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avril 2008

Actionné par LiveJournal.com
N is for Neville

Oola! Go to Verk!

The alternate title to this entry should be: or, Issues to Work Out With My Yet-To-Be Hired Therapist

So I'm having somewhat of a quarter-life crisis, as we all do. And the most recent manifestation of this crisis has to do with my job and my many conflicting feelings surrounding it.

Two or so years ago when the Job Talks started up, people kept saying to me "Why don't you go work at the Magazine? They love you there!" And I'd sort of cringe and respond "Yes, but I just don't know if that's where I want to be. I want to  branch out. And the company is so small. And I'm afraid of getting stuck there." But as the reality of the employment hunt came into focus, it seemed like a better and better idea. So I shot off an email, and got an offer in response. And now here I am.

It's hard for me to make this coherent, because I have such a wide range of feelings about my job. I love my immediate boss. But I have lost a lot of respect for my Big Boss, due to certain decisions he made back in September, and the increasingly clear signs that he is somewhat of a cheapskate. I enjoy the focus of the Magazine, but it's not my biggest passion.  The work is interesting a lot of the time-- and I get a lot more responsibility and credit for my work than I would at a comparable job with a bigger publication. And yet it's been a while since I felt enthused about what I'm doing.

About a month ago I was "moted" to a straight editorial job, a decision on the part of both my bosses that I'm incredibly grateful for. I'm almost certain had they not been willing to shift me over I would have lost my original position. And while the swtich has been very good for me, and, I hope for the company--I'm able to assist my boss in a much more direct manner that my old position didn't allow, I'm working in a field that in which I have a lot of familiarity, in a role that suits me much better also in terms of the amount of responsibility I'm given--but I can't help but be haunted by the fact that I'm in this job because I failed to do the old one adequately. That they hired me for the original position based on my prior performance, and I let them down.

Now, the caveat: I will absolutely accept my own shortcomings in my prior job; however, many of the major issues that led to my switch were not ones I had much control over. Namely: design flaws in the Website that contributed to a drop in traffic (in place before I arrived) and essential sections of the site incomplete (webmaster's domain). In my current state of mind, it's easy for me to place all the blame on myself, though I know that this is not the case (and my bosses have also explicitly said that they know this as well).

But they hired my replacement today. A person much better suited for the job-- she's in her mid to late twenties, has been writing for the web for years, and the blog she created was ultimately picked up by AOL.  She doesn't have all the tech knowledge we need, but she has enough to make her pretty much an ideal candidate for the job. She wrote an email after she accepted the job that was forwarded to me, in which she described herself as a workaholic, someone who will dedicate herself entirely to her new job, who is much more than a "40 hour a week clock-watcher." She is motivated, she knows the subject like the back of her hand, and I am totally threatened by her.

I have never been that driven of a person. I've never worked much beyond what I needed to do well. I've rarely pushed myself. It's something I don't seem capable of doing, especially not in the last year or so, and that worries me. Because I care about this job, and I have a relationship with the people who work here, and yet even before I started work in June I was thinking "Well, I'll only be here for a few years at the most."

When I applied for this job, it was because I knew I had enjoyed working there and had done well, but also because I was too depressed to really attempt a real job hunt. Honestly, I only applied for one other position that I was fairly certain I wouldn't get. And while things are better for me emotionally than they were, I'm still not 100 percent, and I've found myself in a job that I should be throwing myself into when what would really suit my headspace is a mindless dredge job that I could fuck up and not lose any sleep over. I find myself wishing I were waitressing or working as a receptionist, so that I wouldn't feel the pressure to perform beyond what was needed. To show that I have a passion.

I wonder if I'll ever be able to find the passion needed to really excel at any job, whether it's this poisition, or grad school, or something else altogether. I don't like feeling like I've let people down, but I'm not sure if I have what it takes to truly redeem myself.


dearest, in typical us fashion, you are overthinking and making things worse for yourself. its your first job - who the fuck cares if the focus of the magazine isnt what youre most passionate about? youre catastrophizing a silly situation. youre really the only person i know who has a job right now thats even remotely related to the FIELD they want to work in. its the first year out of college, relax :) you and i know that youre not - despite your own best efforts to convince yourself otherwise - the kind of person who sits back and lets everything drift by. youre threatened by the workaholic techie girl? good, you probably should be, even though her email was probably a load of shit. now use that energy to make positive, not negative changes in your own mindset and life.
You are wise, and thank you for that cross-continental whack upside the head:) To clarify though, my main issue is not with the job itself, which I do mostly enjoy and appreciate. It's that in spite of this, I don't seem to have that "energy" you wrote about. Meh. Anyway. Am watching trippy, awesome Lost and appreciating cutie-pie Dominic. And now I'm sobbing because Of Montreal sold their souls to Outback Steakhouse in the form of a jingle. I hope Kevin Barnes was at least wearing a mini skirt while he recorded it.