Thursday, 28 June 2012
Yesterday was a crap day. We've been waiting to find out for six weeks about our jobs. This doesn't mean we're all waiting on offers; we're waiting to hear if our interviews + past 10 months' performance was deemed worthy of getting a year's extension on our work contracts. Instead of getting the news about our news, we were notified that the hiring committee (which goes all the way up to the veryveryvery top) hadn't been able to meet yet to decide our fate.
I felt like a very small ant in a very big anthill. A very small ant with a lot of very big bills to pay, responsibilities to house and feed, and no idea what direction to take next. A very small ant who very much does not want to go live in another anthill. A very small ant that probably thinks way more than an ant really has any business to think... haha.
We all moped and griped around for the next few hours. A "damage control" meeting was hastily called for 4:30. During that meeting, one of the directors for our department stood up and said a few things - really, the only things you could really say in that situation. "Wow. Wish there was something we can do, but this decision goes way above our pay grade." However, he had put together a little presentation for us based on his personal life experience. He talked about how, 10 years ago, he had just been asked to move to a new city with a big-name company of the day. He took the relocation, got engaged to his fiancee within three weeks of his move date, and put down an offer on his first home two months after that.
As he was driving away from signing the papers and heading out to close a $2 million dollar deal three hours away, his boss called. "Did you sign the papers on that house yet? ... Oh no." They'd just gotten some information about impending layoffs. And in the way of Murphy's law, this director ended up being one of the very first let go.
He did subsequently get a job with a less prestigious company that essentially shaped his career (and of course catapulted him into the role he's in now). And his final few slides were cute/corny, but apropos for the situation:
- Control the things you can control and let go of the rest. I'm not able to decide whether or not I get hired at this point (and trust me, if sobbing and begging would do the job I would fly up to headquarters right this second :D). I can, however, line up some back-up options; deliberately schedule some rest and relaxation; manage my time better; focus on finding a stable source of energy; look at the bigger picture and choose to be excited about it; and just put one foot in front of the other.
- Keep a short memory. They keep telling me one thing: Sales is a mind game, just like with sports. It's not even so much a mind game between me and the client, or me and the opponent, as it is a mind game between me, myself and I. And life is a lot like one big sale, or game. The more I doubt myself, the more I shoot myself in the foot. The more I hold grudges or remember past failures, the more my fears overwhelm me. And pretty much, even someone who starts out confident and overqualified can quickly spiral into a self-destructive crash.
So I'll keep a short memory. I won't let past mistakes form a "pattern of failure" in my head.