What happened to the Task Mistress?

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I hardly recognise myself.

A few years ago, I was rather naive about ambition and went about it foolishly – to the point of hurting myself. For instance, I once went on a business trip even though I was ill. I ended up having an operation in a foreign country and really resenting myself for not drawing the line. Then I did it again…

Don’t get me wrong. I want to be the best I can be so I keep pushing my limits on all fronts. Can I get more exposure to this? Can I be better at doing that? How can I be prepared to take on more responsibility in X number of years? I am still ambitious but I’m getting wiser about the way I fight my battles – and believe me, I do fight. I think one thing that’s changed is I know now that I can do whatever I set my mind to. But I don’t need to do “whatever”…

Occasionally, it’s not the perfect time to take a vacation but I take it anyway because I miss spending time with my kids and I want a day off to chill out with them. Sometimes, I need to stop the work I’m doing on my laptop and play a card game with my son. And that’s ok. A few years ago, I would have been irritated by the distractions. I admit that I often think, “I’m blowing that opportunity to shine with the bosses” or “I really wanted to beat that deadline so they can see what a high achiever I am.”

I do shine and beat deadlines often but it’s not the be all and end all. I’ve learnt the hard way that my family don’t care what I do. It doesn’t matter whether I work in a grocery store or clean windows or just stay home. They love me.

In my darkest “career moments”, they were there for me even when others said I was “crap” or “average”.

I will always want to do a great job but I also want to make better, fearless decisions about my life. Like I said, I don’t recognise myself. It’s almost like I grow up overnight.

Happy Valentine’s Day.

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I’d Rather Be Stupid

Sometimes, I have to be confrontational. I really hate doing it. Believe me, I avoid it. But there are times when not confronting someone or some thing would be injustice to yourself. You can get continuously taken for granted or the elephant in the room will live on and on and on.

I usually prefer to live with elephants while being taken for granted. I realise that others may think I’m stupid as a result. There’s just something about causing discomfort in others that bothers me. Sometimes, I even make it seem as if I’m to blame to take the edge off someone else’s shame.

Well, I’ve needed to step up and defend myself a little in recent weeks. It has been awkward for me and I’m sure those involved feel the same. The aftermath is respect even if it’s not restitution. Some people are better at this stuff, telling things as they are and feeling no guilt. Not me. I just want harmony, elephants and all.

How do you feel about confrontation? Is it a cultural thing or personality or upbringing? I sense it may be all of the above. When does no confrontation become damaging?

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