***edited question for clarity****
My question is:
What can I do to indicate my current mood at my desk? to indicate in a way that's clear, concise and no-nonsense (with least avenue for poking fun). The mood being, "Do not disturb for chit-chat. Unless urgent and work-related, please ping on chat".
That is why in my original question I had mentioned the bit from Ricardo Semler's book, Maverick.
reg my current workplace's existing people, accepted workplace behaviour and collective culture
My current workplace is pretty casual, almost start-up like. So it is completely OK to walk up to someone to chit-chat. How each person entertains this is up to them. I am very polite that way, even if I am busy, I pause my work and deal with such interruptions politely, listening to the person and contributing chit-chat back. While this is fine on most days, except days I just do not want to talk to anyone.
reg. about being a woman at a workplace
There is absolutely nothing wrong in this question being about a woman. Anyone who menstruates (whatever be the gender orientation) knows very well how debilitating it can be to be governed by dropping mood hormones in addition to a drop in energy levels. Not just folks who menstruate but also those with mood disorders know that getting along in a social setting is a real challenge but you have to show up at the place of commitment nevertheless. Bad mood isn't a reason /shouldn't stop us from pursuing our livelihood.
That said, we are not incapable of controlling our moods either. We are capable of controlling our moods but only to a certain extent. If we all were capable of controlling our moods 100% then why don't we suggest that clinically depressed folks to show up to work despite how they are feeling?
There are progressive companies in my city that provide menstrual leave, my current workplace is yet to get there.
That said, not being available for chit-chat occasionally isn't a sign of anti-social behaviour either.
reg. specificity of the my original question
I mentioned past incidents because a combination of bad mood, bad day (someone deciding to talk to me just when I am already feeling vulnerable) leads to a mess at workplace. It has happened before so I am afraid that due to mounting pressures of work, it might happen again.
originally posted question
My temperaments are not even 365 days a year. My brain is almost always on a roller coaster ride of hormones depending on what time of the month it is. While highs are easy to deal with, lows and irritability are not. I don't know why but I feel like everything that can go wrong, seems to go wrong on the days I feel irritable.
How can I indicate to my coworkers that it is not OK to talk to me while I am working?
Sometime ago, I had read this book by Ricardo Semler called Maverick and somewhere in that book was a mention about how workers of a factory had an option to put up simple mood signs against their name. This was to indicate how the person might be feeling that working day so that others can talk to them accordingly.
Will putting up a sign on my desk that reads, "Please do not disturb for next 1 hour", work?1 I feel like this might be cause for being ridiculed or people might irritate me even more just to test my patience. And the day I have very little patience I might actually say something rude and come to regret it later.
At my current workplace, when I was in another team, I was unfortunate to have a coworker who took it upon himself to "talk to me" about some disagreement between me and my manager. It was one of those days where I was not only angry about the issue but also feeling quite low. This all added up to me crying my eyes out. I left that team and have joined a new team.
While this new team is the absolute best when I need help and as team get along well, I am the only woman in the team and they are confused when I quieten down for sometime and choose not to speak (when am irritable).
There is also the stress of mounting work since I am fairly new to this team and struggling through my work for context and speed.
1I am a software developer and I find it very hard to context switch frequently.