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Recently while having dinner with my old colleague/friend a couple weeks ago, he mentioned how he quit his job at this healthcare startup. He talked about enjoying his time off and getting the chance to relax, do nothing and pretty much reenergize from that startup life. I was so envious as he spoke of this time off and started believing that’s what I need. I asked how he’s able to even do it and of course that one keyword: savings. Granted he’s 55 and married so having money saved up over the years along with a spouse’s income helps him to take advantage of the opportunity to do this.

With how discouraged I’ve been with work, maybe taking a break from work or this job in general will be a good idea…IF I WAS BALLIN’! I have my finances straight, debt gradually disappearing, and money saved, but I’m not going to waste my savings to shoot the shit. It’s the “adult” in me telling me to be responsible. Ugh. Anyways, this job is still relatively new since I haven’t been there for a full year yet. I’ve faced bad but also good challenges at this job and I am at a wonderful opportunity where I am the lead designer. This is my shining moment and that last project really fucked me up. I’m currently transitioning onto a new project and here’s my chance to move on and redeem myself.

I wish I could take sabbatical leave or just easily quit my job and figure out what I want out of this job. I think somewhere down the line I forgot about my goals and lost a bit of my confidence as a designer. With any job there will be struggles, but that project really destroyed me. I’ve dealt with difficult projects and clients in the past especially during the early stages in my career, but damn not like this. In the meantime, I’m diving back into the design community and taking advantage of the resources that’s out there to get me inspired and motivated again.

I’ll be 100% honest. I haven’t done ANY work at all last week. Seriously, throw my laptop at me please. Well I took Thursday as a half day and I took Friday off to get some rest from my recent medical procedure and legit slept all weekend, too. I’m struggling with snapping myself out of this depression. Despite me failing on accomplishing any work, I’ve been taking minor baby steps to help myself crawl out of this hole. I dragged myself out to get basic errands done like grocery shopping and what not. Bought myself some flowers to arrange for my desk at home since I love doing this but also to uplift my attitude a bit.

After getting as much as I can during the day, I went to SF on Friday night to catch up with a friend who is an old colleague from my last team. This guy is has been a great friend as well as a mentor to me and with how I currently feel, it was good timing to meet up over dinner with him. He gave me some really good advice and was very encouraging per usual. I had plans to go see Alina Baraz perform after dinner, but had lots of time to kill. We walked to get some donuts and chatted more. Being in his company was just refreshing and it was comforting to know that I wasn’t the only one in a rut about our design career. When we got our donuts and walked towards the venue I gave him a big hug goodbye. I felt so comforted when we hung out and I really needed that talk and hug.

Going to the Alina Baraz show wasn’t too bad. I had bought these tickets 2 months ago because I really wanted to see her live and I had a feeling I’d feel down when I came back from Boston. However, I got really pissed off because stupid fobs were being loud and obnoxious. This one fobby guy decided to sit right in front of me and blocked my view entirely. I just yelled at him and told him to move the fuck out of the way. Every time I kept trying to record something, this fucker kept getting in my way and I yelled at him again and was like “are you fucking for real?”. I ended up moving because fucking fobs are just inconsiderate as fuck. I seriously hate snobby ass entitled fobs. I know it sounds ignorant, but their mannerisms…SMH! I wouldn’t have to curse anyone out if they had better manners. Anyways, after moving my seat I was finally able to chill and enjoy the concert. It was a good night.

I was going to attempt to do some work over the weekend but I went back into instant vegetable mode. Ugh… Granted I was getting some rest since I was still sore from the medical procedure, I was just extremely unproductive and a mess. Yesterday I finally tried to do some errands, but I really just wanted to go back to bed and stay home. I didn’t want to interact with anyone at all. As the time went by, I was dreading the upcoming work week and having to deal with the shit project that I am still on. I went to bed feeling like I was going to get a lot of crap from whoever for whatever reason. It’s an unsettling feeling.

