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  1. #11
    Let me count the ways Betty Blue's Avatar
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    Ugh, I thought this thread was about people on benefits having to work for free if they have been unemployed for a certain period of time. It's a ridiculous scheme in the U.k.

    To the Op, over committing can be hard, especially as you genuinely want to help people. But... part of it is down to not being able to say no, imo cowardice or fear of confrontation. Think about it like this... the more you take on, the more you dilute the help that you are giving and most importantly the help that you are able to give yourself. Ultimately you will end up letting down other people and yourself. Take some time out, let people know that you need a break, give a timeframe and use that time to work on yourself. Also don't give in, if people are still asking despite you letting them know you need this time... cut them loose


    For myself... I have had to let go of a lot of one sided friendships, partly my own fault for allowing myself to be taken advantage of, partly not because their behaviour was crappy not mine. Essentially I see the red flags a lot earlier on and don't give people 'chances'... either show me this is an equal friendship.... e.g getting as much as your giving... or thereabouts... or naff off. Ofc sometimes what people offer and require is not balanced at various stages of friendship but you can see pretty early on if it's heavily weighted.

    Maybe a good way round it is to say that you have to charge for help with essays etc because it's taking out of your free time, you can only cover one shift a month (unless you want the extra shift) etc... put down some boundaries... and stick to them.
    "We knew he was someone who had a tragic flaw, that's where his greatness came from"
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  2. #12
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    Quote Originally Posted by Betty Blue View Post
    Ugh, I thought this thread was about people on benefits having to work for free if they have been unemployed for a certain period of time. It's a ridiculous scheme in the U.k.

    Maybe a good way round it is to say that you have to charge for help with essays etc because it's taking out of your free time, you can only cover one shift a month (unless you want the extra shift) etc... put down some boundaries... and stick to them.
    I dont like the idea of compelled voluntary work any more than I like the idea of conscription or national service, that sort of thing can ruin the services involved, its better to have actual professionalism as an aspect of the service.

    I've heard people talk about how one problem with voluntary work is that it attracts volunteers, ie not the average man or woman but individuals who are motivated to volunteer, that may sound odd but that sort of motivation is not commonplace. Compelling people with the threat of destitution or hardship is not going to correct that. If its based on some idea about overcoming aversions to social contact or employment I doubt it would work for that either. Nothing that is coercive is likely to, it'll only produce desperation.

    Your final point is an interesting one too, I've heard plenty of people make that sort of suggestion or assertion like its not difficult or has no consequences. If you work in a team and have been going above and beyond for some time and then seek to adjust down to what it the average out put of colleagues that by itself could lead others who've grown used to the extra productivity to imagine that you are under performing. I've heard very unfair estimations of peoples performance or productivity which has involved estimations which are "normal for A" or "normal for B" as opposed to referencing an average or common performance goal or expectation.

    There are also commonly held views about peoples circumstances that are unfair, for instance if someone is single, if someone has volunteered before now, even with clear limits placed on the willingness to do so. I appreciate that in both instances its a good idea to consciously or deliberately manage expectations from the outset or do not share information about your private life and other obligations in the workplace. That itself is not always easy and can be treated critically by colleagues or management, it can depend on the workplace's business culture too.

    Sometimes these cultures just exist and people pick them up or learn them and the reproduce or perpetuate them. Other times already harsh cultures can become worse as people seek to "improve" on productivity and only have that one way of defining/conceiving of it. There are also questions about the wider norms or culture which could reinforce that sort of thing too. I personally think this is an issue, especially as a lot of it is becoming less and less conscious or operates just beneath peoples awareness, ie there's denial, minimising, rationalisations etc. etc.

  3. #13
    Analytical Dreamer Coriolis's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Merced View Post
    For some reason, I struggle with the concept. Be it someone is asking for help with their homework to volunteering to take someone's shift when they mention they had plans. I think for me it's the feeling of making someone happy that fuels it, even if I end up regretting it later.

    How often do you volunteer for things? Why do you think that is? If it's too often, how do you do it less? and of it's not often enough, how do you do it more?
    When I volunteer it is most likely because I see a need that I am in a position to meet. I do it less to make someone else happy or even help them out, than to have the satisfaction of solving whatever the problem is, and to nudge the world a bit closer to how I think it should be. I especially enjoy volunteering when it involves my learning something new or somehow also improving or challenging myself in some way. Occasionally I might overextend myself with volunteer commitments, but given my perspective on that, view it is just a greater investment in what is important to me.

    Quote Originally Posted by Virtual ghost View Post
    First of all I am from the place that doesn't really believe in volunteering as the English speaking world. On the other hand I keep personal matters at the distance in order not to get dragged into what often turns into a mess. Therefore I get into things mostly from the perspective of getting in and fixing it permanently for everybody or I do it if it benefits me (and doesn't brake laws). But if the person is really in trouble I help solve the "here and now crisis", plus I give small things to the poor all the time. However I don't ever do the heart in the sleeve type of volunteering, especially since it turned out that by keeping your head cool you generally have bigger chances to help people in concrete fashion.
    I agree with the highlighted as well.
    I've been called a criminal, a terrorist, and a threat to the known universe. But everything you were told is a lie. The truth is, they've taken our freedom, our home, and our future. The time has come for all humanity to take a stand...
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  4. #14
    Let me count the ways Betty Blue's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Lark View Post
    I dont like the idea of compelled voluntary work any more than I like the idea of conscription or national service, that sort of thing can ruin the services involved, its better to have actual professionalism as an aspect of the service.

