Monday, February 8, 2016

Personal Insight: When Not To Invest

This may not be the job I want. I feel like I’m losing my engineering skills by not being able to do the engineering drawing or FEA that I specialized in at University and used for years at my previous jobs. Or even doing hands on work directly in the field like I feel an engineer should. I feel under appreciated and like nothing I do here is good enough. Like everything I do is generally brushed off, what I say isn’t taken as relevant, and my skills don’t matter.

I’m not sure anything I do makes a difference here.

This has always been incredibly important to me. Making a difference. Maybe I should worry about this less. I’ll take the time I have to advance myself as much as I can and try to remove my personal needs from what I can expect from this job. Accept that this isn’t a place that I can advance how I’d like.

Do as best as possible, earn my money, so that I can enjoy the rest of my life elsewhere. There’s a whole world that I can enjoy that isn’t the 9-10 hours that I work a day.

I tend to emotionally invest myself in everything I do. I need to stop emotionally investing in this job. My self-worth should not be dependent on this place that isn’t allowing me to accomplish the goals & expectations I want to achieve.

I don’t even realize I’m doing it.  It wasn’t as difficult at previous jobs. I had a distinct separation of work personality and home personality. A very clear delineation. I left home at the door and my personality cut off.  

With therapy I’ve worked to stop disassociating. Reincorporating myself into every moment. Sometimes it sucks. This job is actively friendlier than past jobs. My boss specifically hires people based on their personality (and skills) to create a friendly environment. I’ve never been so social with coworkers. I could never maintain a strict, completely leave your personal life/personality at the door policy here. It would be seen as cold and rude. That doesn’t mean I don’t tell anyone anything about me that’s personal. Not at all. Just the things that make me relatable (my geeky hobbies, my love of Star Wars, my obsession with 80’s movies especially bad b-horror – stuff like that). But all of that stuff is part of who I am, it makes it harder to distance myself from this place, makes it harder to shield myself from the disappointment that comes with not living up to what I had hoped this job would be. Or take every perceived criticism to heart.

Not every job can be a dream job. There are billions of people in the world that simply go to work and get paid so they can pay their bills and do other things. Maybe that’s all this job is.

I can invest my time, and my effort, but not myself. Not everything deserves a part of me. There’s something to be said about cultivating impersonal detachment. Which is not the same thing as involuntary disassociation.

I’m sensing a theme lately. Taking things too personally. Letting things affect me too much. Correction, letting the wrong things affect me too much. I should look more into how to work on this…


  1. I've struggled with what sounds like a similar feeling towards work. I've blamed it on a lot of stuff - crappy bosses, shitty co-workers, so on and so forth. In some cases it was even objectively true. But what ever the reason, I never seemed to get past a few years into a job without hitting that wall. (one of the reasons I like project based work)

    In my case there are/were a couple of things going on. Probably the first thing I should own, is I like to be the center of attention - if I'm not in the middle of the big stuff, I feel insignificant and uncomfortable.

    But beyond that, and maybe more important, is my need for novelty. Once a job become repetitive and without a greater goal to achieve, I lose interest. It's when I lose interest that I start thinking, "this ain't for me." I can always find a way to get eyes back on me - as I've gotten older, I've gotten better at doing it without being too much of an asshole, but that's about as much growth as I can claim. However, once I feel like I've learned what I want to know about a topic and I've said what I need to say about it, I'm done. I need to move on - or at least that's as good as I've been able to do.

  2. i'v enjoyed reading ur updates & was a bit sad that Feb '16 is the lastest one...i'm hoping u've navigated the shifting dynamics of work, relationships & personal growth w/ as much honesty, risk & rewards as u have in the recent past!


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