We oftentimes take things for granted.
Let’s take our colleagues for instance. Even though they aren’t ‘things’ per se, we do take them for granted. When do we realize this? Usually when it’s too late.
I admit we all have our fair share of weird colleagues to deal with, but there are always a few or sometimes even just one, you can connect with and fall back on. Ever wonder what you would do without that one person who you vent out to when your boss snubs at you? Or who you would go to when the evil colleague says something nasty about your new handbag? Or even who you would share lunch with? We often don’t realize it, but we create some very strong bonds with our colleagues. How does that happen, and more importantly when does that happen?
When you start a new job, you often enter an environment where you feel vulnerable. You feel like you’ve entered a place where people have already formed bonds with each other and there is no room for you. But, almost 99% of the times this changes. You begin to realize that the environment that seemed so intimidating once, is actually divided into sub groups and each group has certain insecurities or differences to deal with. With each passing day, you make space for yourself and become part of one of those sub groups. If you’re lucky, one or two people who are similar to you may leave their comfort zones and adopt you. You then become part of a new group and feel confident, loved and stronger than ever before.
So, if you look back and think over the transition, who do you have to thank for helping you fit in? Would you be as comfortable as you are today without that one colleague who’s been your punching bag, your gossip girl, your confidante, your adviser, supporter, and friend?
I have always filed people into neat little boxes; friends in one box, cousins in another box, colleagues in another, etc. When one of us is finally leaving, I’ve realized that over the years my colleague has become more than just a person I spent my office hours with. She no longer fits in the colleagues’ box, but eases right into the friends category. All the times I’ve confided in her, shared “OMG I’m totally judging SYZ colleague” moments with her, gossiped about other people with her, shared family troubles, and even gone out on shopping sprees with her, have morphed into unforgettable memories.
I’m just glad that I had a friend in the workplace all this time, because she made my experience colorful and left never a dull moment! I know that I took her for granted all this time, but I do realize now how much she helped me deal with my successes and failures, and with other difficult colleagues.
So, Miss Colleague, I am not taking you for granted anymore. 🙂