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Sacrifice *does* pay off.

So at American Eagle, we're given something called "call-in" hours in addition to our regular work hours. They're basically like tentative work hours; we call in about an hour before they start to see if the store needs us and if so, we gotta be there or it's just like skipping a regular shift of work.

Due to a few recent factors I've ended up working many of mine this week. And how.

We have two new managers. They're goal is to whip this store into shape. They're demanding but reasonable. For example, they want an orderly, logical stock room. Ours is a nearly innavigable mess. There's men's hoodies among women's jeans; there's graphic t's along side cute fuzzy women's winter hat things; things are out of size order; there's stuff that's supposed to have been out on clearance weeks ago that'd sell just great--if it were actually on the floor; etc.

And so on. In fact we just got a new shipment of more stuff. Like You may be saying, "But, my dear Tophster, isn't it someone's job to take care of this? A, as it were, a 'Stock Manager'?"

Well, yes, good sirs & madams, we did, but he quit this week. Yeah.

So I've worked an extra 11 hours this week. They kept me on for the two 'call-in' hours after my Monday shift, and they brought me in yesterday at noon for my 4 'call-in' hours but kept me around for 9 hours instead. That's right, 5 unscheduled hours. That's an additional $82 or so for my paycheck.

Part me feels bad, though. I had plans. I was gonna meet with my sponsor at 5, then meet up at 6ish with an old friend from the rooms who's been out of town or stuff for a while, go to my home group with him at 7, then grab dinner with another friend after that.

Around about 4pm when my manager asked me if I wouldn't mind staying on a little extra beyond my 4pm 'call-in' hours, I made what could be considered a rash decision. I knew if I got out at 4, I'd prolly narrowly squeak by in meeting with my sponsor at 5, etc. I knew this, and still decided to stay on. And on. And on.

Somewhere in there it did dawn on me I was blowing off my plans and my meeting and stuff. And part of me felt bad; I gave my friends notice in advance that I wasn't gonna meet up with'em. So at least I wasn't a total asshole....

So, why did I blow off what I knew was important--socially, spiritually, etc--for what was differently, if at all, important--financially, professionally, etc? I've been skipping a lot of meetings recently, not entirely because of work, too. It's not a habit I should really let myself get into, and I know it. I should be able to find other meetings that do work with my schedule when there are conflicts. I should also try to prioritize and balance, I suppose, something I'm craptastic with already....

Part of me wanted the money--the extra hours and resulting additional pay. I'm paying rent now and have bills/payments to meet and so forth. Part of me also felt some obligation, loyalty even, to the job. They needed me, more or less, and did appreciate my help. The 6 o'clock girl never showed up, for example.

But was this really my responsibility? Did I really need to do this as I did? Was it the best--or, to put it better, a wise--decision? I can't (continue to) neglect my program as I have. It has to have priority, at the very least relatively. But it's so easy to get wrapped up in the job, thinking about the job, working around the job that I forget to look up workable meetings and plans with my friends and sponsor, etc.....

This'll take some brain-workin--and phone callin, methinks--to work out a feasible, responsible balance. But it'll be more than worth it to keep working my program even as I keep working my job. It's just a matter of how.

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