Sunday, April 2, 2017

Shift Shift

While I have essentially been a freelancer for most of my career, it is only recently that I have thought of my work hours as "shifts." In soaps, the days were simply long, with an in-time, and a scheduled out-time, and an actual out-time that might bear little resemblance to the estimated schedule. You worked as long as you worked, alongside all sorts of people doing the same.

News, however, tends to be a 24-hour, 7-day a week endeavor, with no scheduled start or finish, just an endless loop of ups and downs, which necessitates multiple sets of people, split up into, you guessed it, shifts.

After many months of shifts all over the week and all around the clock, this week my shift, well, shifted. Overnight became a shift bridging day and night. Spending whole shifts with the same people changed into sharing shifts with multiple groups. And all of it shifted my sleep, meal, and life schedules.

So, how did the "shift shift" go? As with most changes in life, it will take time to tell. But what has struck me most so far is my adaptability to it all. We can plant our feet firmly, so that our view stays stable and unchanging, or we can allow ourselves to shift, to look at things a little differently. We can stare straight ahead, because that is what we are used to, or we can shift our gaze, this way and that, in order to see a little more.

For me, the "shift shift" feels like an opportunity for a different vantage point, and a different way to think. If all goes well, the sleep and the meals and the life will catch up, and I will get some new experiences to go with them. Because from where I'm standing--and from where I will be standing--that will be well worth the shift.

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