I’m enjoying my new job. But this week my mother reprimanded me for not calling for about 2 weeks. “Have you joined a cult or something?”, she said.
It got me thinking about my new workplace, which takes the whole company culture aspect very seriously. People from work live together, hang out together, do their jobs together. Last weekend was a Christmas getaway, in which the whole London office spent all of Friday, Saturday and most of Sunday together.
There’s loving your job, and then there’s loving your job.
And yet, the idea of the workplace as a second home seems to be an ever-increasing trend. Is it a millennial thing, or has it always secretly been there? Is our generation the first to make the job the home, rather than making the home into the job?
I remember when I was graduating uni, The Devil Wears Prada came out. There was a film which glamourised the idea of someone being married to the job. I mean, it also glamourised someone being an insane and crazy bitch, but that’s a topic for another column. Is it the fault of films and the media which portray the cool, chic side to living to work rather than working to live which are to blame? Or is it now just expected that you stay an hour later every night and work for free? I notice that greasy skin, bad hair, no social life and illness don’t generally make it into these films, which for some reason inevitably star Kate Hudson, Anne Hathaway or similar (yes, it’s OK that you cringed there).
It’s the one thing that worries me about my new workplace; I have the commitment to the job and to the creative work, but am I going to be brought down on not having enough commitment to the company? I love what they do and what they stand for (I mean, even finding a company which stands for anything these days seems to be a miracle) but I already have a life outside of work.
And now, sometimes I almost feel guilty about it.
I have a few great friends, I’m seeing someone who I really hope goes somewhere. I love the idea of making proper friends with my work colleagues, and I love the idea of a healthy, social workplace, but when it becomes a central part of the job? That I find a little worrying; can I give enough?
How much of enough is enough when it comes to enough time with work colleagues?
I used to think being married to the job was what I wanted; I thought I wanted a career over relationships. People had been so shitty to me through my life and left me feeling so unwanted I decided I wouldn’t open up again after my teenage years.
But as the great Diana Vreeland said: “sooner or later you get out there where the rain rains and the sun shines and then it all comes together”.
I got out there. I’ve met people I know I want to keep close and I’ve met those I’ve deliberately pushed away. This new work place is definitely a place I want to keep close. The question is, how close? I want to meet someone, and I want to get married one day. But as they say, three in a marriage is crowded. I’ve been out there for two and a half years, since I moved to London. I’ve built myself a life here, and I’m proud of that, One of the most important things I think I’ve found is that there is much more to life than just the the career.
And yet, for whatever reason, it seem to be expected now in order to earn advancement.
So when it comes to being married to the job: is it making your mark, or millennial mess?