Surprising discoveries about 9-5 life

the daily grind

This week at work was awesome- because it was four days short and followed a long weekend. Thank you Labour Day, and thank you Samuel Parnell for leading the lobby for the 8 hour working day, 40 hour working week.

Labour Day used to be “time-and-a-half” day for me, an opportunity which a part-time retail worker, full-time student relished, #getmoney. This year, it came as a very warmly welcomed day off, and I treasured my first Labour Weekend as a yo-pro. When you have three days, you can have a break, but get all your chores done too! I really enjoy working full time, and I expected that I would, but there are a few things about the daily grind that I was surprised to find once I started slogging it out.

9 to 5 is not normal
Firstly, if you work 9-5 and take a lunch break, you can only fill in a 7.5 (or less) on your timesheet. Doing 5 days of that is not going to get you to 40 hours and it might bring up a red flag. Secondly, when I waltz on in at 9, I’m one of the latest ones: there’s an early 7am starter and I have no idea how she does it (I’m still hitting snooze at that time)!

Not everyone eats lunch
For 13 years of my life, the bell rang at 12.30 and we all pulled out our lunch boxes, picked our spots, and ate lunch. At my first year hostel, lunch was the best meal of the day, with two hot options, two soups, a salad bar, toastie stand and chocolate milk. For the remaining 2 years of university, my lunch may not have been extravagant but there was always a midday meal. It’s a very good habit that my hunger and I have not shifted, so you can imagine my surprise when my boss busts open a 4 pack of sushi at 4pm and I’m thinking about dinner…

“Print it out” is the most frequent feedback I receive
Just ARGHHHHHH for this one. I understand it in some situations, but do you really need to print out every single email?

“Print it out again” tends to be the topic of follow up meetings
Again, ARGHHHHHH! #savethetrees

The best ideas come off the clock
A huge part of my role is creative, which means that some of my time is spent in a creative block (more than I would admit). It isn’t until I’m at the gym and the crunches are hurting, or I’m about to take a bite out of my Fed cheesecake that the inspiration comes. Or, after a twelve hour day on a work trip, unwinding with a wine becomes a two hour strategy meeting. There I was thinking that I wouldn’t have to take my work home with me.

FOMO on student life doesn’t get me too often, even though all my best friends are still living it. The only time I was jealous, was after I’d opened 10 Snapchats, all which were selfies showing off a sunny, no-wind, 22 degree Dunedin day. Then I remember that a few weeks back I was sending #viewfromtheoffice Snapchats from Queenstown, so I really couldn’t complain.


Do you work “9 to 5”? And what surprises you about your workplace?

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4 thoughts on “Surprising discoveries about 9-5 life

  1. True, true, and true. I am guilty of hardly ever taking a lunch break… I might treat myself and do it once a week which is truly poor – do as I say, not as I do! And yes, the printing thing is most frustrating… even though we’re all so comfortable with being glued to our screens, for some reason when it comes to work documents we need them printed?!

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    1. WHAT! But we were trained so well to eat our lunch… Although I never went to school with you (weird) so I’d never know your lunch habits. I understand the printing of docs you need to properly read or work with like reports and presentations, but sometime I want to say “think of the trees!” and the accountant would say “think of the 10c colour print!”

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  2. One day I’m sure I’ll understand the 9-5 work week but at the moment I work on a roster of minimum 30 hours with starts from 8am (hello 5am wakeup!) to 10am and then finishing at 6pm. Yay for the hospo life! Can’t wait to get a job that i love when I have finished my degree in 2019!

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