Friday, July 20, 2012

Failure to be Unrealistic

I hate to fail!  If I decide to do something,  I want to do it well.  Be the BEST!

Every year at my job, an agency comes in to review our files.  It is well known that their expectations are unrealistic but it gets to me every time.

Don't get me wrong.  On the outside, the requirements make sense...until they are put into practice.

This year has been no exception.  The review did not go well.
The difference is that this year I'm looking at it almost proudly.  I still hate to fail but when I step back and look at the reasons that I failed, it makes me feel good.

One of the requirements is to educate the individuals that we serve and their families about medical issues and medications.  Since I work with individuals with various disabilities, their comprehension varies too.  The two girls that I was reviewed on this year don't communicate verbally and one of them is also blind.

So no, I didn't educate these two girls or their parents on their medical conditions.  First of all the facility where they live has 3 full time nurses on staff.  What can I say that they can't or don't already say?  Neither of them would understand what I was saying anyway and their parents have lived with these conditions all their lives.  They already know and don't need to be reminded.

Instead I have been working with the girls' staff to come up with ways to keep them and those around them safe from their self-injury.  The girl who is blind did it to herself by hitting herself in the face so frequently and so hard.  This year she broke her own nose.

Ironically she hit the reviewer when she was met her.

Instead of trying to do the impossible, I have spent my time with her trying to find ways of keeping her safe and engaged in activities that she enjoys, per her mom's request.  Her quality of life is critical to her overall well-being.

So, shame on me, but I think that is more important!

I still hate not doing well at something but in this case, I'm over it.

Have you ever been asked to do something that you don't believe in?  How did you handle it?


  1. You were doing the right thing instead. Don't worry about unrealistic and impractical rules and requirements.

  2. Sounds like you're giving the sensible info. It reminds me of when I learned about special ed teachers for students with severe disabilities having to give MCAS to these students. The time could be better served with bathroom training or learning how to tie shoes instead of teaching about habitats.

  3. Sounds like you did the right thing and the outlined expectations don't always work well.

    Yes, I face situations in which I'm asked to do things that make no sense to me. Ugh.

  4. I agree, keeping her safe is the most important and legally if you are not a doctor or a nurse you have no legal or moral obligation to discuss their medical condition with them or their family. IF any thing it's in the family's best interest to keep you informed.. so that you can better serve and protect their children. Sounds like you have a very tough and stressful job but nevertheless I can see how much you enjoy it and how much compassion you have for these children. Just know, that you did the right thing and I'm glad that you don't feel guilty about it.. I too don't enjoy failing very often which is why I try so hard to be perfect but at the end of the day, I'm still human. I'm allowed to cut myself atleast some slack every now and then. You should too! Be proud of who you are Heather!

  5. It often seems to me a very strange world when inappropriate rules and regulations are imposed on people that in reality will have little or no benefit to them. Sounds to me like you have done the right thing here, that's not a failure in my book.

  6. Sounds like you should be proud of your achievements. The outside auditor doesn't sound very clued in. Sometimes you have to appear to be doing something even when you know it's a waste of time. I for one hate doing a task that seems pointless, so I can well understand how you feel.

  7. Good job!!! You need to care for your patient's individual needs and it sounds like you do!! No one fits into a cookie cutter audit.

  8. Fortunately I have been blessed to work with very ethical people over the years, so I haven't had to do anything I didn;t agree with. Challenging? Yes. But not unethical, immoral, or illegal.

  9. Gotta love the pencil pushers. I wonder sometimes if they have ever spent a day in the trenches. As a parent I'm always in awe of the stupid stuff we all have to go through to keep the higher ups happy. When my daughter was still in school and had a wrap around aide, we had to see a psychologist twice a year. He had to review our case and decide if anything had changed and if Tiff still needed assistance. Well of course she always did. You don't cure Down Syndrome. We all jumped through the hoop. The guy was good natured and joked about how silly it was. He'd visit with Tiff and sign things off. It was kind of a hassle to haul Tiff to his office whenever the appointment was scheduled, but we did it. The state paid for the psychologist to review the case so no sweat for us there, but kind of a waste for the tax payers. Hang in there. It sounds like you are doing the right thing, even if it isn't the "correct' thing.

  10. I felt like that a lot in customer service. I managed a Starbucks for quite a few years and there are so many unrealistic expectations coming down from corporate, people behind desks and only looking at spreadsheets, that it was almost impossible to get the job done. Everyone wants more done with less. I became apathetic for a long time, just doing enough to get by out of frustration, and it took me too long to get to the point of this isn't worth it anymore. I've been out for six months now and feel so much better about going to work each day. The work I do now is harder, but I care again, and that makes it worth it.

  11. You apparently knew more about the situation and the right way to handle it. You were doing what the people the really mattered in the end wanted so that was the right thing.

    I've been asked to do things I didn't necessarily like or even approve of. Once I worked for a company that I found out was a scam operation and I quit when I found that out. It seemed on the up and up at first, but then I found out they were ripping people off. I left before the FBI stepped in and started investigating.

    Tossing It Out

  12. I'm one of those people that sets very low expectations and then pushes to pass those by about a mile and a half. If the expectations of someone else, someone who doesn't do exactly what I do is higher than reasonable, I don't mind failing them as long as I don't fail myself.
    I'm glad to see that's how you're thinking too. You're working to help these girls the best way you can, even if it's not the way others think you should. Good for you.

  13. I usually try to avoid doing anything that I don't agree with, but if it comes down to it and I'm forced, sometimes I have to walk away. Doing the right thing is not always doing what if "correct."

  14. I think you have the right attitude, Heather. You have to make decisions that fit well with you and not always go by the book. D

  15. I think you are succeeding instead of failing. You realize there is a problem and try to help that instead of doing what some book or rule people say.

  16. I say Congratulations! You have succeeded by putting the girls first rather than your "grade."

  17. I think you're doing the right thing.

    I've come across auditors who lack commonsense and feverishly breathe down everyone's backs with suggestions. Some of their suggestions are fine, but I also get the sensation that some of them try to find fault to justify their own jobs. Meanwhile, they're not on the front lines in our positions. There are so many nuances they don't care to see when it comes to our responsibilities.