More than just a job
Some people think that work is just a way to earn a living. Show up, do what’s required, and collect a pay cheque. It may sound simple enough, but think of how many hours you spend at work. If you’re working full time it’s at least a third of your life that you’re spending in an office or in a factory. The time shouldn’t feel like a drag, work should be a good place to spend your time, and here’s the thing, it’s up to you!
Starting a new job can feel a bit like buying a new pair of shoes. When you see them in the shop you’re all excited and when you finally have them in the bag it feels great. But the first time you wear them out you realise that they as comfortable as when you tried them on in the shop and you start to wonder if you did the right thing buying them. It’s very similar in a new job, it takes time to adapt. A bit like wearing in a new pair of shoes, they take time to feel comfortable, but in the end it’s so worth it!
Yes it’s normal
In a new job, know that it’s normal to have some doubts. You’re in a new environment, working with new people that don’t know you at all. They don’t all know about your previous work experience or the depth of your knowledge, so when they ask a question, just answer it honestly, whether you know the correct answer or not.
Similarly, if you feel like you’ve been thrown in the deep end and are really overwhelmed, approach your supervisor or manager and ask for help. It’s not a weakness to do so. Explain to them what you know and where you’re getting stuck. It could be that they assumed you knew how things were done simply because they’re so familiar with everything and they forget it’s all new to you. Most of the time managers will appreciate you asking for help rather than bumbling along not knowing if what you’re doing is right - or discovering it is wrong months down the line.
It’s also normal to feel out of place. Of course it will, everything’s new. The thing is it’s up to you to change how you feel. Reach out to colleagues, start conversations and get to know them. You may find you have a lot in common even outside of work. And smile, even when you don’t feel like it. A smile will draw people to you and make them more open to chatting to you. A friendly face is far less intimidating – and believe it or not a new person at work can be intimidating to those that have been there a while.
More than work
In your work let your passion for what you’re doing shine through. If you’re in a junior role then your enthusiasm can open up opportunities for further learning, training and promotions. If you’re in a leadership position that passion will make an impact on your team, earning their respect and getting them to work with you as you seek to grow the business.
If you’re having a bad day, let it just be that – one bad day, and know that tomorrow is another opportunity to put your all into what you do. Work to make the most of where you are now, and you’ll find yourself settling in sooner than you expect. It really is up to you, your positive attitude may make a difference that goes beyond just you. Perhaps soon you can get your new colleagues smiling too!