January 08, 2014

Optimizing My Workplace

In my on-going effort to come out and make my workplace as suited to my needs as possible, I wrote out a list of little details I think will help others interact with me and understand me better.

I'm not specifically asking for any accommodation. They know I can function within their parameters. But I'm essentially telling them this is how to optimize how I work.

Here's the list I gave them:

1.    I am not ignoring you. Rather, I am often deep in thought, even if I look like I’m staring into space. Because of this, I do not always catch the beginning of a question, greeting or statement. Don’t be shy to repeat what you said, wave or tap me on the shoulder to get my full attention. It’s not because I don’t want to interact. Give me a second to disengage from whatever it was I was doing, so I can properly tune in to you. Also, speak slower.

2.    I lack the awareness to know if I should join into a group or meeting, so I need to be specifically asked or invited to join. I often do not join in, not because I don’t want to, but because I cannot tell if my presence is wanted/welcome.
Because of the above, I may also leave a situation abruptly or earlier than others, without much social grace. Again, I don’t intend to be rude. I really am that clueless.

3.    I am very firm in my beliefs and can become very passionate about getting my points across.  This outburst of passion is not anger or irritation and not directed at anyone personally. I am capable of judging ideas and separating that from the character of a person. I can completely disagree with something you say and still respect you as a person. You’ll find that once I’ve chosen you to be my friend, I am very loyal.

4.    My facial expressions may not always reflect my actual emotions. I suffer from “Resting Bitch Face” probably. Smiles and nervous laughter can mask sadness and fear. Despite my often stern or serious look, I have a quick sense of humour, and I am silly and open-minded. Not much fazes me and because I enjoy researching different aspects of human life, I feel like I’ve seen it all. In general, I like to play Devil’s Advocate and try not to judge. When I am angry for real though, I don’t hide it and you will know.

5.    I like to talk about music, health and medicine, alternative health and diet, motherhood and children, languages and grammar, travel, and religions.
I am not at all well-versed in fashion or make-up.  I dislike watching movies, so I tend not to get references to those things. I do like watching TV series like The Amazing Race, Sherlock, Orange is the New Black, Locked Up…
I have a fascination with prison life and the criminal mind.

6.    I consider myself to be androgynous. I do not care for stereotypical gender roles. I love cooking, baking, canning, sewing, knitting and playing guitar. But I also enjoy fixing minor issues on my car, installing things like ceiling fans and lights, plumbing, and general home maintenance.

7.    I really like making lists.

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