I’m turning into one of those people who talks about work all of the time. I didn’t really expect this to happen to me ever, much less this early in my life, but there you have it. It’s not like I have that many other things I can talk about. My cat? How much I love my friends? How much I dislike driving in Boulder? So work it is.
I won’t go into too much detail about my job, because I work in a fairly tech-savvy part of the education industry. And while it’s okay if my family knows about my love life or lack thereof from my blog, I’d prefer that the people I provide technical support view me as an ascetic whose only goal is to help them use our product. But what I will tell you about my job is that there has been a very steep learning curve. And boy have I learned a lot.
I’ve learned that half-assing will no longer fly. I’ve learned that more communication is better and that I can’t just hide from my mistakes or avoid my problems and hope they’ll go away. There is no “end of the semester” (even though I work in education), where the slate is wiped clean and the people I work with remember only the positive aspects of my personality and few of my flaws. But I’ve also learned some stuff that I can put on a resume, like how to use iMovie, create a deal summary and write press releases.
At the end of July, I was in San Fransisco. I went out with a few friends, one who had recently quit his grown-up job to pursue music, and the other who works for an awesome blog writing about stuff I would never want to write about. I had just started my current job. I was not working as an advice columnist or for a magazine or a record label. I was working in an industry I knew very little about, in a job where I knew there was going to be little opportunity to share my knowledge of celebrity gossip. Anyway, I got drunk and cried a lot.
It’s April now. Countless anxiety dreams, numerous phone calls to my parents asking for career advice and a few panic attacks later, and I love my job. I just got back from New Orleans and I have a fire under my tail. I spent 4 days with my co-workers, collaborating, eating, drinking, and exploring the city. I don’t have much to say, except that everyone was much taller and nicer in person than over email.
So perhaps I seriously considered blowing off a dinner date to get some more work done this week. And maybe my friends and therapist are tired of hearing about my job. I haven’t been writing enough, my taxes aren’t done, and my bike has been in my car all week waiting for me to take it to get fixed. I feel a little crazy, and my feet are tired from working at my standing desk. I have so much more to learn and so much on my to do list. But I’m weirdly happy. I’m less afraid to ask people for favors, becoming better at selling my company and myself, and become more efficient every day.
But I can’t do it 24/7. So tonight I’m going to a square dance.