Friday, February 4, 2011

Today's fortune: February 4, 2011

Today's fortune: Modify your thinking to handle new situations.

Sorry I'm late tonight, folks. I was at a birthday dinner for my oldest friend, Garrett.

Garrett and I have known each other since first grade. And tonight, I made him feel old. The fact that he was turning 31 didn't seem to affect him, but in the inscription to the book I gave him as a gift (Pearl S. Buck's "The Good Earth"), I wrote that we had known each other for a quarter of a century.

"That can't be right," Garrett said.

Oh, it's right my friend. Happy birthday, buddy.

As far as writing about fortunes goes, this is an easy one.

The widget-making process is complex and challenging, especially since sometimes you gotta use a scalpel, and sometimes you gotta use a sledgehammer. I'm learning new things all the time, and every day I come across situations I have no idea how to handle. My next-desk neighbor, Micah, is probably sick of the sound of my chair rolling over toward him, because he knows a question is coming.

But those questions are becoming more rare and less stupid.

Today, as my fortune was telling me to modify my thinking, I turned a corner at work.

A whole lot of widgets came across my desk today, some of which I completed from start to finish, others I just made slight modifications to. But I was able to handle everything quickly and efficiently, or at least more quickly and efficiently.

It's funny, too, because I think my breakthrough today really does represent a major change in the way I think about my job. I can't really explain it, other than to say things seem a lot more automatic now. I'm fumbling around looking for answers a lot less, and I'm switching between tasks more easily. Sometimes I can simultaneously wield the sledgehammer in one hand and the scalpel in the other.

I think I'll be able to look back on this as the day I became a Real Widget Maker, as opposed to just a widget-maker-in-training.

In March, a new crop of widget makers will join the team, and I will no longer be "the new guy." By then, everybody says, I'll be an old pro, and I'll be the one getting tired of the sound of a rolling office chair.


  1. I don't know how much I actively modified my thinking, but my thinking did change today with regard to a new situation. Lately, I've been doing a lot of blank staring at "al-gibberish." That's "algebra" for most of you. To me, might as well be Sanskrit. But I finally came across a section today that I understood, and competently completed the homework on it. I actually squeeled with joy and relief when I was done!