The college’s bell tower had not yet rung 6AM, and the sun was still coming up over the wheat that was drying out from the recent rains, which had at least brought in cooler weather. So sipping hot tea on my patio while donning a sweatshirt in southern Missouri in mid-June was a real treat. Birds singing, an occasional rooster (even though we live in town), and my big black dog was not panting yet. Not bad at all for a summer Monday morning!
Alarm goes off, hit the snooze button a half dozen times, pry the eyes open, and dump your dragging self into the shower. Those of us who live out of two separate buckets (as explained in the Carpe Diem intro) know the routine. Waking up after the second cup of java, we arrive at work feeling like there’s a mountain ahead of us and today is just the first step. Whether the day planner is full or empty isn’t the point. The point is that we would definitely prefer to be somewhere else.
This is where you have to grab the Monday-monster by the neck (to use a socially acceptable metaphor) by celebrating your profession—some way, any way! Creatively let the world know what you do and that what you do is of worth to the world. And it helps to give yourself permission to be a little (or a lot) off the wall in the way you do it.
Currently, I’m a public school nurse at a small town middle school. I love my kids, my faculty, and it’s the best job I’ve EVER had, hands down. But I still have emotional challenges—like if I had to choose between being in my office, or holding my new granddaughter,… c’mon. So on Mondays I decided to wear a real nursing uniform instead of regular “non-medical” threads. Not the white polyester we had back in 70’s with a little white cap (oh, puhLEEZE!!), but good old scrubs, and a white lab coat to complete the ensemble. Interestingly, one of my students remarked, “Hey! You look like a nurse!” (Why didn’t I think of this sooner??)
Little things will do, too, even something that’s a bit of a secret just with you. Employed at Mickie D’s? Tip your hat to every customer on Monday. (THAT will get your supervisor’s attention.) A dentist? Let your adult customers pick something out of the children’s “treasure chest”, just like when they were kids. Stay-at-home mom (arguably one of the most challenging professions in the universe)? Make Monday your “visit the nursing home day”. It doesn’t matter that you don’t know anyone there; you soon will, and so will your children. (Trust me on that one.)
When you hit the snooze button the last time, remember to celebrate Monday as “Professional Day”, and stir in a little fun with the work bucket.