Message from the CEO: This Thanksgiving Take Care of Yourself

Message from the CEO: This Thanksgiving Take Care of Yourself

By Eric Masi

President and CEO

Recently some senior Wayside managers and I were reflecting with some of our board members about Wayside’s strengths and accomplishments. It was overwhelming to take stock of all that this agency represents and achieves on behalf of the children and families we serve. I know we never say thank you enough to each other, and I’m especially guilty. So, first of all, please accept my sincere gratitude and appreciation for your incredible dedication and commitment and hard work.

However, in accomplishing all that Wayside does, we know our staff work very, very hard, which can really impact your well-being and those around you. Consequently, as a thank you to staff and also as a message about our commitment to your wellness, we want to do two things:

  1.  We want all staff to take this Friday off. It is a mandatory day off! Take this day for yourself and those around you. For those staff who absolutely must work — specifically in our residential and mobile crisis programs — you’ll be given an additional floating holiday to take between now and August 31.
  2. We all need to try to practice some “disconnecting and disengagement” when we’re not at work. I know for many it’s a time to catch up, but sending each other emails all weekend long just increases somebody else’s stress. We all must take better care of ourselves in order to be there for the kids and families we support. So, let’s stop emailing and texting each other on weekends and holidays. To the extent feasible of course.

Lastly, Thanksgiving is a holiday to be thankful and appreciative, but it comes at a continuously stressful and troublesome time in our world, and in particular in our country. In the past month we have heard alarming testimony in the presidential impeachment hearing – only more alarming is the fact that many have tuned it out, and have tuned out the Democratic presidential candidates and their debates. We may all be feeling fatigued and discouraged, but we must remain engaged.

Overshadowed was the fact that earlier in the month the Supreme Court heard arguments to do away with the DACA program which would affect over 800,000 of our immigrant neighbors who are contributing positively to our country and culture. As they always have.

So it continues to be a very stressful world around us, and somehow you folks find the space to be so incredible for our kids and families, and accomplish so much. I want to show our appreciation with this “mandatory” day off, but also with the sincerest request that you really disengage and disconnect from work when you are not at work.

Let’s pledge to take care of ourselves and our family, friends and coworkers as well. Please have a peaceful, restful and happy Thanksgiving and thank you for all you do.

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