I think it’s about time that I write another blog post, to commemorate my two month and a half “professional” “adult” life.
In July 15th I started my first job, and although I still make plenty of mistakes every single day (when will my stupidity stop…), I feel like I can say I learn a rather valuable lesson: how to accept and live with one’s own mistakes.
Sometimes at work, I make a mistake, and instantly someone points it out. Looking back, I don’t think people generally keep track of which mistakes I make, what time I make them, and so forth. In anyways I get enough criticism from myself, sometimes so much that I feel suffocated. I am slowly getting better at preventing myself from drifting away into unconscious guilt and regret, whenever a minor mistake happens, but I think as a student, I didn’t develop the ability to deal with mistakes. Well, if one looks at my blog posts, I had my share of “down time” in Universities. But somehow I feel like, in Universities one’s mistakes are almost always “insured”, meaning, the gravest mistake I could have committed on a campus would still be my responsibility, but there will be plenty of people ready to clean up behind me. Also, another thing I realized, is that as a student, the type and size of “mess” one can make is rather limited: it’s hardly likely that if I mess up one comma on my exam, the SEC will be behind my back. In other words, the amount of “responsibility” that I was taking in Universities, is nothing in comparison to what an actual adult needs to take in real life.
And this realization scares me. Sometimes when I am working, I get scared of making mistakes and even more, of the years to come, each containing millions of chances that, everything could, and maybe will, go wrong. I am scared of the uncertainty partially because, it is the “unknown”, but also because I don’t think I have the ability to deal with whatever mess I will create in the future.
And then I tell myself that life goes on, and that out of necessity I will develop the ability to take a deep breath, and just deal with it. In school I learned to perform well in a scheduled manner: the exams and classes are scheduled, if one follows the syllabus nothing bad is ever going to happen. At work there are no schedules, one minute I could be feeling like this is the day I re-deem my confidence, next minute I realize that I didn’t achieve 100% of whatever my boss wants me to do, despite clear instructions.
Anyhow, to myself in job-search from earlier posts: life did not get easier for me, I still feel suffocated from time to time. But the happy times and freedom from spending my own salaries and living alone somehow balanced it out.
I also encountered people at work who might share different views from me, which I thought I was well prepared by attending one of the most radical universities on this planet. I am trying to not let the differences get to me, and to be honest my colleagues are some of the nicest people I’ve ever met. Hopefully one day I can truly learn what “live and let live” means. It’s just really difficult now because I am (sort of) getting rid of the importance I put on some of the ideas I received from Berkeley. Maybe I need to set them aside for a while, or maybe that part of me has to shine from a different angle. In any cases, having relationships with people outside of campuses is also complicated.
At the very least I am slowly adapting to a new stage of my life. I don’t want to say good bye to who I was as a student, and my studying skills came handy in preparation for the CPA exam. But for now, amidst all the confusion, I don’t try to seek immediate answers anymore. Maybe the answer comes years later, and all I can do now is to record the confusion.