I had an epiphany today.
Remember this post? Where I’m all gloom and doom? (It’s okay if you don’t. I block out bad memories too.) Well, I was thinking about that and how I pretty much feel the exact same as I did then. So after work tonight, I sat in front of my computer and typed out a full-page, single spaced letter to my boss about all of my frustrations. I needed to write it at all out, just to get it organized in my own head so that when I sit down to talk to him, I don’t just blather on like a whiney idiot. I want to have well thought out points and proposed solutions. (e.g. I’m unhappy, here’s why I’m unhappy, and here’s how I think we can fix it.) I’m nothing if not practical. Once I finished writing, I sat there and stared at my page of words and jumbled thoughts. What the hell did I just write? It was a mess. Even I didn’t know what I was talking about. What a waste of time.
“Why can’t my boss just automatically know all this work I’m doing? I’ve been busting my ass for weeks now, and no one seems to notice but me. What does it take to get a “great job!” around here?”
And that’s when it hit me. The overwhelming urge to just grab a red pen and write across my letter “I JUST WANT A HUG!” (Okay, maybe not a REAL hug, but bear with me. I have a point.) It’s not the amount of work, the type of work, or anything at all to do with the actual work that’s making me unhappy. I’ve tried to blame my negativity on all of those things these last couple of weeks, but the truth is, I just crave a little positive reinforcement. I want to feel valued. I’ve been working in a silo for at least a month, working harder than I ever have before, with no one to tell me how I’ve been doing, good or bad. And that’s frustrating.
I’m a little embarrassed that something so seemingly insignificant has the power to impact my entire outlook on a project, but, there it is. And I just realized it. Today. After weeks of bitching and moaning and not really understanding why. And I’m telling you this because it honestly took me WEEKS to figure out that’s what’s wrong. And I’m sure I’m not the only one. But I know exactly what it will take to make me feel better.
So now my next question is, how do I get my boss to tell me I’m awesome without me telling him to tell me I’m awesome? (This is assuming of course that I am actually doing a good job, and hopefully not dropping balls and generally sucking.)