Flash Feelings: Regret

I talk about a panic attack over joining a new job.

On 26th June, I started a new job – my first major, contractual employment actually. In the past few months, I have written about a few aspects of my employment – the anticipation and excitement, the edginess over waiting etc. Now that I’ve joined, I can write about the other side of the fence.

So far, it hasn’t been good. I have to admit I was biased when I started, because I wanted to be thrown into work – that tends to happen when you’re doing nothing for 3 months, but instead I went through a series of (un/necessary) orientation programmes. I’m still in a general training boot camp, and I effectively start working next week. Whatever it is, at one time I was nursing a feeling of regret at taking up a job. Why? Possible reasons are below:

Primarily, a subconscious sense of betrayal, perhaps – I was expecting work and I get put right back in a classroom environment. While that environment is familiar and comfortable, I wasn’t exactly looking for comfort. I’d had that for 3 months of unemployment/vacation. Extending that betrayal to the fact that I was also expecting a full team of seniors and peers here jostling and ribbing me and maybe telling me to get them coffee or something. 😛 Instead, I find that I’m part of an international team, and I’m the only member here. :/ You might think that my situation is pretty favourable and that my preferences are askew, but again, it’s only about what I (think I) wanted and what I received.

Then, there was the panic attack. Last week, on 8th July, 2014, I came home from work at approximately 6:30 PM and was so tired that I fell asleep immediately. I woke up at 9 PM and I  remembered that I have to tend to the small mountain of e-mail that I had, and that I was supposed to read some long material I had been sent. What followed was a burst of anxiety I had very rarely experienced before. I came out of my room to sit in the living room, and was very fidgety and disturbed. I would get up to walk around and go into rooms and come back out, eventually bringing my laptop out to start on the mail. I turned to my roommate and close friend Paritosh and said, “I think I’m having a panic attack.” He sat next to me and didn’t say anything, but fended off other roommates when they came asking. Obviously at the time I was very noticeable. I don’t remember much, probably because it’s been a week since the time (wow, already?). I do remember sifting through and deleting most of the unnecessary notification mail.

I was panicking because I felt like I had trapped myself in a corporate timeframe where I would never be able to find time to engage myself in personal projects. I hate sitting still or not doing anything, and because of that I do various things to feel good – cooking, reading, drawing, WRITING -and that time I had been worrying about not writing for this blog. I already tend to over-think, and at that time I was in hyper-drive. Looking back now, I can draw parallels with two other instances of me feeling extreme anxiety. I could address those in a separate post. Also looking back, even though I wanted Paritosh to help me directly, he probably did the right thing – he created a wide corral around me and let me fume and vent my energies.

The next day, I compensated like I do best. I thought up a personal project and executed it. I got Paritosh to stand and pose for a few photos and then I Photoshopped them together, adding effects here and there and creating a sort of Two-face (from Batman).

Paritosh two-face
Click to Enlarge

What do you think? It was incredibly satisfying to make and took me about 3 hours. 😀 The regret and/or panic I felt was only a flash feeling and will probably pass over time. I’ve only begun this new phase of my life and I guess it’s natural to be wary. Do you have any advice on dealing with a corporate life? Please tell me below in the comments. 🙂 If you want, you can read more of my stuff in my Library. Thank you for reading! 🙂