I really like my job most of the time. How do I define liking it? I enjoy the majority of the people I work with, and the things I get to do. I believe in my company’s mission, and I generally laugh fairly hard at least three times a day. Plus, all I have to do to look at my current position favorably is to reflect on the first job I had after graduating from college, where I would arrive each day and just sit sadly in my car in the parking lot, thinking about how desperately I didn’t want to enter the building. Not just because I worked next to a jail and was terrified of being taken hostage by an escaped inmate, but because I hated everything about that position.
So…yeah. It’s fair to say I like my job. But then, there are those days. Those days where my job and I are no longer on good terms and we begin resenting each other and being high maintenance.
Today? It was one of those days.
So naturally I felt my best option was to call my boss from the airport and proceed to whine, complain, lament and throw an overall pity party. I said lots of angry-young-professional types of things in my most mature voice, like, “I don’t think I’m adding value” and “I don’t understand why people are so rude sometimes.” Really digging deep on my feelings here in case you couldn’t tell.
Anyway, I was completely on the defensive, anticipating he would respond with some canned motivational advice to reassure me. But instead, he totally threw me for a loop. You know how in cheesy fight scenes in 80s movies, someone throws a punch and instead of blocking it, the other person grabs his arm and pulls it forward, totally gaining the upper hand? Well my boss did the professional equivalent of this over the phone, essentially becoming a mentor ninja.
Instead of just trying to make me feel better, he acknowledged that sometimes, no matter how advanced our jobs are and where our careers take us, we all occasionally have dumb, annoying and pointless days. We’re asked to do ridiculous things and sometimes the people we interact with are jerks.
It’s great to get reassurance when you hit a low, and it’s even better to realize you’re being a complete baby with no real reason to complain. Because then you can shrug off your bad mood and enjoy TCBY while sitting on the floor of the airport in dress clothes (because you need to charge your iPhone and the only free power outlet is by a utility closet).
I am fortunate to have a really, really good boss. Lord knows I would never want to manage me, and I certainly wouldn’t want to manage a whole gaggle of millennial females, that sounds heinous. This situation made me realize three things:
1. Things are never as bad as they seem in the heat of the moment. Once you get a chance to vent or eat processed sugar, it’s usually not such a big deal.
2. Smart males know not to always give advice, and that just listening and validating the feelings of an enraged female is the key to success and ending an annoying phone call.
3. I’m lucky to have a job. Really lucky to have one I like. And super lucky to be learning and engaged almost all of the time. No job will be perfect, and many people would kill to do what I do.
4. The meaningful quote I heard today that turned my whole day around, the grass isn’t greener on the other side, it’s greener where you water it, is apparently from a Justin Bieber song, and that is gross.