Thursday, March 31, 2011

Pulling myself up by my bootstraps

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Warning: This is a kvetching post. Read on at your own risk, I had to be such a downer. For some reason, I am unable to fully believe in myself in the workplace - self-doubts I never had while I was in school come creeping up into me, and I find myself apologizing for things that are just mistakes as though I'm the only person who ever would have made them. Yes, I have a bit of a Type A perfectionism thing going on that is definitely leftover from school - a 100% was preferred over a 90% every single time in how I viewed my abilities - and yes I have a sort of superiority complex that really can't exist at work, you can't be the best at something new. But I hate not understanding things, and I get frustrated easily, so it would make sense that at each new job, the starting over at the bottom of the ladder is harder and harder.  Yesterday my boss sat down with me and advised me to take my time with tasks and assignments, check over the final products, get verification of responses from the get-go rather than having to go back after-the-fact. And it was all presented to me very professionally and earnestly, although I could tell she was herself frustrated at having to take time to have such a conversation, there was nothing angry or shaming about it, and yet I felt absolutely discouraged. I hate having to be told I'm doing something wrong, or that I could be doing anything better, and even though that is the very point of learning - making mistakes until you get things right, always, always, always having to improve and better your performance, it is still always frustrating for me to hear. Especially because I convince myself that no one else has to hear feedback like mine,. And maybe no one here has, maybe that's the case, but people all over the world receive constructive criticism everyday  (right...?) And it also proves that they want to keep me around, want me to improve (even if it is just that they don't want to go through the hassle of having to find someone new with which to replace me, that really isn't the point) - the point is that I wasn't laid off, I wasn't fired, I wasn't reprimanded harshly, or docked in pay. I was simply spoken to, instructed firmly, and advised to improve. There's nothing so awful about any of that, outside of a bruised ego, so I wish I could just take the lesson as it was intended, bring my best to the workplace everyday, and just do the best that I can, asking questions and getting clarification along the way, no matter how busy or frazzled those who have the knowledge I seek, may seem. I hate being a burden, I hate not getting things, and I hate having tasks pile up, preferring instead to finish things quickly in a manner of big-picture-"well-enough", which are all things that do not bode well in corporate workplaces. So they are things I must improve upon.

That is all that was brought up yesterday - ways for me to improve and become an asset to my team. There is nothing so wrong about that. I just wish my heart and confidence could catch up with my head that speaks like that. And so, I begin this Thursday with a truly venting post, because I ran out of time to journal it last night, and typing is so much faster for me anyway. I do so hope I didn't bring anyone down with my venting, I just had to get some insecurities out. So there you have it. Consistency is the key, keeping myself moving forward and working hard in those moments when I'm burned out and just want to take the easy way out. I can't do that. That's not what a company pays you for. So I gotta keep pushing myself. I just have to do it.

Happy Thursday all, and wish me luck on this self-improvement tour.Also, bravo if you read this whole thing!

1 comment:

  1. I think everyone has had the conversation at some point or another. It just takes time to become perfect at something! Don't feel discouraged. But I know what you mean, it doesn't make for a fun day.
    I hope your weekend is filled with loveliness that will get you smiling again :)