I have been in my current position for right around 2.5 months. During that time I have had the opportunity to meet some pretty amazing and brilliant people; many of whom have invited me into their homes and made me feel welcome. Tonight I was asked to go out for drinks with one of my new friends, Roger. Roger and I have worked on a few projects but never really spent any time away from work together. I didn’t have any plans for the evening so I decided to take him up on his offer. We went to Lennie’s and each ordered a pint of stout. To our astonishment, the waitress came back with not only two pint glasses but an overflowing pitcher of beautiful dark brown beer. She informed us that they were running a special and it would be cheaper to order a pitcher than to have a pint each. Who am I to tell a waitress not to save me money or give me more beer than I ordered. I digress…
Roger and I chatted for 2 hours. We talked about everything except work. He and I share many work related interests but they didn’t really come up in conversation. Anyone who knows me understands what a feat it is for me to not talk about work. Jess often says that I don’t have an off switch and more times than not, she is right. Tonight was different though. We both needed time to wind down and just talk about the things we were passionate about. We have both been doing a lot of personal reflection lately; something I seldom take the time to do. It made me start thinking about what matters most to me. Am I taking the time to meet my goals? Do I even have goals?
What I realized is that I spend a lot of time making sure I am doing what are considered the “right” things. The things that will progress my career, that will keep me employed and that others see as valuable. What I don’t do is figure out what I think are the right things. I need to be better at defining my personal priorities over my professional priorities. If done correctly, my personal priorities will drive my professional priorities.
I really enjoy what I do. I enjoy working with amazing and brilliant people and up until now that has been enough to drive me to where I am today. What I realized today is that I need to figure out where I want to take myself. It is time to be selfish and determine what I think is best for me and what I want to do. That is not to say that I am on the wrong path (trust me, I really enjoy what I am doing). I just need to make sure I am blazing the trail and not just following the path laid out before me.