catling42: ([dean] and being caught in between)
This is where my thoughts were meandering the morning before I decided not to be stressed (still working on that, btw):

I'm feeling so frustrated lately. My body isn't cooperating. My moods are crap. My motivation is low. And that's with having my record-setting week last week, work wise -- 20 hours of massage, 14 clients. Massage therapy full time. And oh many did my arms hurt.

Lately I wonder if I should be trying to find other work. If I'd hate it. Yesterday, if maybe I could do both. In order to do 20 hours of massage, I need to be available for more than 30 because of time between and breaks and stuff. I wonder how much I should be trying to find other work, how much that undermines my biz. At the same time. I wonder if I shouldn't be putting all my efforts into getting ends to meet however I can, even if that means having fewer hours at my biz. But how can a biz be successful if I cut back? It's all so circular.

And there's the also the feeling of lack of free time, already pervasive with babysitting not even 10h/wk (though that's technically my obligation). I wonder if actual money were exchanged if that would feel less frustrating. Probably not, because the hours still suck and so does the communication. Also, some of that feeling of lack comes from never having a free evening to make plans with people.

And I'm at a weird point in my biz where I have too many clients to cut back a lot, but not enough to always fill my schedule. And then there's the piece where massage therapy full time doesn't seem to be enough to pay the bills and still have much fun. Or live the lifestyle I want, at least, or be comfortable when the support structures for low income are taken away, as is already happening.

I don't know if I have what it takes to basically start another biz, some sort of content creation internet based thing that could provide a more passive income with less physical, less 1-on-1 work, that I could do alongside massage. Maybe if I had an innovative idea, but I really don't. I guess in some ways, I do want a "regular" job, one with a more typical schedule, enough pay and maybe even benefits. It feels safer, anyhow. And has growth possibilities.

What is scariest is, I could get by on massage therapy full time if my body holds up, but there is absolutely no growth potential... can't work more hours, physically, and can't raise rates through the roof. *sigh*
catling42: (Default)
This morning is so quiet. Its the perfect temperature… no loud AC units, no fans on, no construction in the neighborhood or loud upstairs neighbors at this time, either. This is what I've needed, just being able to be quietly by myself. I've been so actively making new friends through work and running myself ragged that I really just haven't had time to myself when I actually wanted to be awake. Now I have a sniffle and a sore throat to show for all my running around and not sleeping, but also maybe some perspective.

Its taken me a while to realize this time around that I'm depressed and I need to do something about it. I've been conscientious about taking my meds, I've been trying to build exercise into my days, eating better and avoiding carbs and the blood sugar spikes that come with them, I even went tanning to try and jump-start my body into being upbeat. But what I actually needed to do was to admit to myself what is making me so unhappy in the first place. Now, some of those things are really pretty complicated and personal relationship-figuring sorts of things, but I also haven't wanted to admit that my job is making me miserable. Yes, I love doing massage. But my current workplace is not a healthy place. I can pretend, on days when I'm fairly busy with clients, that is all lovely and relaxing, but in truth it is a place of backstabbing and constant anxiety. And as someone with an anxiety disorder to begin with, worrying when I'm going to be taken into the office and yelled and sworn at for something that may or may not be even remotely true is not sitting well.

It has become clear. This job is simply not the solution I was looking for, and I kept holding it as the thing that would get me solvent. Quitting isn't giving up, it's moving on to a better situation. In reality, the spa has allowed me to get my feet wet. In the nearly four months I've been working there, I've built a strong repeat clientele (most of whom I will lose when I find a new job, but some I may give my last name so they can look me up) and proven to myself that yes, in fact, I do do a really good job. I am an awesome massage therapist. I have a ton still to learn, and this job kills my desire to learn and grow. All of my best hours are spent sitting around at work waiting for clients and not being allowed to do anything productive that doesn't relate to the spa (i.e. cleaning and laundry, and making sure to be seen on the cameras in the hallways often enough). I am an adult, and I need to work somewhere that treats me as an adult, respects my desire to work and excel at my work and doesn't feel the need to babysit me or spy on my every action. If I have a long stretch with no work and things are caught up, I should be allowed to go get coffee, to read a book, to use my down time constructively.

I'm also realizing things about how I work, and what my priorities in life actually are. I thought I wanted the security of all my work coming from one place that at first promised me benefits (though I changed my hours to be less unreasonable and then fell under the limit for actually getting those benefits), but now I'm beginning to once again see the potential in having a few different gigs on different set days. I mean, we'll see how it works out, but working as an independent contractor would give me a little more control over my schedule and my income than dealing with noncompetes and long hours of waiting.

So I guess I'm back at the point of applying for jobs. I must say, feeling so burnt out at my current workplace does not make me excited for going in this afternoon, and then long days for the next two days, especially feeling sniffly and sick with this cold that finally caught up to me. But in I will go, after lunch, and put on a good face and do good work for my clients. And then I will come home and write cover letters.

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catling42

January 2016

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