Monday, 28 May 2012

I'm certain as a lost dog pondering a signpost

Well its been an eventful couple of weeks all told what with more Costello gigs and my new job.

The first crack in my upward path was last Tuesday when my boss said he wanted a word. I was in good spirits and tbh I thought he was going to offer me a full time contract. Pride comes before a fall etc

He said that he felt that I was struggling, making too many mistakes and not cut out for the role so that was that. We'd talk again in a week but it was pretty much a done deal. I was shell shocked, I hardly took any of it in. It really hit me when I was driving home and I cried my heart out. It was as if all the things that I believed about myself in my darkest moments were true. And in big letters above all was the word FAILURE. I really didn't want to see anyone I knew as I thought they would just see the disappointment I was.

I had a couple of Costello gigs to look forward to in London (see next blog entry) and I did something that I would never have done 6 months ago. I sat down and wrote my boss an email. I had to get these thoughts out of my head, to express myself in a way I had not been able to as I was so overwhelmed.

This is some of what I wrote

---I just thought I would express a few things that I feel I didn't have a chance or was able to say yesterday. As you might have noticed I thought that I was increasingly getting more confident and at ease with the office system and producing the admin material correctly and so our discussion yesterday came as something of a shock. I thought I had ironed out my initial jitters and stumbles, that first Monday was a bit of a blur if I’m honest, and was learning well.

As you can tell, having this job means a lot to me. Just this short trial period has increased my confidence and reinvigorated me. So even, if you decide, that we can go no further I really appreciate the opportunity you have given me. The things that I have learnt and experience gained are invaluable and I only hope that you appreciate that I did what i thought was right at all times. I enjoyed my time with the company these past 6 days and found the work interesting.

I don’t expect a response to this but just wanted you to appreciate some of these things for when we speak next week -----
So that was it.

next morning after the first Costello RAH gig I picked up the phone and it was my Boss asking if I'd like to come back to work. When I got there he asked me if I had written that email which I said I had he said that he admired my commitment and passion and would take me back on til the end of the month as long as I "upped my game", which I had readily admitted I needed to.

Well that day went OK but today i made a couple of stupid, silly mistakes. they weren't big things - a wrong phone number here, a misspelt name there but enough to just rattle my confidence. I felt under pressure from my own perfectionism. So I sat down with my boss toward the end of the day and said that I thought I was wasting his time. We had a chat and he asked if there was anything I'd like to tell him that he could help me with.

So I told him about my panic attacks. I explained a little and it turns out he has a relative who has just completed a doctorate in psychology, he didn't toss me out of the office, or castigate me for not telling him these things at interview. He assured me that the mistakes that I made were little things and that I should just stay calm and be a little more organised. He felt that I had been treading on eggshells and nervous cos I was "on trial". And so as far as he was concerned that was over. he would be offering me a temporary 6 month contact on Thursday.

However we both agreed that I had to be sure that i wanted and could cope with the job. He'd rather I told him tomorrow if I don't want to do it than about a weeks tiem when there won't be time to get someone else in the role.

And I want to do it, I really do, I mean its a job ffs and it could lead to bigger things. He's taking a risk despite everything and giving me the opportunity to prove to myself that I can do this

So thats why I am, a little lost, confused, keen not to let anyone down and in need of advice and \or  a good kick up the arse



  1. You can do it. You calmly, reasonably, but passionately, told your boss why and how you can do it. And the good thing is he listened, which a lot of bosses don't. You should be proud of yourself, fella. You're never going to hear your favourite song if you don't spin that wheel in the first place* (<---tortuous Elvis Costello analogy).

  2. You can TOTALLY do it!!! You learned more about the job, and yourself, in that first week than many people do in a year! You owe it to yourself to do this and you will be GREAT. Everyone makes mistakes - the important thing is to learn from them and not do them again. Or try not to, anyway! Go over things twice, three times, as many times as necessary and take it steadily. It sounds as though you have found the perfect position with the perfect, understanding boss. So GO FOR IT!!