main reasons.

One: I enjoy the job I do.
Two: I get to leave my job at my job.

I know some people where there is not the case. Where their workloads are so massive that they literally cannot fathom another option, aside from working overtime or working over the weekends, in order to complete everything they need to just to stay afloat, let alone get ahead of the game or make a little breathing room. Worse, they don’t enjoy their jobs. They are miserable while they are there, for one reason or another, yet they can’t even leave the job at the job, so they take that misery home.

And on and on and on the cycle goes.


For me, just as an outsider, this sucks because this is happening to some of the people who I love the most, yet I have no idea how to help them. I don’t have that experience, so I’m not sure what they are going through. For me, it’s easy to say, “Just leave it at work,” or “take a break every once in a while/take a day off/stop stressing.” Because that’s what I do. But I can’t truly understand what they are going through, so the advice I’d normally give doesn’t really apply.

But it’s frustrating as hell, to watch your loved ones get broken by stress and the weight of their responsibilities and never seem to have any reprieve…from their job. It can’t be worth that, yet we all have to survive financially, right? But there has to be some better way to balance it; to have a life outside of work, to be able to enjoy life and have more to it than just work.

Yet how do you find that balance, when you work a job like I described above? Again, not mine; trying to figure out how to help these loved ones when I’m not in a similar position. Advice would be appreciated.



About Nicole Evans

Nicole Evans is a writer of fantasy and science fiction. She is currently unpublished and is working fervently to get the "un" removed from that statement. With six books under her belt and more on the way, she loves to write about destined heroes who fail anyway, twisting classic tropes on their heads, animals who feel more like people and, hopefully, about characters and worlds for you to have an opinion about. She really can't wait for you to read these stories.  Considering she has run out of space for putting rejections letters up on her wall, Nicole now uses her spare time doing the typical things that nerds do: blogging, dying repeatedly during video games (which she believes is retribution for the characters' she's killed), wishing she was the character she is currently reading about and trying to fight off the real world by living in her own head, with varying degrees of success. Nicole has a degree in Creative Writing and a minor in Film and Media Studies, and works as an evening librarian assistant. View all posts by Nicole Evans

8 responses to “This Can’t Be Reality

  • Beth Wertz Sanmartin

    Don’t add your work email to your phone!! You’ll be too tempted to check it. If you have to have it, at least set it up so it doesn’t notify you when you get emails so you have the luxury of only checking it when you need/want to.

  • azpascoe

    ARGH this is a HARD one. When you’re in this position, it seems like you have no options at all: people say ‘set firm boundaries’, ‘take a break’, ‘don’t worry about it’, but you can sometimes feel like you’re being squashed like a bug and none of those options feel like realistic things you could enact in your professional life. But, at the end of the day, the painful and unfortunate truth is this: you either accept that it sucks and don’t seek change, resigning yourself to the situation… or you accept that change (whether it’s standing up to the boss and saying ‘those timelines are unrealistic and I need an extension’, or putting in for some leave, or deciding its finally time to look for a new job) is going to be really fucking hard but really fucking worth it. For the person on the outside supporting, all you can do is be there until the person in question realises that those are their options, and makes a decision. It’s a tough gig, but that’s my take 🙂 ❤

  • justbmoreblog

    My advice is of course the worst which is something my Dad told me: You spend way too much time at work so if you don’t like it find a new job.

    It’s the worst advice because I realize its not that easy for people to do, especially now that jobs seem so hard to come by. But in the end it’s true-it’s too much time to be miserable so you need to change it if it’s that bad.

    • Nicole Evans

      Right? It’s so easy to say, “Just change it if you don’t like it,” yet I’m not the one in the situation and I know if I was, I’d have plenty of excuses, too. Definitely wish it was an easier situation and not as common.

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