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Speaking from experience. A publication from Medium about work.

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I was part of the mass burnout affecting an entire working generation

A woman gasping for air above water
A woman gasping for air above water
Illustration: Malte Mueller/Getty

Reader note: This article contains discussion of self-harm and suicidal ideation. See the end of the article for helpful resources.

My name is Dani Alexis, and I’m a workaholic.

Were I confessing to a drug or alcohol addiction, this admission would elicit concern. It might even be mildly shocking. Certainly it would be seen as a problem to be corrected, and I would be praised for my efforts to break free of my unhealthy relationship with my drug of choice.

Because my drug of choice is work, however, I usually get the opposite reaction. I’ve been praised for my “work…


Just because we had to endure work without pay doesn’t mean we should pass it on to the next generation

Unpaid interns at the United Nations (UN) in Geneva hold a banner that says “PAY YOUR INTERNS” during a demonstration organized by The Fair Internship Initiative (FII) on August 14, 2017.
Unpaid interns at the United Nations (UN) in Geneva hold a banner that says “PAY YOUR INTERNS” during a demonstration organized by The Fair Internship Initiative (FII) on August 14, 2017.
Photo: Fabrice Coffrini/AFP/Getty Images

We’re told we need to go to college to learn how to enter an industry to make money for ourselves. At the same time, college is becoming increasingly more expensive and less affordable. There are so many of us who didn’t have trust funds to rely on or the option of leaning on a scholarship. Many of us have struggled because we had to support ourselves while simultaneously managing to graduate.

In addition to all of this, getting an internship is a step of the college journey that’s practically forced down our throats. If we don’t get one, the chances…


The messaging app works best when you use it for anything but work

Photo: Austin Distel/Unsplash

A dream job is not a real job. A dream job consists of certain parameters: There’s the income, the environment, the expectations, the potential for growth and satisfaction. Those parameters are promises, but they don’t play out in reliable ways. A dream job exists only in its promises.

A real job exists in reality, and reality is filled with many undesirable things. For example, you can land your dream job, only to find out that in order to keep this dream job, you must participate in something as silly as a work retreat. Which genius convinced enough people to go…


American companies have been blaming workers for their own unhappiness since the late 1800s

Chefs walk out of the Ritz hotel in London to hear an address by Arthur Lewis MP after which they went on strike.
Chefs walk out of the Ritz hotel in London to hear an address by Arthur Lewis MP after which they went on strike.
Photo: Keystone/Hulton Archive/Getty

What exactly is a disgruntled employee? Is that a bad thing?

Corporations or organizations frequently use the term to explain away workers’ allegations of employer malfeasance. We’ve all heard things like, “This complaint doesn’t reflect our company culture; this is a controversy cooked up by a few disgruntled employees. Our workers are overwhelmingly happy with their jobs, their working conditions, and their pay. We know, because we ask them if they’re happy, and they assure us that they are.”

Even if they don’t use those exact words, employers have often tried to deflect accusations of harmful behavior by dismissing the…

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