Welcome to the inside of my head.

Posts tagged ‘London’

Promotions and Bonuses

Yes yes I know I haven’t been posting everyday. I am a terrible person. 

In other news I got my promotion this week which was nice. It’s the first time I’ve ever experienced something like this; I wasn’t sure how much of my emotions to show to my manager…. Is it okay to jump up and down wildly and hug him? Probably not. 

An added bonus was the performance rating I received. I got a 5/5 which means that I far exceeded my targets. Obviously I’m well chuffed with that. Working life is kinda weird in that respect- I find it very difficult to guage how well I’m doing… And it’s always reassuring to hear that people don’t hate you and that you’re doing alright and stuff. 

That’s another thing- people don’t often say things like ‘well done’ or ‘I like the way you tackled that’ or ‘I appreciate the amount of time and effort you spent on this’. I can’t speak for others but I really need to hear things like that. I dunno if that make me needy. But it’s gives me reassurance and it motivates to be better. I feel like small genuine comments would make the workplace a better place, don’t you think? 

Over and out! 

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163. Lies At Work

Now that I’ve been working for 10 months and being a real adult and that, I feel it is time to share some common lies at the office. leggo

What they say: This should take about an hour.
The reality: This will take at least two hours

What they say: Hey, do you have time to job a quick job for me?
The reality: You’re doing this job for me. And chances are it’s not quick.

What they say: While I’m here, I’d like to talk to you about xyz.
The reality: I came here to take to you about xyz.

What they say: Oh, you’re leaving at 5? Good for you.
The reality: You must not have enough work to do. Let me rectify that.

What they say: Thank you for sending that over. Could you also provide xyz?
The reality: I couldn’t care less what you just sent over because it was not what I wanted. Send me what I want dammit.  

What they say: Oh you did that quickly!
The reality: You must have done something wrong.

What they say: I just made a few changes.
The reality: I changed fucking everything.

What they say: Please let me know if you have any questions.
The reality: For the love of god please don’t ask me anything.

What they say: I’d like to request leave on xyz.
The reality: I don’t care what you say. I’m going. This email is a formality.

What they say: Hey how’s that piece of work coming along?
The reality: I wanted it 2 hours ago. What is taking so long?

What they say: What’s your capacity like?
The reality: I have some work for you.

What they say: Hey how’s it going?
The reality: I have some work for you.

What they say: Did you have a good weekend?
The reality: I have some work for you.

See a trend here?

Over and Out!

162. Graduation

I did it- I graduated! I survived four years of attending lectures, frying my brain over mathematical theory and stressing over exams and you know what, I’m damn proud. Some people think a degree is just a glorified piece of paper and whilst that statement is not completely inaccurate, for me it feels like something I earned.

Graduation has felt like something a long time coming. Imperial really make you wait; I was done in June but the ceremony was in October. What’s weirder is that I’m working now and don’t feel like a student any more. Going back to uni felt like walking into a previous life, like I was retracing old footsteps and reliving memories. It just goes to show how quickly we move on. But it was totally worth it. The venue, the Royal Albert Hall (a stone’s throw from Imperial), is just spectacular. How many people can boast of such a fine graduation setting?! And it was lovely to see everyone again and hear what they’ve all been up to #reunion.

The day itself was pretty manic- a mad dash from one place to another. Get to uni. Get the gown. Get some informal pictures. Get some official pictures. Attend the ceremony. Attend the reception. Keep track of my family members at all times (very difficult btw when one person needs the loo, someone else wants to wander around the campus and someone else wants to get food). I’m so glad I bought a change of shoes because I really was running around like a headless chicken.

As for who attended; my proud parents of course (who were literally beaming all day), my cousin Mele whose graduation I attended a few months ago and my aunty who came especially from France. It really felt like a family affair which is exactly how I wanted it to be.

Because I was super eager I bought my dress months in advance which turned out to be a very good decision because I seriously don’t have time to shop these days. I found the dress online (from Next) and I think I fell in love with it on sight. It is ivory colour (shutup that’s not the same as white) with embroidery on it and it’s just so well made and a very flattering shape. Better yet it was friggin 65% off. Hell yeah.

But enough chit chat, here are some photos.

 

And if you’re really interested, here’s a video. Skip to 52:20 . Notice my stupid wave to the camera, immortalised forever on YouTube. But hey at least I didn’t stack it.