    I've heard people talk about how one problem with voluntary work is that it attracts volunteers, ie not the average man or woman but individuals who are motivated to volunteer, that may sound odd but that sort of motivation is not commonplace. Compelling people with the threat of destitution or hardship is not going to correct that. If its based on some idea about overcoming aversions to social contact or employment I doubt it would work for that either. Nothing that is coercive is likely to, it'll only produce desperation.

    Your final point is an interesting one too, I've heard plenty of people make that sort of suggestion or assertion like its not difficult or has no consequences. If you work in a team and have been going above and beyond for some time and then seek to adjust down to what it the average out put of colleagues that by itself could lead others who've grown used to the extra productivity to imagine that you are under performing. I've heard very unfair estimations of peoples performance or productivity which has involved estimations which are "normal for A" or "normal for B" as opposed to referencing an average or common performance goal or expectation.

    There are also commonly held views about peoples circumstances that are unfair, for instance if someone is single, if someone has volunteered before now, even with clear limits placed on the willingness to do so. I appreciate that in both instances its a good idea to consciously or deliberately manage expectations from the outset or do not share information about your private life and other obligations in the workplace. That itself is not always easy and can be treated critically by colleagues or management, it can depend on the workplace's business culture too.

    Sometimes these cultures just exist and people pick them up or learn them and the reproduce or perpetuate them. Other times already harsh cultures can become worse as people seek to "improve" on productivity and only have that one way of defining/conceiving of it. There are also questions about the wider norms or culture which could reinforce that sort of thing too. I personally think this is an issue, especially as a lot of it is becoming less and less conscious or operates just beneath peoples awareness, ie there's denial, minimising, rationalisations etc. etc.
    In reply to the first point, I had a conversation with a friend about it who highlighted that if companies who take on 'free labour' have the places to offer, they should be offering to pay the individuals, ergo, helping to lower unemployment rates because those people are actually looking for work in the first place. I believe there was a particular 'scheme' in Tesco's stores at that time.

    In reply to the second, I think something radical has to shift in terms of the op if they want change. The most damaging outcome is where unrealistic boundaries are put in place and then broken, because that will loose them respect and make it exponentially difficult to assert future boundaries. So... a little time and consideration about some realistic boundaries, good communication and reviewing the situation at a set later date... Often the outcome with these things is you have to let go of certain contacts because they just don't have the respect or can't stick to boundaries... but really it is only saving the individual more time and stress by letting them go earlier on.
    "We knew he was someone who had a tragic flaw, that's where his greatness came from"

  5. #15
    Mastermind Fieldmarshal Sacrophagus's Avatar
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    How often do you volunteer for things? Why do you think that is?
    I rarely do.
    You have to be someone really in distress for that to happen and then I will do it for the love of it, and not to make someone happy. I rarely care about that.


    If it's someone able who needs a little bit of help, I'm rather the person who will efficiently teach you to fish and leave you with all the work. I might also help you through other things to give you a boost if you're motivated enough and know what you're doing, but that's about it.


    Otherwise, the only volunteering I did was relevant to my career. There was some learning experience behind them.

    The reason why I'm not that much into volunteering since a long time ago is that because people start expecting you to do their bidding. Even those you love.
    When I was a kid, I grew up fond of challenges and solving problems. At one point, I felt a pattern of manipulation going on. As in they would insidiously speak comments that mean they expect everything I do to be beyond perfection, pushing their luck,...etc. I despised the very attempt to manipulate me and I started saying No to the people I love with a smile. I figured back then that not all people are in control and have the moral decency to feel gratitude and simply shut up. After all, I thought, why would they feel gratitude for something that came for free? Most of us are ungrateful on different levels. That's what I figured out back then, and I started valuing myself and my time more.


    I think there are only a few relationships where one is expected to volunteer and to help naturally and it feels effortless.
    If it feels like a chore, don't do it.


    If it's too often, how do you do it less? and of it's not often enough, how do you do it more?
    I think there are many ways to give and contribute to the world. Each one of us has their own. Volunteering is not mine.
    الخَيلُ وَاللَيلُ وَالبَيداءُ تَعرِفُني *** وَالسَيفُ وَالرُمحُ وَالقِرطاسُ وَالقَلَمُ
    Swift steeds, dreary nights, and the desolate wasteland, all know me full well
    As do the sword, the spear, the paper and the pen.
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  6. #16
    Moderator Yuu's Avatar
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    It's a give and take thing.

    If someone is an asshole to me-and most people I am not close to are- then no, fuck those guys. If it is a close friend and they need something that I can offer without much inconvenience then yes.
    " Do something, even if it's wrong."

    " I don't wanna have to but I will, if that's what I'm supposed to do
    We don't wanna set up for the kill, but that's what I'm 'bout to do."
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  7. #17
    Analytical Dreamer Coriolis's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Sacrophagus View Post
    I rarely do.
    You have to be someone really in distress for that to happen and then I will do it for the love of it, and not to make someone happy. I rarely care about that.

    If it's someone able who needs a little bit of help, I'm rather the person who will efficiently teach you to fish and leave you with all the work. I might also help you through other things to give you a boost if you're motivated enough and know what you're doing, but that's about it.

    Otherwise, the only volunteering I did was relevant to my career. There was some learning experience behind them.
    I agree about volunteering to help individuals. I have no patience with people who are not at least trying to help themselves, and will usually show them how rather than do it for them. When I speak of volunteering, I usually mean working with a group whose goals I support. Then it becomes as much about promoting my values in the world as anything else.
    I've been called a criminal, a terrorist, and a threat to the known universe. But everything you were told is a lie. The truth is, they've taken our freedom, our home, and our future. The time has come for all humanity to take a stand...

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