It’s been an amazing week. One not possible without sobriety, and so I’m deeply grateful.
Early in the week I had my annual performance evaluation. You may (or may not!) have read that I’ve had some stress in the old work arena, particularly the last 3 months. It has been an intensely challenging time…one that’s tested me in so many ways. And one that’s made me thank my lucky stars again and again that I didn’t stumble through it drunk. Because even with eyes open, mind clear and willingness to adapt, it was ugly. Honestly I think I could have made several career- and therefore life-damaging moves if I had been drinking. So let’s just say, THANK YOU. THANK GOD. THANK YOU GOD.
Back to my review. I had been feeling (all alone there in my mind, and uncommunicated) that I had done some over-and-above-type work in 2015. I’ve had some project success, and many ideas and initiatives that were fruitful and outside the scope of my objectives. But see, here’s the problem. I have rarely, if ever…okay let’s just say never…stood up for myself in an official situation like that one.
So my boss (who is supportive in the extreme, as noted elsewhere) starts going through stuff and I’m just accepting everything…Within Target, Exceeding Target (nice), Within Target, overall…Within Target.
But instead of saying anything, negotiating anything, or (ahem) actually coming to the meeting prepared to defend my work in any meaningful way, I just said:
I left the meeting feeling like…well, like I had really just let myself down. And the rest of the day I just couldn’t shake it. I wasn’t angry, except maybe at myself. I just kept thinking about how hard I’d worked all year and how I just sort of rolled over in my evaluation.
So, I drafted an email to my boss (again, a bit cowardly). I sat on the email all day. It said everything I wanted to say in the meeting. I admitted I’m just not any good at tooting my own horn. And before I left that day, I clicked Send.
I got an email back, a long one. I could tell my boss wasn’t thrilled. He defended his position. He was mildly defensive. But he didn’t take it out on me. He just challenged me to defend myself, explain why I felt that way.
The next morning he wrote another, more encouraging email, telling me to write down every single contribution I’d made during the year, even if it was an idea that someone else acted on, and detail its impact. Seriously, this took me 2 solid days.
When I met with my boss and we discussed everything, he did change my rating. And we talked about the way I handled it, more like a child than an adult. And how I need to get comfortable with taking credit for my work. How I need to stand up for myself. How I need to work smarter, not harder. How I need to delegate a lot more. How I need to let go, stop carrying everything on my shoulders. Manage my stress. Focus a lot more on myself this year. Take care of myself.
And then, to my great embarrassment, I started crying. And I could not stop. Again my boss was intensely compassionate, present, supportive. He said it made him angry when he got my email because end of year reviews are just challenging in general. And he thought we had been in agreement but we weren’t…and it was frustrating. But then he got over it quickly, and we both learned something, and he’s glad I stood up for myself.
So. Painful, excruciating, dramatic as it was, I did it. I showed up for myself.
And since then, I’ve seen a big shift in my life. I won’t go on and on…but I will say that in spite of all of my ultra corporate posts, I am NOT a corporate robot. 🙂 I never started out to be one, never intended to find myself working for a tech giant in France. I was always an artist, yogi, defender and proclaimer of all things Weird and Anti.
The shift has been nothing short of a magical spark being ignited in my heart. Little by little, in every moment, with every breath I’m moving closer to myself. The True One that’s been hiding for so long.
Today instead of going on a hike with my family, I let my husband take the kids, and I…? I took a bath. I meditated. I moved, I intentionally opened chakras and sang and allowed and I have been, and am and will remain…present.
I have been, for many months now…escaping, avoiding, focusing on the negative about myself.
Today while I was in the kitchen I stopped, looked in the mirror, chose to see the good in myself. A radiant being. A mama with nice eyes and a sweet smile. Who tries hard, who wants the best for everyone around her. I accepted myself. Completely.
I have been crying, trying, working…so HARD to reach this place…for years! And it’s so…interesting to me…that it took something so corporate and material as an annual evaluation to reveal to me… I don’t need to work any harder. I just need to stop. Listen. Be present. Allow. Accept…me.
And I do! O happy day!
Love and light and blessings and all things good to you, but most especially, many many moments like this for you with your beautiful self.
❤ ❤ ❤