Here’s the thing about Being 24. Every day, you’re still young enough to wake up all bright-eyed and ambitious, certain you can take on any challenge presented to you. You are smart! And newly educated! You’re stylish! And live in the City! And have a great boyfriend! And love your job!
Your life is full of exclamation points, before you roll out of bed. And then The Day gets ahold of you, and if it gets to you before Glorious Coffee, good luck with that. The Day just womps you, and womps you, and womps you. You’re reminded of all the things you have to do, and you divide those things into two categories: Things I Don’t Have Enough Time For and Things I Don’t Have Enough Smarts For.
Half the people in your life will blindly cheer you on, telling you that everything you’re doing is GREAT! And you’re totally AWESOME! And you should be SO PROUD! The other half are there, snickering quietly off to the side, reminding you that you’re always on the verge of messing something up.
The first group of people– even if, maybe, they’re not familiar with the intimate details of how you are sometimes the Queen of Awful– make everything possible. The getting back up again when life lays you out, the reminding yourself that you do love the cats (even if the Big One keeps eating non-edible items and the Little One proved with alarming acuity that she can disembowel an entire roll of toilet paper in under ten minutes), it’s all possible when your mother reminds you that she loves you even if your hair is being weird, and when your boyfriend kisses your forehead and eats the burnt dinner because, hey, he likes burnt garlic best, anyway.
The second group of people… Well, that’s where Mastering It comes in.
For two weeks now, I’ve been studying Corporate and Organizational Communications. My Masters’ degree. I’ve learned that this new job is going to be, more than anything else, challenging. I have to reprogram a lot of habits I have when it comes to my interpersonal communication skills. I can’t be reactive. I have to stay neutral. I have to be diplomatic, and balance The Company against My Staff, and keep everyone’s respective needs in mind.
I have to step outside my comfort zone. I have to embrace these new challenges.
… I have to Master It.
I’m on my way.
Better stand tall when they’re calling you out. Don’t bend, don’t break, Baby, don’t back down.