Eventually, there came a time when I had sensed that my manager would lay me off soon, so before he could do so, I resigned and joined my current employer.
It was then that I decided to seek professional help before I land up in depression.
What I learnt from my experience with a Life Coach
Initially, I remember fearing judgement from the Life Coach, but as things unfolded I realised how neutral she really was. Our conversations were independent of personal biases.
For the first time in a long time, I felt cared for. My problems seemed significant enough. I seemed significant enough.
This being more of a team work than a professional telling another professional what they should be doing, there were many takeaways that ultimately helped me turn things around for myself at work.
Food for Thought
Being somebody who was unable to identify “what” was going wrong, my Life Coach helped me understand “why” I might be seeing failure more often than not. This was when I learnt of things I could try and see whether they worked for me.
I used this goal-setting method to set my priorities depending upon their importance (I), and urgency (U). Things seemed easier once I had allotted them to either one of the four boxes in the grid as tasks that were: (i) important and urgent, (ii) important but not urgent, (iii) urgent but not important, and (iv) neither important nor urgent.
Identifying my Strengths & Weaknesses
Knowing my merits and setbacks helped me carve out a better plan of action for myself. I knew the areas that needed improvement, and the places where my stakes of acing things were higher. This served as a great strategy in my quest to grow professionally.
I divided my time for everything I needed to do so that I could rule my workplace. While I would assign a certain number of hours to my work where I would keep social media at bay, there was also time dedicated to its usage, so as to avoid failing this time because of being an extremist.
Formal v/s Informal: know the difference
I learnt the 2 ways of socialising - one that was casual, and the other meant for networking. So far I had been ignoring the differences between the two. Whether it is friends turning into colleagues, or colleagues who become friends, knowing where to draw the line helped me steer clear of controversies and politics.
Growth beyond tasks
My life coach also helped me realise how change is the only constant. Our job roles and requirements keep evolving over time, which is why I began looking at ways to update my knowledge and skill sets - be it through seminars, conferences, or workshops. Over time, I became an eternal learner.
Initiative and Criticism
Both of these had important roleplays in me jeopardising my first job. It was now that I knew the importance of taking initiative, as well as being open to receiving criticism. How we perceive feedback can truly determine what we choose to do about it, and this time, I chose to view it positively, and initiate improvement whenever I could. This worked wonders for me, to be honest!
An important but overlooked aspect of succeeding at work is not overdoing anything. I began to draw limits to my work and spend some quality time with myself - whether it is listening to music, lying down and giving my ceiling a blank stare, or pursuing a hobby for that matter. Variety is the way to avoid boredom and saturation, is what I learnt.
I would readily admit that these things were easier said than done. It took me some time to get accustomed to consciously investing my efforts towards my betterment. The end results however is absolutely worth it! I am an achiever, and I look forward to keeping it this way. :-)