a new year, a new leaf

It’s been a while since either Sean or I have written on this blog. It’s kind of hard to say why. Our lives have continued on. I know we’ve had lots to write about. We just haven’t, for one reason or another.
Work has continued to be consuming for me, which honestly isn’t new news to anyone who has talked to me since about June of last year. As the new year has started, though, I have approached work from a new angle and turned over a new leaf with my attitude towards my coworkers. I have approached each one of my coworkers with a clean slate to work on, in hopes that perhaps this year will be more rewarding than last.
Last year, I struggled with my new position. Not only was it a new position for me, but also a new position as a whole with my software team. As a result, we all struggled to find where I fit into the grand scheme of our development effort. 10 months later, now that everyone’s determined that I’m not going to quit easily (including myself) and that I apparently don’t go crazy too easily, things are starting to go smoother.
I’m getting the hang of the documentation process that I have to go through for every test I conduct. I’m making friends with all the people necessary in order for this job to go smoother. Baked good bribery is never out of the question. (Note to anyone trying to butter someone up: Lemon pound cake is always a winner. That and chocolate chip cookies.) I’m also getting to know our customer better. I understand their processes better and I understand their expectations better. They have also become living, breathing people to me, too, instead of this nebulous idea of people booming demands down upon us. I can make most of them laugh or at least crack a smile. I also am getting to know when all they want is the honest truth and when they just want to hear what they want to hear.
Don’t get me wrong. I’ve already had a day or two of coming home and being ready to break down because I don’t think I’ll get things done on time, or I’m running into this or that problem with either a coworker or the stupid processes that we have to follow. Somehow, though, it’s all gotten done so far. I’m resolving my problems or I’m finally taking them to my boss and asking him to fix them. That’s his job. I do my job and whatever is out of that scope, I go to him for.
That’s the part that I’m learning most of all. I’m learning that I can’t do everything myself. I spend so much of my effort trying to be independent and do everything myself that I sometimes forget that I can ask for help. It nearly killed me last year. If Christmas break had not come when it did, I would have either come within a hair’s breath or actually had a nervous breakdown. Instead, I got a week to take a breath, actually get some things done around the house, and get a new perspective on life and work and how they meld. We’ll see how things progress over this year.

Now that I’ve managed to be introspective for a little while, there’s a pile of paperwork sitting next to me that needs to be filtered through and I need to figure out what I’m going to pack for Denver next week. Here’s to hoping that it at least won’t snow on me.