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Posts tagged ‘work’

Shame

So I usually find myself writing/rambling when my feelings are all over the place. I guess this is one of those times.

I got the results from my second sitting of the actuarial exams yesterday. I passed one and I failed one. Let me clarify that; I, Aliya Khalid, who has never really failed anything before, failed an exam. So this whole thing has been a rather novel experience.

I’m fairly accepting that I failed this exam. I knew it was borderline and I have a hundred excuses to justify it but the honest truth is, I should have prepared more. No, the part I was worried about was how my parents would react. I must have asked them a dozen times:

‘How would you react if I failed an exam?’

‘Yeah but you didn’t.’

‘But what if I did?’

And now, this was my great opportunity to find out.

I thought it was my mum I should worry about and that my dad would take it on my chin. I couldn’t be more wrong if I tried (I must be really off my game).

My mum was perfect; the poster ad for supportive parent. It’ll be fine; you were busy at work; we went to the wedding in Scotland days before your exam; you can sit it later; this won’t hold you back; it’ll be fine. And I thought great- what was I worrying about- now I just need to tell my dad.

Do you know what he said?

‘I’m so disappointed.’

It was like being doused with cold water.

Disappointed? I haven’t put a foot wrong (academically) like ever and the ONE TIME that I mess up a little bit, I’m a disappointment. That’s fucking great.

He topped it off with ‘so all your other friends passed that exam? What went wrong with you? Why did you sit the exam if you weren’t ready? Oh so over 50% of the people who took the exam passed- that makes it
worse.’

I feel furious and hurt and more than a little betrayed. It is easy to be on someone’s side when things are going well but it is a mark of character to stay on their side when things aren’t.

I never expected that from my dad in a million years.

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! 

Just Aliya Things 2

So I like to listen to music at work; more specifically I have no filter with regards to what songs I listen to. In fact the more inappropriate the better. I dunno, I just seem to get a kick out it. It may look like I’m building a spreadsheet on the outside but actually I’m having a  private party in my head screaming SHOTS SHOTS SHOTS SHOTS SHOTS SHOTS.  

This occasionally has adverse consequences. For example a few days ago someone approached me at my desk and I hastily took off my headphones but didn’t have time to mute. Unfortunately that was the exact moment Nicki Minaj ‘Only’ started to play. If you’re not familiar with the opening lines, let me enlighten you *ahem*

Yo

I never f*cked Wayne

I never f*cked Drake

All my life man – f*cks sake

If I did I’d ménage with them 

And let them eat my a** like a cupcake

These are some inspired lyrics but probably not something I’d want my colleague to hear. I’m privately optimistic that he’s deaf. 

Sorting Out My Face 

So I took this whole week off work (much needed I assure you) because I felt like it. I was able to restart my blog, catch up on sleep, chill with the parents, watch movies, read fanfiction, sleep super late and stuff my face whenever I pleased. Unfortunately I have to go back to work tomorrow. 

Don’t get me wrong. I like my job but that doesn’t mean I’m not gonna moan about going back…

It doesn’t help that I totally let myself go his week (and the few weeks before) and I kinda feel like I should look decent upon my return. Unfortunately getting myself into a decent state and actually sorting out my face is a longer process than you’d think. So long in fact that I need to mentally prepare myself beforehand.

I had to:

  1. Scrub every inch of my copper smelling body and dust filled hair (due to renovation work next door). I felt 10 kilos lighter  after my bath/exorcism. 
  2. Sort out my underarms. I look forward to be able to lift them freely. 
  3. Wax off my moustache and sideburns. 
  4. Shave my legs even though no one will see them. 
  5. Use a facial scrub to remove the layer of grime on my face. 

This takes hours and hours. How do some women look flawless 24 7?Where do they find the time? Where do they find the energy? Just how?!

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.