Under Pressure

I admit that twice at work I almost burst into tears at my desk.

The first time was due to personal drama that came out of left field and upset me to the point I took refuge in my favourite Japanese restaurant. Unagi and sake are the next best thing to a shoulder to cry on. Rather than make a scene, I left the office promptly at lunch, ate, drank and sniffled into a napkin and then came back able to work. I don’t do emotional displays at the workplace though my ex-colleagues do know that when I’ve reached point break, I scare even my boss.

The second time, I was buckling under the strain of three accounts. Trying to do followups on one account, finish prepping for another account’s event the next morning and then a third account suddenly demanding attention NOW NOW NOW.

I was stressed to the point I could barely function. The thing is: I can be easily distracted but once I focus on something, I tune everything out and focus on it with laser intensity.

It’s a whole different ballgame from when I was an editor. My job was sorted with a tasklist and each task had priority queues. The tasks would be done in order and by priority. I would also make it clear that someone’s priority might not be mine and if he had issues with it…suck it up.

So now I have to be a bit more flexible and determine just how to manage all the things on my plate.

My line manager gave me advice: “Sometimes, it’s better to overcommunicate rather than not say enough.”

I have to be more clear about what I’m doing and what I need to get done. Even if someone wants something now, I’ll just have to justify why now is really not possible.

Another friend of mine is doing his best to play mentor. He told me “Just understand that rather than hand in a piece of crap work to meet a deadline, make sure you give in your best work even if it takes more time.”

Now, more than ever, I’m glad I have good people in my life who will take the time to listen to my woes and help me address my foibles.

Hopefully the next week will be better. I like my role. I love my colleagues. I just hate feeling lost, inadequate and rushed.

Time to find my own tempo instead of crying when I can’t hear the beat.

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