How do you know you are where you’re supposed to be? Do you get restless in your career or wonder if you’re on the right path. Worse: Do you wonder if the path you’re on is a dead end or a stalemate? Have you ever made a career move that felt like a step down then wondered if you made the right choice? Do you ever worry about job security with the constant advances in technology and automation?
Recent reflecting and the change I mentioned working on led me to a decision that shows how I’ve learned to not act on impulse so much but rather to think things through first. Journaling (the good old-fashioned hand-written type) helped me work my way through the decision process that almost turned out differently.
Two Weeks of Thought
On February 26 I wrote about how light work was and how I’ve had to search for work to do in other areas. The words “I’m not leaving” were among the many I wrote that day.
On March 1 a little birdie mentioned an opening in a department I used to work in, a department that is always busy and is consistently growing to keep up with demand. Changes have been made in that department, and the opening was in an area that was largely not responsible for answering phones and more dedicated to finding, preventing, and eliminating fraud (my passion when I worked in that department before). I was intrigued and fascinated by the new tool they had to aid them in their task and wanted to learn more. The wheels were set in motion immediately … TOO immediately.
True to form, I got ahead of myself and was standing on one foot at the edge of a cliff. Oh, the journaling that ensued!
I like numbers! They are exact. There’s no guessing. There are some judgment calls to be made and plenty of puzzles to solve. I like puzzles. This is what I do in my current department.
I DON’T like talking on the phone. I especially don’t like talking to angry people on the phone. Phones would definitely be involved – sometimes none, sometimes many calls in a day (2 is many to me!).
A schedule change would be necessary. I may have been OK with working Sunday – Wednesday (10-hour days), but I’ve grown quite fond of my Tuesday – Friday schedule.
Stress bleeds into personal life. This is what ended up happening the last time I worked in this other department. The call that would inevitably come in at 5:59:59 when my day was scheduled to end at 6:00 would keep me at work an extra 15-45 minutes; sometimes longer. Trying to complete numerous tasks while worrying that the phone would ring and interrupt me and then jumping out of my skin when it did ring, heart racing as I answered not knowing if there would be an angry person on the other end blaming everything on us, not willing to accept that they made a terrible mistake. Of course, I took each and every one of these calls to heart. I left that behind almost ten months ago when I switched to a different department and haven’t missed it one bit!
That March 1 entry ended with
“Even if they decide not to take me back, this has put me through some deep thinking. Insightful.”
As I read back over entries between March 1 and March 12, I found many points of uncertainty, second-guessing myself, and even fear. THAT’S IT! Decision made.
On March 13 I decided that I don’t want to make that change. I want to continue to learn and grow where I am, adding responsibilities as they become available. I’m good at what I do. I feel comfortable at the end of the day that I did a good job. I know that whatever I didn’t finish by my scheduled end time can and will wait for me or one of my teammates to continue where I left off the next day.
Moral of the Story
Before making a leap of faith, step back and think it through. List the pros and cons. If you don’t know what they are, do some research to find out. Some people call it praying and relying on God to guide them. Some people call it being practical and logical. Whatever you call it, it’s still exercising your brain. Just do it! Be smart. Be informed. Make good choices!
I’m confident that I made a good choice!