A Dose Of Reality

Once in a while, something happens that gives you a dose of reality. I finally got that.

Again.

Sometimes I hate it, sometimes I appreciate it. Appreciate it because it reminds me to never assume I’m always good.

That dose of reality actually happened about a month ago. It’s only now I finally got around to writing about it. (okay, venting…)

Ever since I got moved into my new team, I’ve been writing and delivering stuff as best as I can. For a long time, it seemed I’ve been doing good or even well.

Over time, I yearned to do more stuff. Take on more responsibilities and grow.

But for some reason, it hasn’t happened. Still, I continued what I was doing.

Then one day, I asked a higher-up when I can get to do the new stuff. Others who started with or after me seem to be doing more things I wanted to do.

What the person said really hit me hard. To paraphrase, apparently I wasn’t clear and concise with my writing for (what felt like) the longest time.

Essentially, doing that kind of writing has prevented me from being given more and new stuff to do. And here I thought I was doing well!

Or maybe I am, but that they just expected more of me. I don’t really know.

What I do know is I haven’t been meeting certain…expectations. I felt worse because I found out much later rather than sooner.

It felt like I lost a lot of precious time, time I can (obviously) never recoup.

Today, I’m not mad at anyone. Except myself, that is.

At the same time, learning about that reminded me that I should never, ever – how should I say – rest on my laurels. I suppose it’s a so-called habit with some people: they felt they’ve done good work for so long they think can’t go wrong or something.

Well, I certainly did.

Eventually, I asked one of our “seniors” for honest to goodness feedback. How am I really doing, I asked.

Fortunately the person gave specifics, and even “heard” some of my concerns and conflicts. By then, I (hopefully) better understood what I’ve been doing wrong.

Since then, however, it’s been a personal struggle. Or maybe I’m needlessly making things…hard on myself?

Lately I haven’t been hitting our targets. I’m sure I easily can, but it meant “compromising” my work or repeating the same mistakes I made.

To think I have such high hopes of myself, high expectations. Alas, I let myself down.

Again.

On the other hand, I don’t – again – blame anyone. I long accepted that I’m ultimately responsible for my successes and failures.

My fault here is I waited too long to find out; that I should’ve asked sooner.

Moving forward, I decided not to wait for anything or anyone to tell me what I’m doing wrong or how I’m improving. Although I’ll probably rub a few feathers, I’m going to ask and find out myself.

In short, I won’t wait for something to happen. I’ll make something happen.

If what I expect doesn’t happen soon, well…I better ask myself if I still find value in what I’m currently doing.

I just hope it won’t take me (what feels like) another eternity to know by then.

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