Thursday, June 30, 2011

Today's fortune: June 30, 2011

Today's fortune: Don't be afraid to take that big step.

I did take a big step today. But unfortunately it was a step backwards.

I made a huge mistake at work. The kind of mistake they warn you about in training. The kind of mistake that gets you a formal reprimand.

The kind of mistake that if it happens again I lose my job.

I feel stupid and embarrassed and frustrated right now.

The real killer is the error itself was relatively small. I mis-read a document. Instead of seeing a "15," I saw a "50." But the effects of that error are, in the widget-making business, devastating.

The emotions I'm experiencing are not necessarily rational, but they're very real. I feel like I let my team, my supervisor, my managers and my company down. I feel like I let my wife down. I certainly let myself down. I'm worried that any progress I've made in the job has been taken away, and any positive impression on those I've made above me is completely gone. I've never been reprimanded for anything - well, except for the two times I was fired - and it feels awful. Somehow, this is worse than getting fired.

But I know it's irrational. I know this was just a mistake and everybody makes 'em. I just happened to make the one mistake that mustn't be made.

For my own sanity, I'm going to forget about it as best as I can. I'll go to work tomorrow and do my job like I always have. I'll pay extra close attention to avoid future mistakes. I'll act like a man, suck it up and hold fast.

Let's end this fortune on a positive note. Here's a big step forward: the dog Jamie rescued earlier in the year is still in the happy home we found for him, and doing better than ever. I received a text from Barney's new owner today, who wanted to give us a status update. Barney has even learned a few tricks and, apparently, is the proud owner of a really cute sweater.

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