An exercise in trust
This past week I have not stepped foot in the office. About two weeks ago I twisted my ankle and did some damage to a ligament. It went from bad to worse and by last week Friday I was on crutches. Then, just to add to the fun, my tonsils decided to re-sprout despite them being removed when I was two. Tonsillitis – hello my old friend.
Let’s take a step back – the reason my ankle stopped healing and actually became worse was because I insisted on going to work (and for me this means a lot of walking to and from the bus). I didn’t want to disappoint Liz and Sarah or make them think I wasn’t working as hard as I could.
On Friday afternoon, after my appointment with the physio and my introduction to the never-ending pain of crutches, Liz, Sarah and I had a chat. They suggested that I work from home for a bit, and I explained to them my feelings of apprehension and guilt about working from home. In my experience, I find that if I must work from home I end up working at the speed of sound to make up for these feelings. They patiently explained to me that they trust me and that sometimes you need to take the time to heal.
But how do you get to this point of trust with your bosses/superiors/co-workers?
Apparently the chat on Friday wasn’t enough for me. By Monday evening my throat was feeling weird. Should it hurt to drink liquid? My instincts told me no!
On Tuesday I woke up dizzy, hot, and with another person’s throat apparatus. I am not going to take full credit for re-growing my tonsils but I will say this: stress is a powerful thing.
In this instance the problem lay with me – they know that I work hard and that I take responsibility for myself.
All that I needed to do was see that.
People today constantly go on about millennials and how they work differently and need flexibility. I don’t think flexibility is exclusive to millennials (what makes them – us – so special?). This kind of flexibility works for everyone. As an employee, flexibility means my ankle gets a chance to really heal and my over-stressed body gets a chance to relax. And for my employers, the flexibility coupled with trust means they get the results that they need.