161. Working Life: The Sucky Truth.

So in that last post where I said I hoped to still keep up with my blog- yeah that didn’t happen. I can only apologise. I’m guilty. I chose sleep over blogging. Disgraceful.

So what the hell have I been doing? The daily grind covers it- the getting up, going to work, commuting home and collapsing in bed routine.

People ask me all the time how my job is going and I smile and say it’s good and that I’m being kept busy.

But here is what I really want to say.

I have caught myself questioning working life a hundred times over the past month.

The first, and it makes me sad to say this is, is this it? Is this what my life is going to be… 40 years of a daily 9-5  (let’s be honest 8.30-6) and catching up on sleep on the weekend. There’s got to be more, surely.

Then there’s WHAT I’m doing. I like that I’m being given responsibility and I’m doing something ‘real’ but I’m basically a glorified Excel person. Spreadsheets and Outlook are my two sidekicks.

Sometimes I feel like such a sellout. I picked such a ‘safe’, ‘stable’ career. I’ve been so busy being realistic about the future that I never sat down to actually ask myself what I wanted to do. I stumbled into this with my eyes closed and my fingers crossed and a mantra that it’ll work out. And you know what, it probably will. I just need to adjust and grab any opportunity to do non-standard stuff. But for now I’m going to moan because I bloody well want to.

I also worry about my time, more specifically the lack of it. What’s the point of earning money if you don’t have time to use it?  I am quickly beginning to realise that there are not enough hours in the day for me to do all the things I want, and this makes me feel bitter. I want to see my family, chat to my friends, keep up to date with all my tv shows, listen to all the new music and spend hours exploring YouTube and WordPress. But I can’t. And I think it sucks.

And the bit that shocks me is that I’m lucky. I can come home and my parents take such good care of me. How do people living alone function? When do they find the time to go food shopping or cook? How do parents drum up the energy to entertain their kids and keep up to date?

The way I see it…if you let it, work will suck you in and take over your life. I need to prioritise what is really important and do enough things in my personal life so that I don’t lose my identity.

I need to remind myself that I am so much more than just an employee.

152. Eeeeeeeeeeeeeeeee

GUYS Guys guys! I got a FIRST! I GOT A FRIGGIN’ FIRST!

During these holidays I employed an avoidance tactic when it came to results. Of course that didn’t stop it popping into my head and making my stomach drop, but each time it did I made a quiet a prayer and pushed it out my mind. I refused to be that person sitting by their computer hitting refresh a hundred times. 

So where was I when I got my results? Tesco. My phone started blowing up. People were posting their results on Facebook and I was just standing in the vegetables aisle gripped by anxiety. I was with my parents at the time but I made a decision not to tell them in case they crashed the car on the way home in their haste. So I played it cool and wandered around the store for the next twenty minutes looking at toothpaste and pasta sauce. 

When I eventually made it home, I trudged up the stairs, turned on my computer and found my hands shaking. Why was I so nervous? Well last year, I was kinda disappointed by my results. I didn’t do as well as I wanted to so I worked my butt off this year to compensate for it. I just wasn’t sure whether I’d done enough. 

I COULD NOT BELIEVE IT when I saw that it said ‘First Class Honours’ next to the degree classification. I think I blinked several times just to check I wasn’t imagining it. I even asked Shakira if that meant a First because I seemed to have lost my handle on the English language.  

Even better I saw that I got a First in every module except one which was off by two marks. On top of that I got a First in my project/ dissertation which blew my mind. Hands down the best set of marks I have ever obtained at university. 

So basically I was standing in my room kinda overwhelmed and on the verge of tears (but I managed to hold it it together). The fun part was telling my parents. I crept downstairs and calmly announced my results. The next thing I know I’m being squished to a within an inch of my life by my mum and we were jumping up and down like crazy people. My dad was much more subdued though I’d say equally pleased. 

So yeh I am pretty darn happy right now and this grin I’m wearing ain’t going nowhere for a while. 

Over and Out!

151. The End of an Era

It been a few weeks since I finished uni for good, finished my full time education for good. Last year I wasn’t ready to leave. This year I am. I have loved Imperial College London. I have never been worked so hard, never had my brain fried so thoroughly, never taken such terrifying exams. At the same time, I have never been so proud of what I’ve achieved or learnt so much so quickly or loved the people around me so fiercely. These four years have been really special.

