My first job out of college was as a junior copywriter. We sat in an open bullpen and everyone’s computer screens were visible. Understandably, others grumbled about how much time I spent giggling over the GChat conversations I juggled between projects. But when I was confronted about this behavior, my manager defended me. “She gets all her work done and it’s good,” she said with a shrug.
Millennials have been criticized for the lack of boundaries between their professional and personal lives since they entered the working world. Coming of age with AOL taught us to write papers while flirting with three screen names at once, and bringing a laptop to college lectures helped us surf the web while taking notes. The Recession forced us, as recent graduates, to take side gigs just to avoid moving back in with our parents.
Who knew I was training for this moment—living, working, and parenting under the duress of a global pandemic—my entire career. And still, with over a decade of experience hustling, responding to emails at all hours, and never leaving work at the office and my personal life at home, I have been challenged by the past seven months.