This is the dialogue that often goes on internally when I make a mistake at work. I moved on to pastures new at the start of October in terms of my career and I am currently working within a post that requires me to have excellent attention to detail. You can only begin to imagine the horror I went through when I realised that:
a) I sent an email that mirrored the above text and
b) instead of putting £300,000,000 into the report I put £300000. It frustrated me so much that I ended up sobbing on the shoulder of my other half profusely as the report was to be submitted to the all important ‘Programme Board’. And what frustrated me even further wasn’t so much my mistake but his nonchalant, blasé response after I relayed animatedly how my day unfolded; just as I delivered my all important punch line, he responded (after a two second pause that felt like an eternity) with ‘Is that it?? It’s hardly the end of the world Ola. Big deal; get over it.’ I could have smacked him right then and there in the face if my mother hadn’t taught me any better. How dare he diminish my annoyance and quench my anger?! How dare he chuckle at something that in the grand scheme of things is not that big of a deal??! How dare he make me look on the bright side??! How dare he?! How DARE he??!! (Gosh. I can be so dramatic)
And after I finished wiping my tears (now I understand the metaphor cry me a river) I realised that his statement was simple but yet so efficacious…I say this because if you are like me (I hope I’m not alone on this matter…HA!) then agonising over small mistakes does nothing to change the situation firstly and secondly, when you look at it in the grand scheme of things, it is not that big of a deal!!
And as I would later discover (thank you Stylist; must give credit where it is due) this tends to be a trait that is mostly prevalent amongst women. Albeit it is important to care about your work and to tend to it like you would your hair but being super meticulous can also be a hindrance!! I mean who wants to spend 10 minutes reading one email over and over again before hitting ‘send’?! It’s exhausting!!
At the first Something Borrowed event, (this is the women’s career network that I launched last month; separate blog post in its entirety!) I was extremely empowered by all the women that spoke but in particular by what Marian Malone relayed:
‘There will be setbacks; that’s life. If you have a setback, talk about it, learn from your experience and get over it. Keep looking forward. Don’t let yourself become a victim.’
Selah (Pause and think about that) A word is enough for the wise. Everyone makes mistakes so you are not alone! Learn from it, build a bridge and get over it!! (she says in angst) Until the next time beautiful people…xxx