I’ve been joking about having a quarter life crisis since I was 20, but I guess 25 is the “official” quarter-life crisis legitimacy age, assuming 100 is the year we would live to on average. I just Googled it, the average U.S. age lives to a lifespan of 79 years old, apparently a whole four years longer than it was about 30 years ago.
Weather and Season:
For some reason, it seems like fall condensed in the past week- the landscapes exploded into colors of orange, yellow, and red, soon swept to dead leaves in the wind, and finally left the trees in our yard 90% barren. We went from 70 degrees two weeks ago to 40s this week, with bouts of rainfall scattered throughout the days.
On Friday, it was not a fun day. I was not feeling it, with the dark skies and rain, and I was tired from driving down to Princeton for a UX/UI lecture the night before (more on that later). The new list I was working on was also more complex and annoying – there were more factors to consider and change in the system, and none of it was as efficient and straightforward as it should be. I have a vague idea of the role I took on at this job, but I feel like more than anything, I was hired to research and figure out all the arbitrary conditions in this process without having been properly trained. Someone from another department messaged me, asking me to look into something I had done two months ago to an account. For comparison, I work through about 2000-3000 accounts per week on average, and when someone messages me on something, I get anxiety on having to understand and defend myself clearly and promptly. I needed to understand more of the background and relationship of what other departments do and how the system functions, in order to be able to defend myself on what I had apparently done and what they were looking at. My quick research led me to believe that I had made an error, and an email was immediately sent out informing others that I had made a mistake. After help from my co-worker, I realized that I had not been wrong in the update I made, and I therefore attempted to explain to my boss why the change had been made. It’s just a crappy feeling, not being sure if you did make the mistake stupidly, or it was some operational error you didn’t even have clarity on. I had apologized many times so far, but out the handful times I had been messaged on my errors, I really believe most of them were due to some of the natural margin of errors that happen when you do a lot of manual work in large amounts of data, and also due to some result I was given that nobody had a concrete idea on how to handle. There was only one time that it was 100% a huge stupid mistake I clearly made. None of my bosses have yelled at me or anything, but it’s this pressure I feel where I want to work hard and I really dislike having anyone accuse me of mistakes. I’m still having doubts about my value and my worth. I’ve learned that it’s important not to apologize, and to always do your best to find out what happened before believing it when someone tells you you made an error.
- The UX/UI event: I had heard about this since the last meetup I attended back in the summer, and didn’t think much about it since. But then I got an email notification and realized that the topic was one I was quite interested in, which includes user accessibility, something that involves improvement for disabled people as well. The user experience should prioritize that demographic as well, so I definitely enjoyed the lecture, which was given by Elizabeth Churchill, the head of the UX/UI team at Google. It was the first time I’d been in this building, which was the one right in front of the Princeton fountain. The auditorium I was in looked similar to the one broadcasted at the UN, and I immediately sat next to a student who had a #builtbygirls sticker on her laptop. I talked to her, and realized that there were obviously many Princeton students as well attending, and it was hard not to feel a bit intimidated since I was suddenly aware of the high amount of intellect in this room. I enjoyed how the speaker broke down the way they researched things at Google, and I definitely agree that a smooth interface is all the difference in whether someone wants to download an app.
- I’ve been researching more online about what courses and topics I could learn more about and be more exposed to. I also have been reading up a lot on job requirements, particularly those in my town. I feel more certain now on the skills I want to target acquiring at my current job, especially those that are transferable. I need to remind myself when I feel anxious and insecure at my job, that it takes time to pick up on all the nuances of responsibilities, and that even if I lose this job, it’s not the end of the world, and I’m sure I am better off now than I was a year ago regardless. I can only try my best.
Health: I shuffled my Tuesday work schedule two hours later to stop by the SSI office with my dad to figure out what’s going on with the status of my benefits. It always gives me anxiety to go, because one time we had this really mean Indian lady who treated me like a criminal who was taking advantage and lying to her. I put aside two hours for the trip, but thankfully, we talked to one of the front desk ladies and resolved our questions in about 20ish minutes, with probably a 20 minute wait. I left with a pamphlet of information and more clear instructions on how to report my wages, and then realized I could head into work at 11am instead of 12pm. I also ended up going to a deli to talk more with a new guy at work, he’s an interesting character. I also have to figure out some insurance claims I made, and sometimes when I think too hard into things it can be overwhelming. But I’m okay for now.
The good thing is I’ve done so much research, and have a list of notes on what to further look into and learn about now. At least I have a sense of direction on what to gain more experience on. Bloomberg Business magazine is also really informative on world news and trends, so most of my weekend was spent between watching The Americans and reading and researching.