New Experiences & Old Pains

I have a job that I like. The people are awesome, the tasks are interesting and exciting, and I feel like there is plenty of opportunities for me to grow professionally. Not to mention that it’s much better than the previous (short-lived) job I had, and a very good improvement over my first job. I’ve been given the opportunity to work here, and I don’t want to lose it.

And, I think, for most of my short time here, I have not been able to escape this anxious feeling that I am not doing enough. I realize that some of it is because until I pass around the six-month mark, and I finally feel secure, I will always be wondering if I’m actually filling the shows. Six months, I think, is about when I stop myself from thinking this is all a mistake, and I will be given the boot.

But while some of it is that fear that someone, somewhere, made a mistake, there is something more worrying happening: I see the gap of what I could be doing, and what I’m actually doing, and I feel myself lacking.

I’ve told myself that I felt like my short stint at my previous job broke me. Too many things felt wrong and I developed some bad habits as a way to make it through the day. So, while I was on the treadmill from my first job working remote, I fell off it on the second, and now I need to get back on it.

Being on the treadmill isn’t easy, you see, but I know I can do it. It takes time. If I saw myself get better at it over time, knowing that it’ll be a matter of time until I get up to speed, it’d be okay. It’s not great knowing you used to do better, but at least I could get my head down and keep on trying.

What I’m frustrated by is that getting on the treadmill is so tough. It feels like a constant battle with myself just to approach it. I try to trick myself, and it sometimes works, but I can tell that it’s only a temporary victory. I try to work from somewhere else in the house, and it works (despite some technical issues that come with it), but I can see that it will, eventually, stop working. Could maybe working from an office, with the pressure to at least pretend I’m working, help to do what I must? Probably. At this point, I’m open to the idea.

What I do know, however, is that I want to do a good job, live up to my own expectations and the standards of the team, and that I shouldn’t need to fight myself to do something I want.

And I know, there are plenty of suggestions and tricks to do a better job at that fight. I shouldn’t need to. If I want to do something, it’s not crazy to think that, barring some survival instinct or moral quandary, I shouldn’t just do it. But that’s not what happens internally, and I’m not sure it ever did.

University was an ebb and flow between taking advantage of classes where possible and the stress of cramming and all-nighters because finals were coming. If I go back far enough, the only time it hasn’t been like this was back when I still studied along with mom. She’d sit us down every day to do our homework and study if need be, and things were a breeze back then. But I certainly wasn’t the one setting the pace – I’d only keep it because I knew there wouldn’t be an escape from it. I’d have to do it, and I couldn’t run from it.

And I insist. Surely that isn’t where it should end. Surely, it stands to reason that if I want to do something, I could just do it. I’m not even talking about keeping at it or being good at it. Oh, no. I’m merely talking about getting on the treadmill and saying “I’m doing this” and then doing it.

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