‘Oh my! It must be horrible right now!’ ‘You must really be hating your job!’ I wouldn’t want to have your job!’

These are the comments I’m receiving on a regular basis right now. It totally cracks me up to see the shocked look when I tell people that no, I actually enjoy the madness of retailing at Christmas!

No, seriously I do! I love the challenge of getting a customer to smile before they leave my register. I look them in the eye, I engage them in conversation and I am sure to smile at them.

This doesn’t mean that it works with everyone, but I certainly do my best with each one.

The rush of a line of people constantly streaming through as they finish their shopping and head to check out is exhilarating to me. I much prefer that over a trickle of customers coming periodically. The time seems to go so much faster when the work is nonstop.

While some may consider this stressful, I don’t. I look forward to the extra hours and to the time flying by as I serve customer after customer.

It saddens me though to hear the disparaging comments and even feel myself begin to question my enjoyment. But it is even worse to see this done to a coworker or employee elsewhere, and suddenly they start questioning themselves and their envisioned worth if they are willing to subject themselves to such a ‘demeaning position and shift’. When previously they took pride in what they did, now they are embarrassed that they are stuck in this situation. All because of someone else’s status quo.

It’s surprising that people that work ‘regular’ jobs, you know, the 9am to 5pm or 8am to 4pm or even the 7am to 3pm shifts, with an almost normal ebb and flow that doesn’t fluctuate during peak seasons; seem incredulous that we odd shift peak and dip employees don’t despise our employment. But honestly, retail isn’t the only career choice that puts one into odd hours and fluctuating busyness. For example, in the medical field, holidays often bring many more injuries into the Emergency Department than the average Tuesday; and oftentimes shifts range in at least a 12-hour span. Rescue personnel; Restaurants, Hotels and many fields in the customer service industry deal with these consumer driven schedules as well.

So, we should all be thankful for the people that are willing to work the crazy hours and schedules. What about instead of speaking to them as if it’s awful that they do, how about thanking them?

See, because myself and some of my coworkers were willing to get up and go to our job on Black Friday (or whatever day you want to insert); you were able to come take care of what you wanted. Because the hospital staff is willing to work in the middle of the night, you don’t have to wait until 9am to be seen by a medical professional. Because the desk clerk is on hand in the wee morning hours, you can check out for your super early morning flight… and what about those pilots and stewardesses that are there to get you to your destination of choice?

So, don’t be victim to the miserable mindset. Don’t make negative comments to those that are serving you during the crazy times. Don’t try to make us feel like we shouldn’t enjoy our job just because it doesn’t align with your thoughts of ‘acceptable’. If it wasn’t for us doing what we do, you wouldn’t be able to do what you do.

So, show respect and appreciation, and give a positive comment or word. It takes all of us to make this world go around.

Happy Sales to you, Amy

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