Despite still living at home, I have experienced independence in a way I had previously not known. My oyster card has been my gateway to London, with which I have mastered the underground. I could sleepwalk my way to Gloucester Road; in fact I probably have…9am lectures are rough.

Anyway I don’t want to gush. The pictures say it better than I could ever describe. *gets out tissues*

 

 

I made a video montage with many more pics which can be viewed here, if you wish to experience the full journey.

Over and Out!

149. Done and Dusted.

I am officially exam free- can I get a HELL YEAH?! Do I have my life back yet though? HELL NO.

Basicallyy I still have my fourth year project to finish off which is kinda like a dissertation but with maths instead of words. This project (and an accompanying presentation on said project) is worth quarter of the year which is A LOT. Additionally if you’re borderline between degree classes like I am, they look at your project marks to help decide which side of the boundary you should be on.

Now I’ve been working on this project on and off from November so I’ve done a fair bit. However I’m not sure if it’s utter bollocks or actually relevant. Mine’s not the most ‘mathematical’ of projects either; it’s more statistical analysis focused. Before you start thinking oooh analysis, let me clarify that it’s more like ‘errrm this mean is higher…oh look low variance’ and other mindless insights rather than meaningful inference.  I kinda feel sorry for my supervisor who has to read this drivel.

As for the exams… I did six of them which is two less than what I did in 1st and 2nd year but it still felt overwhelming. Must be the insane content. How did they go?

The Mastery Paper

This bastard of a paper is reserved for us lucky fourth years to try and distinguish us from the third years. They made us sit an exam where we were given one question from each of the modules we took. Note that even though I study maths which is ‘one subject’, individual modules are vastly different. It was like a five in one exam or more accurately THE MOTHER OF ALL EXAMS. Even worse it was the very first exam. I had zero hope that it would go well- I just wanted to not fail. In the end I had one very good question, two average questions and one piss poor one so I’d say it all averages out to meh.

Algebraic Combinatorics

This is a pure Maths module and by definition, that makes it HARD. You’ve actually got to think in the exam *shock* *horror*. I was terrified going into it because the past papers from the last few years were foul and there were bits of the course that I just didn’t get. However it turned out better than expected. That’s not to say I smacked it. I just had low expectations and it exceeded those.

Time Series

Preparing for this exam felt like preparing for an A-Level Mathematics exam ie. you hit the past papers and you do as many practice questions as possible rather than examine the lecture notes. I had a terrible journey getting into uni that day and although I wasn’t late, it messed up my mental preparation. I was all over the place at the beginning of the exam but luckily I managed to pull myself together and I hope I salvaged it. I *hope*.

Applied Probability

I really liked this course mainly because I really like the lecturer but my god was this module a bitch to revise for. You have to know the lecture notes INSIDE OUT. Every minute detail is examinable and there are so many proofs and methods which you’re expected to know. I felt like I understood the content but I wasn’t sure I could convert that into a good exam mark. Before the exam I did a quick revision session with a dude from my course and I explained some stuff to him and he explained some stuff to me. Both things came up. I could have hugged him.

Statistical Theory

The name of this course is Statistical theory but we knew the exam was all about applying the theory. Due to my timetable I sort of only had 6 days to revise for it properly. The lecture notes were waffle so I just did the papers and hoped for the best. I even learnt definitions on the train on the exam day. It was all very last minute dot com. The exam itself was HARD but I honestly tried so I’m not disappointed. I did everything I could.

Stochastic Simulation

We all got royally screwed over. It was nothing like the past papers. I can’t say it was ‘unfair’ but it was just weird and I didn’t feel like the questions were direct. I could see everyone’s faces in the hall as they flicked through the questions all unanimously thinking ‘what the hell is this?’. It was a pretty bad exam to end on. My only consolation is that I think everyone found it bad so hopefully they’ll sort out the boundaries…

But yeah. That’s that. All done and dusted. I thought I’d have some closure after this or feel like a great burden had been lifted off my shoulders. Instead I felt..nothing and my attention immediately switched to my project. Maybe I’ll feel like celebrating when that’s done?

At least I hope so.

Over and Out!