Pushy Or Pushover

Grumpy, grumpy, grumpy!  It was hard for me to be positive and look for grace when I was basically feeling mean and rotten today,  I have not received any of my assistive technology yet and I am really losing my patience.  I have my desk set up so that my monitor is pulled right up close to me and I sit so that it is about six inches away from my face.  IT promises me that ZoomText will be installed “soon,” and I am trying to be patient, but it is hard.

How do I walk the line between being pushy and being a pushover?  How do I get what I need without drawing attention to my “disability”?  I have asked nicely for installation of the software three times (once a week) since I found out that Nazareth already owns it.  Now, I want to yell at someone.  Instead, I try to be patient and wait.

Today, I had a lot of computer work to do.  I stared at the screen all day.  I left work with a terrible headache.  Unfortunately, I took out my frustration and annoyance on my family when I got home.  I know this is not fair to them.

Tomorrow, I will ask again for the ZoomText to be installed.  Hopefully, when I finally get it, it will be the solution that I hope it is going to be.  I want to be able to do my job and still be pleasant to my family at the end of the day.  Surely there is a way that I can do both.

So, where is the good news?  Where is the grace in the waiting for the new technology?  Wher is the grace in grumpiness?  For one thing, there is grace in my family’s love and tenderness toward me at the end of a hard day.  I could feel them loving me back into acting human.  There is grace in the willingness of my student workers to help me “read” any fine print.  There is grace in my learning to walk the line between being pushy and being a pushover.  I am learning to stand up for myself in a way I never have before.  It is necessary for me to learn to advocate for myself.  I think the grace is in learning to advocate for myself while still maintaining kindness and gentleness.  The really good news, at the end of the day, is that my family loves and supports me.  That is the grace I need.

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7 thoughts on “Pushy Or Pushover

  1. All you want to do is be productive and I can understand why you are feeling this way. I agree with Darrel but hopefully you will only have to resort to the written/email portion. In my opinion you are not asking for much as installing this should be a very simple task for an IT professional. I had to take my one contact out yesterday which left all of my vision way way beyond the 20/200. No peripheral vision in that eye due to the extreme myopia. The other eye is having problems too. My reason for mentioning this? I had a hard time with straining and I was NOT having to be on my computer. You are at a job and I love it that you are being your own best advocate. You are not being pushy. You are being proactive. You get a big kudo for that! I hope that they do not drag this on. You will be so much more productive and feel better (no headaches or at least minimal). Keep us informed as we are all in your corner. You know that!

    • Oh, Pam, I know you are always on my side! And you are right in that I will probably only need to do one or two of Darrell’s suggestions before I get what I need. I am sorry that you are having continuing vision problems. I will keep you in my prayers. We need to stick together!

  2. If you need an accommodation in order to be productive on your job and avoid health problems, I can only urge you to keep standing up for yourself by advocating effectively and frequently until your needs have been met to your satisfaction. You can be nice while making sure the job gets done.

    Now that you have made several verbal requests without success, I would suggest that you consider switching to written form. Send an e-mail to your boss asking for a time frame by which your ZoomText will be installed and tested. Don’t forget to ask for any training you might need in order to use the new software as an effective tool. E-mail your boss every day or two for a week until a response is forthcoming. If you feel the response is incomplete, or just represents little more than a pat on the head, keep at your boss asking for specific implementation time frames.

    If you haven’t gotten satisfaction in a couple of weeks, consider escalating your request to your boss’s supervisor and/or to your company’s human resources department. Although you might want to place polite telephone calls to let these people know what’s coming, especially if you know them, don’t forget to follow up all such conversations with e-mail summarizing what has been requested and why it is needed.

    Ultimately, if after all this your needs still aren’t being met, don’t hesitate to get in touch with your department manager or even the company’s president or owner. At this level you may want to consider printing and mailing a certified, signed letter stating your request and the reasons you need the software in order to be productive or avoid health problems.

    Since it sounds like your organization already possesses the software you need, I will stop at this stage. You have additional options, if necessary, including mentioning the Americans with Disabilities Act in your requests and filing a complaint with the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission, but I would be very careful not to jump the gun until you know for sure all other remedies have been exhausted without success.

    One further suggestion I would make is critical. Each time you communicate with someone verbally or in writing about your request, be sure to take thorough notes describing exactly who said what and detailing the results of the communication. Include names and positions of the actors along with the dates, times and locations of all communications.

    Remember, you’re still being nice, but you’re following a process, being systematic and persistent in order to achieve the goal of getting something you know you really need and deserve.

    I hope this helps you. If there is anything I can do, please feel free to visit my website and use the contact information there to reach me.

    • Thank you so much for all the helpful information, Darrell. I feel like you have given me a system that will really work. I am hoping that I only need to take the first couple of steps before my request is met. I have been dealing with IT directly and I think bringing my boss into the loop will work wonders. I will keep my messages nice and upbeat, but I will keep asking. I really appreciate you taking the time to help me. Thank you.

  3. Being a loving person while insisting on justice is challenging, especially for women trained to be “nice.” Remember though, Jesus could be both insistent and loving when the situation required it! Justice is foundational! It is a loving act to pursue it, and it can be pursued in a loving way. You can do this!

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