Performance anxiety

There are few things that impede my productivity like interruptions. I have to keep numerous things in mind when I’m occupied on certain particular activities, so my train of thought is easily derailed. I could extend the metaphor with exploding engines, flying shrapnel and injured passengers moaning in agony, but I leave that as an exercise for the student. The laborious task of pulling all the scattered bits and pieces together for another go takes time. More often than not, I have to redo portions of the work to ensure that nothing gets left behind. Naturally, the deadlines remain fixed.

Consequently, when someone bothers me three times a day to get a ‘progress update’ on a job that I have stated on a number of occasions would only be ready at the end of next week, the red mist starts to rise. Now this ‘someone’ happens to be my boss, so although “piss off and leave me alone, you filthy turd of camel with anus disease* ” would be an effective (albeit short-term) solution, it really isn’t an option. I have to dredge up a fake smile from my ever-dwindling supply of insincere jovial expressions and say something like, “Getting there. Should be done end of next week”. LIKE I TOLD YOU YESTERDAY! And the day before. And the day before THAT. For the love of small green apples! I know my lips are moving. I hear the words coming out of my mouth. Why does nothing seem to penetrate that fat, greasy head of yours? These wrinkles around my eyes are not laugh lines, they are the result of the spring winding ever tighter.

I feel that I am justifiably irked.

* this charming insult was lifted from ‘Souls in the Great Machine’ by Sean McMullen


10 thoughts on “Performance anxiety

  1. bosses; they’re all the bloody same. they should dig a huge hole in the ground, jump in and ask, “when will I get out?” in which we delightfully reply, “never you *&$#^en asshole.”

    – destroy the boss. detroy the boss. join me now, destroy the boss. –


  2. My mind also has this difficulty dealing with interruptions. My ideal job would be one where I get to start things and leave the finishing of to someone else.


  3. perhaps you could explain to the boss-man that the work’s more likely to get done if he shuts up about it. but in a sarcastic, sneaky way, so he doesn’t realize you’re being a smart-ass.


  4. Next time try looking up at him with your best bleary-eyed impression and say, “Is it Friday already???”

    But ag shame, Kyknoord, performance anxiety…?!


  5. …my ever-dwindling supply of insincere jovial expressions… I am going to have to remember that one! As it stands, my best insincere jovial expression combines the word ‘fabulous’ (drawing the ‘a’ waaaay out) with the expression of a grinning chipmunk on crack that just got stabbed in the ass with a tack. Come to think of it, I think that surpasses jovial and goes directly to disturbing.


  6. eKapa: Ah, a mantra I can truly relate to.

    Boertjie: So ‘gigolo’ is clearly not the job for you, then.

    IITQ: Actually, it’s my boss who has the performance anxiety. That’s why I can’t tell him to go and get fucked.

    jen see: I’m afraid that ship has sailed, jen 🙂

    terri: I’ll give it try. Well, I’ll have to do it next week, seeing as it actually is Friday today.

    Lucy McGoldNugget: The f-a-a-a-a-abulous chipmunk on crack (that’s been stabbed in the ass with a tack) expression?. Excellent – a new one. My supply has just been replenished ever so slightly.


  7. Oh Kyknoord, will you still love me if I admit to you that I am studying to become one of those bosses? I will be nicer to my employees though – I promise to stop by them only once a day to ask how they are doing with their respective tasks. In turn, I will expect them to fill out a plethora of time management forms every day so that I will still be able to monitor their progress closely. Sounds fair, no?


  8. My boss is good natured and when he does something like this, I usually go, “Wow, Déjà Vu! I could have sworn we had this exact conversation before, many times over”
    If all else fails, when you see him coming in your direction, go on the defense and answer him before he gets to ask the question. He’ll get the message.


  9. lisa: Of course I’ll still love you, although I seriously doubt that my boss’s unique brand of ‘management-by-being-an-utter-pain-in-the-ass’ can be taught. It’s something you have to be born with.

    chitty: Perhaps I should mention that my boss has no sense of humour whatsoever. The wrinkles around his eyes aren’t laugh lines, either. They’re caused by excessive squinting during his daily nit-hunt.


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