I lived in Europe many years ago for a year. Specifically, I lived in Spain. I have been there, done that in terms of the ex-patriot living abroad thing. It was cool. I would probably live abroad again. However, I probably wouldn’t do it in France. First off, I am not a big red wine fan. I am some what allergic to it in that it causes my sinuses to hurt. Good enough reason to stay away from red wine. Since I never really liked it to begin with, I am not really upset at not being able to drink it. I like wet drinks. When I drink dry drinks that are warm, I feel as if I am scraping my tongue. Rest assured, at hearing my pronouncement, many would chastise me to bite my tongue. I do like french fries but I don’t care to eat them with mayonnaise. I am a ketchup person all the way. I was totally fine with calling them freedom fries but admittedly it was a tad bit silly to do so. One more thing, and then I will end my digression, I love cheese so much that thankfully I do not live in France for otherwise half of my day I would be stuffing my face with cheese and the other half I would be on the treadmill. That is just not a great way to live.
Despite all of the above, there is a more trying reason why I cannot live in France. See, in their effort to be a more easy going society, it is now illegal to send weekend work emails. And that, my friends, does not work for me. I need to send emails on the weekend. I need to work on the weekend. Is that a cool way to live? Maybe. Maybe not. I know for sure that as a poor girl that grew up in the South Bronx, I would not have risen to the level of a CEO if had not on occasions worked on the weekend. It is not like I am a slave to my work or to my computer. Imagine this. On a Saturday night, I am watching a Buffy the Vampire Slayer marathon on FX channel and a scene reminds me of a solution to a work problem. I email the team member on that project. That is a simple email that solved an issue and was written while I was watching my favorite television show. Why should such an act be considered horrible treatment of my staff member.
Inspiration comes at all times. It can happen at midnight or at 6am. I can assure you I am hardly inspired at 11am or at 3pm. Both times will usually find me knee deep in meetings or recovering from a slew of meetings. Inspiration is not a 9 to 5pm thing. I wish it were that way. I wish my brain and body worked that way. They just don’t. On Saturday, I sent eight emails in 30 minutes that addressed a myriad of problems and set forth solutions for the week. Three staff members emailed me immediately. The rest waited till Monday, and that was fine. People don’t have to answer my emails. I just feel the need to get them out while my brain is still cooking. Hmm. I would love the ready cheese access in France. But I have to work and keep my brain on a constant level of activity. It can be a poem. It can be a joke. Or it can be a workplan for a new project. My brain decides when it has insights. It drives me. The clock doesn’t drive my brain.
And so it is….
Categories: Culture, current events, Management, mental health, Psychology, work, workplace
I’m with you, inspiration comes at the weirdest times, and usually when I’m doing something completely different. I’ll have to write it down or send off that email before I forget, or it’s gone.
There is SO much about the French way of living and thinking that I don’t understand!