activism, advice, career, community, everyone is gay, kristin russo, lgbt, lgbt advice, work, workplace
"I am starting a new job that I’m really excited about! But I’m also terrified of beginning at a new place!!!!!! What do you guys do to calm your nerves? Hep meh!"
- Question submitted by Anonymous
If you watch COSMOS, you’ll realize that we are all pointless and no one will remember us and you’ll feel a lot better. OH, or you’ll have an existential crisis and stay home because nothing matters. GOOD LUCK.
Here is the real deal with me – I feel the exact same way. I spent so much time standing against walls reminding myself to breathe deeply. More recently I’ve started feeling a little more comfortable (still not totally there) and I’ve come up with lists of questions in my head to ask new people. The fact that I have this list is like mY SAVING GRACE. Find that for yourself, find the one thing you can hang onto in your brain that will help you feel some stability in this new and scary situation.
New jobs in general are terrifying. You feel like the new kid at school. No one knows you, they all have inside jokes already, everyone knows when and where to sit at lunch and IT’S SO DIFFICULT TO FEEL COMFORTABLE. BUUUUt the cool thing is, people are expecting you. People are stoked that you’re starting this job, they expect to meet someone new, they’re preparing small talk, AND ON TOP OF ALL OF THIS, they want to help you. People LOVE to help out the new kid, it makes them feel cool and smart. So ask for help, ask where the bathroom is, ask where everyone gets lunch, ask how long they’ve been working with your company, ask ask ask. People love to talk about things that they inherently know the answers to (i.e. we love to talk about OURSELVES).
You can totally do this, you’re gonna do great. They are already stoked to have you on board.
CONGRATS THIS IS SO EXCITING!
New jobs kind of make me feel like the first day of school — all of a sudden you get to sharpen your pencils and take out your new Trapper Keeper (IM OLD) and be like HELLO MY NAME IS KRISTIN AND TODAY IS THE FIRST DAY OF THE REST OF MY LIFE.
I am probably going to sharpen some pencils after answering you to see if I can at least get a contact high.
Annnnnyywaaayyyy. My approach is kind of similar, but also markedly different from Dannielle’s. Even though I can be a very talkative human in many situations, starting a new job or a new anything in a new place usually makes me get a little quiet… and I think that’s totally okay. My MO has been much more to say hello and be friendly, and then keep to myself and let the new friendships and relationships evolve over time.
Also by “keep to myself” I don’t mean stand in the corner and not look up. I just mean that if I go into the shared work kitchen and someone else is in there, I’d say ‘Good Morning!’ and then let them take the lead. If they say, ‘Good Morning, how are you today?’ then voila, you can reply with however you’re feeling… and be honest! ‘I’m good, a little nervous about all the new things, but super excited!’ If they just reply with ‘Good Morning,’ then I think it’s totally ok (and great) to get your coffee and return to your desk (or wherever you work, I DON’T KNOW YOU).
Remember that you are (most likely) going to be at this job for awhile. There’s no race to gather up all the work-friends and no race to let them know that you are f*cking awesome (which you are). You just be you – and if that means you’re a little quiet at first, that is NOT a turn-off.
Breathe, and be patient as things evolve. Don’t get discouraged if the first week passes and you still feel a little off-balance — it takes time to get in your groove in a new environment.
YOU TOTALLY GOT THIS.
Everyone Is Gay has started a new project to help parents who have LGBTQ kids: Check out The Parents Project!