perspective, in three acts

Act I:

After an all-staff announcement that pay-raises are on the way, my supervisor informs me that I will receive a modest raise.  While it won’t make me a millionaire, about $100/month is nothing to sneeze at.  I feel quite pleased with my good fortune.

Act II:

After discussing the aforementioned raises with my co-workers, I discover that everyone who has worked there longer than I have, including my dear co-worker who started a month before I did, all received a raise of about 2½ times the raise I received (I started work 14 days after the “seniority cutoff”).  Suddenly, I feel really crummy about my paycheck.

Act III:

I get together with some good friends in the evening the day of the raise debacle.  I discuss my two reactions with a couple of people, noting that had I not known about my co-workers’ raises, I would be nothing but happy.  Notably, the two friends I was talking with are either unemployed or vastly under-employed (i.e. working part-time retail when he’d like to be using his degree).  At this point, simply having a decent job (not to mention the benefits) feels pretty darn good.

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5 responses to “perspective, in three acts

  1. A boss I once had, both a wise man and a head case, once advised me to look straight ahead and not side-to-side for my happiness. He was talking about a situation exactly like this one.

    You are very aware of your own reactions. That’s a wonderful thing.

  2. Something similar happened to me. Everyone was HAPPY about their raises( i heard the rumors) come to find out, I didn’t get one AT ALL because I got hired about 5 days too late. I was HOT!

  3. Isn’t it amazing how a little bit of perspective changes the way we feel about something?

    I second Lori’s kudos to your awareness of your own reactions.

  4. I can certainly understand all three reactions. The fact that you were able to realize that so much is a matter of perspective is great. I don’t know if I would have made it past the frustration and anger of the second act.

  5. *smiling*…some of my students seem pretty pleased with their grades till they discover what their friends/rivals/class topper has received…it’s human nature…

    Still lacking the seniority cut-off by a margin of fortnight is pretty stiff.

    Congrats for the raise though…and enjoy that new money coming in…

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