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Aniexty attacks everyday at work


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I work remotely as a programmer. Lately, I feel like work has been piling up a lot. Some of my other contractors either don’t or can’t contribute as much due to either laziness or incompetence. 

This has sort of put me in a situation where the client depends on me to solve some of the more complicated issues. I don’t necessarily mind but lately one of the senior developers for the client that I work closely with has been putting pressure on me to solve a certain problem.

Everyday he will contact me about it and check in my progress. I feel like it’s not his fault and he has people he has to answer to who are probably putting pressure on him.

But the problem is not simple at all and the client spent a month working on it before they dumped it on me. I think it’s less about this problem and more that I just feel exhausted after coming back to this company. 

I feel like if I just keep my work life and personal life separate then I won’t keep having this attacks. But it’s hard not to keeping thinking of these problems and it’s stressing me out a lot.

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How much of your time and energy is being wasted on these check ins rather than on solving the issue?

One way to address this is maybe to take charge and send him a quick e-mail with the updates before he bothers you. Also, you can send him a polite e-mail about how much time it will take to solve x, then y, and so on and again, update him as needed that x has been met, y has been met, etc.

What pressure he is under is not your problem. You need to figure out how to stop him from wasting your time and passing that pressure and stress onto you. I find that the above approach works well with anxious or pushy clients.

Also, if they still try to push, I will push back with something like, "As per schedule, your next update will be provided on y date/time. Thank you for your patience." Sometimes you just have to draw boundaries with people for the sake of your own sanity and productivity.

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Thanks. Yeah, I think I’m probably to blame since it’s hard for me to draw boundaries. It’s just I feel bad for the developer and I guess I am feeling more pressure then necessary. Anyways, always appreciate the quick reply and sound advice.

ill probably have to reread this everytime I’m experiencing one of my attacks. This behavior has been an ongoing issue for me in past jobs as well. 

Anyways thanks again

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I would just try to get into the habit of updating clients when it's convenient for you.

So maybe it's when you start up your day, you send a quick update e-mail, or at the end of your day, you send an update of where things stand. Once people get used to that, they calm down and leave you be to do your work.

Another thing that I do is when I'm working on something that requires concentration, I will shut off my phone, e-mail/text notifications, chat notifications and just spend those quiet few hours focused on the task. Once done or when I need to take a break because I can't focus like that anymore, then I turn things back on and check in, send out updates, respond to messages, etc. I find that it really helps to manage workflow and with that, stress. When you get things done because you carve out that quiet time, you ultimately have less stress because your projects are actually getting completed.

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I've found that it is not necessary to respond to emails immediately.

I'm working on a big project right now (which is intense, hence why I take breaks to post on here lol). Other people email me, but I explained I'm working on a big project and I will respond when I am able to. Most things can wait a few hours.

I would ask this person to expect one email daily detailing your progress. Choose the time of day that works for you and set it up in your calendar. Only email this person at that time unless you have an urgent question or update. That way you have time to work and they won't bombard you asking for updates.

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