Friday, February 08, 2008

Jumping Off the Cliff

I did something yesterday that I have spent a long time thinking about. I think anyone who knows me and anyone who has been reading this blog for a while knows how much my job has been troubling me. I'm not going to go over the gory details again, since there are a good many things that I can't talk about publicly. Being in banking brings with it many policies and regulations, including very strict ones about confidentiality.
The expectations of this job have been extremely hard for me to fulfill. Organizing this particular staff has been like trying to wrangle cats, or discipline teenagers. I haven't been enjoying that. The multiple meetings and business calls and business functions are wearing me out. I'm not particularly extroverted. I am very talkative and open with my friends and family, but that's completely different. The audits and warnings and probations have been terrifying and exhausting. I haven't been sleeping. I haven't been keeping in touch with friends and family who deserve far better than that (hi, guys, sorry 'bout that). I can't have a day off without anxiety and a sense of foreboding and horror about having to go back.

I finally decided that being unemployed was a better alternative to destroying myself for a job I obviously didn't like. I'm not a quitter and I hate to lose, but I've given this position a chance for four months. I couldn't do it any longer.

Yesterday afternoon I called and asked if I could meet with my boss and her boss. The three of us sat down, and discussed it. I told them I didn't think I was the person for the job. I told them I wasn't going to change who I was to fit the ideal of what they wanted. I told them that I appreciated the chance they gave me to try, but that I had made a mistake. I told them that I had been with the bank for over three years and I didn't want to leave, but I saw no point in continuing down this path. I reminded them of all that I have to offer and how well I had done everything asked of me and more during those previous three years. I was surprisingly calm and I think I made all my points effectively. While I was telling them all of this, a sense of calm came over me that I have not felt in quite a long time. They asked me a lot of questions, which I expected. It went far better than I had imagined.

I'm not sure exactly when during the conference I realized it, but this did not end up the way I thought it would. I figured out that not only were they being quite understanding, but they had apparently been expecting me to say this to them eventually and had already thought about it. What they had been thinking about was not how soon they could get rid of me, but where else they could put me. They want me to stay. They don't want me in a position that I'm this unhappy with. I'm stunned. And pleased. And very, very relieved. I think I might actually be able to relax this weekend.


Beth said...

Good for you! I know how stressed out you were about this job. I hope your new position is much more enjoyable for you.

Take some time this weekend to relax.

Heather said...

Thanks, it's been a long time since I've felt this relieved. Nothing will change right away, since there isn't really anywhere for me to go right away, but I'm guessing that the light at the end of the tunnel will make it easier.

Are you ready for the Red Sox Swap? Can't wait to get my match!

Kate said...

nice job. and brave of you. i'm glad they listened well, and i'm glad they realize it would be silly to just let you fly the coop. i'll remember this next time i feel the overwhelming urge to say NO.

jess said...

Wow! Congrats!
I hope I can find the nerve and relief when i finally 'say my piece'.