Beating Deadlines and Completing Deliverables

You wake up when everyone's still asleep, and you finally sleep when everyone's fast asleep.

Is this how you describe your typical workday?

You get up, brush your teeth and take a bath. You pick the set of suit you will wear for the day; little did you know that you have forgotten the most important meal of the day. You commute, you experience traffic. When you see the time that it is nearing the report time (in my case, 9:00AM), you run to your workstation as if you're running for your last lap and reaching for the finish line.

And if someone would ask a beauty-pageant question of how you will describe your workday in five words, you'll probably say:

My day is full of beating deadlines and completing deliverables.

After all the work for the day has been done (in my case, 6PM), you wait for the rush-hour to subside; but most of the times you battle with it. You commute, you experience traffic. You go home and eat a sumptuous dinner, you prepare yourself for the bedtime and finally you sleep.

And if, worst case scenario, the day ends but still your work is not yet done for the day, you let your fingers run in the keyboard like Cinderella running as soon as the midnight clock strikes.

As of the moment I am hoping that I can do the first one; except that I am having another evening activity to attend to, losing some hours of beauty sleep. Good thing that the beauty-pageant question was not asked for the day, since today I have no deliverables whatsoever, and my deadline is next week. Hurray for extended deadlines!
Given that I have no deliverables to submit and no deadlines to beat, I was tasked to cut letters. They are needed as designs for our team’s bulletin board. Currently, my team’s bulletin board is the cleanest – it is literally empty. No information whatsoever. The Big Boss is coming and he likes immediate updates.

Thus, I am cutting letters. I am cutting letters that would not only complete, but also market the name of our team.

Just so you know, I belong to a company that renders financial services from the other side of the world - an "Offshored Financial Services". From a newly-formed elite team to meet the onshore counterparts and to learn the ins and outs of the “floor” of production, we stayed in the City of London for three and a half months, hoping that we will successfully carry the learning home, with no issues to encounter (and if there is one, we will be able to solve it).

We were informed that once we are home, we are on our own – applying whatever we learn in addressing the issues we do not really “deserve” to earn. Days passed and month-end starts, the hours of our job extended more that what we are allowed to work. Sometimes the peak of production lets us experience the joke called “double-shifts”. I was able to experience that kind of joke – going to work while everyone’s asleep, and coming home when everyone’s already asleep.

Continuously immersing yourself in this kind of cycle, you start to ask the following questions:
 Is it always like this?
 When will it stop?
 Am I happy?

Or even asking the bottom-line: Do all these make sense?

Seriously speaking, at some point in my new workplace experience I asked that bottom-line. Even I was living in one of the greatest city of the world, training with one of the best trainers (no bluffing!), I wasn’t enjoying my work. I was totally an alien to the systems of the Bank, its rules and regulations, and how all these fit together. From my enhanced skills of evaluating government projects and assessing sovereign debts, the function of controlling the financials and ensuring front-to-back performance left my skills brought down to zero.

Self-esteem low, Anxiety high.

So for the three-and-half months of training and studying the learning in the City of London, most of those days are a bit depressing. I used all my savings roaming around United Kingdom as form of my escape – looking for a sanctuary.
All the while I was roaming around Northern Ireland, crossing the horrendous Carrick-a-rede rope bridge, this struck me:

Someday, it will all make sense. And all of this comes from experience.

Believe me, as you go along in this cycle of what you think at first is a non-sense, there will come at time that you think clearly, and you will realize that every step that you make each day is a new experience. Whatever we encounter, there is a bit where we learn from it. And earning the learning from the experience is PRICELESS. Time goes on and it is within you if you want to savour it or put it into waste. Believe – this is a powerful thing. And little did you know that this powerful thing will change you – completing those numerous puzzle pieces into a wonderful landscape.

I know that you may want to make a difference, and you want to see something. Little did you know that whatever you want to make or see lies within you. All you have to do is close your eyes and believe.

Err, yeah, this is my second feature column shown in the Official Publication of our Student Organization in my Graduate School. And this deserves a separate post from my other social networking sites. This is how I am so energetic in sharing sentiments in life, unlike my previous write-ups that only contains love, being in love and loveless.

The first one is missing, I have to look for it first before I may be able to do a post to #Fossilize it.

Too busy to write inspirational pieces, I'm afraid. I'm too engrossed to learn Law and to study its subdivided subjects. Too busy to read fiction because of my review for the comprehensive exams and preparing my thesis write-up. Too busy mentioning I'm too busy in this blog. Oh no, redundundundancy again and again. Could you repeat it again?

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