Friday, December 12, 2014

The Learning Curve

This past Monday marked the first day of a brand new job for me. I say "brand new" because I've had new jobs before, but prior to this I had essentially been moving around within the same organization. I started as a student in one department, came back the next summer and stayed for 2 years as a student in another, took off to Halifax for the summer after I convocated from university, and then got brought back into yet another department where I stayed for just over 2 years as a casual and then finally a term. I only ever had to get used to a new job, not really to new people and definitely not to a new atmosphere.

I've only been at this job for five days, so I have to keep reminding myself to be patient. I'm not used to not knowing what is going on, if I'm being completely honest. This is a completely new industry to me, so I'm not well-versed in the topic areas, nor am I familiar with the vernacular. I am not familiar with the company culture or the expectations, and even though I'm pretty technologically-savvy, I'm still not completely familiar with the updated versions of programs that this company has compared to where I was before. I'm in the middle of a learning curve, and it's taking a lot of my brain capacity to keep from curling into a ball in the corner while covering my eyes and wishing I was at home in my bed watching the seasons of Gilmore Girls (#grownup).

I know I can do it, and I know I will do well. I must admit that the first day left me feeling like a complete idiot for agreeing to do this, but after that initial shock I realized that it's not just the position that is new for me, it's having to learn at such a rapid pace again that's a shock as well.

It's not just the work that's new and challenging, it's all the other things too. Soon I will conquer the touchy water fountain that doesn't seem to like to flow into my water bottle and I will learn how to pull the door with a level of strength somewhere between my weak pull that leaves me caught in-between the door and the frame and my super-human strength maneuvers that knock the wall behind the door. I'll get used to driving the other way to work and parking downtown, and I'll get used to not being able to go home for lunch anymore. I'll learn everyone's names and I'll get to know them too. Over time all of these things will come, just like they have before.

Any tips on how to adjust to a new workplace? Do you have methods to assist in remembering people's names? I am so grateful for name plates on everyone's doors, but I'm not always in their office. Please help!

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