This morning I took my time to get myself relatively productive. Checked my work email from my phone in bed and cringed every second as it was all loading. One email that stood out was an email from my boss with the subject title “Your Review”. I thought to myself, “FUCK…”. Back in January we had to complete a self-appraisal and this is the time I was expecting to hear something back from my boss, but didn’t realize it’d be this informal. When I opened up the PDF to see my review, I was relieved that it was all good news. I have a few things to improve, but regardless I was happy to see that I’ve been doing well. It definitely put me in a much better mood today after reading that email. However, I’m still struggling with getting into the right state of mind of getting work done. I have my work all laid out, but I just keep staring at the screen aimlessly. I tidied up my room a bit instead, which is the last thing that I should be doing.

With the good news from today, hopefully tonight I’ll be able to get some of that work done.

My job title means a lot to me. It’s what I’ve worked hard for to earn it over the years. Recently there has been a change to people’s job titles at work due to the merger. In my opinion, I think it’s so stupid. Essentially my title went from designer to engineer. For whatever reason, I got so mad and bothered by the change. It still bothers me. Nothing wrong with being an engineer but WHAT THE FUCK? The responsibilities that entails to what an engineer versus a designer is not the same. I design, I don’t fucking build things. It just pisses me off when people are so uneducated and go ahead to assume what I do and it’s a shame that a large corporate company that I work at can’t even understand the difference. I find it really insulting for the credibility that I hold in my skills.

Rant over.

The title of this post is pretty self-explanatory. For quite some time I’ve felt this way about my current job. Don’t get me wrong, I don’t hate it. I’m just bored. I’m eager to want to learn more, to contribute more and to simply be valued. I’m just not really getting any of that. This job is still a huge transition for me. To work even more independently than I ever have as well as adapting to a team and boss that is practically 100% remote. I knew what I was getting myself into when I came on board and this was a challenge that I was ready to take on. I am definitely grateful to have a supportive boss that has so much trust in me and to work with a team filled with really smart and talented people. Sometimes we all feel a bit greedy and selfish and just crave for more.

I’ve felt a bit uninspired and unmotivated due to all of those things so I’m really trying to pick up my own weight and get it together. I’ve been searching for design events to go to, which there’s an abundance of in the Bay Area. Searching and signing up to go is one thing, but to actually show up is another. I’m making it a much more conscious effort to show up and to stop being so antisocial when it comes to these things. As I’ve gotten “older” now, I really don’t care to mingle with others like I used to back in Boston. I used to be a social butterfly and I enjoyed it. Now I feel like that cranky old lady that just wants everyone to fuck off haha.

Last week I went to a design event that was hosted right across the street from my office, so I really couldn’t skip out on that one. But that day I worked from home and wasn’t in the mood. I cringed at the thought of getting ready to go, but did so anyways. Got myself together, grabbed my business cards and just sucked it up. When I got there, it was 5 minutes before the presentation started. I immediately went to the bar and had myself a couple glasses of wine just to put myself at ease. I started chatting with the girl next to me, chatted with a couple people that were standing around waiting to chat with the UX director and to exchange business cards, and I unexpectedly ran into this guy that I went to college with whom I had design classes with. It was an interesting and productive night. I was proud of myself for going and expanding my network.

I think in the back of my mind I’m scared that this won’t last long. Oddly in the first time in my career, I’m lacking a bit of confidence in myself as a designer. I have doubts that I can’t hold my own or to excel to my best potential. Most creatives (and non-creatives) run into this “creative block” and I like to refer to it as a design funk. My goals this year was to attend design events, carry my Fujifilm x100t around more,  and find new cafes to work remotely/read. They’re pretty straight forward goals. For now, I’m trying my best to keep myself as inspired and motivated as I can.

I haven’t had the chance to write a post since work was a shit show before I left, but here’s an update to what I’ve been up to…

My POS manager threw me a goodbye party that I kept saying no to, but the dumb bitch insisted. I honestly didn’t even want to go to my own party, but whatever. Kinda wish I stuck with my instincts on that one because the stupid bitch didn’t even make reservations to the place that our team likes going to AND they weren’t open. I was pissed and embarrassed. No surprise the dumb bitch would do this to me. Luckily there’s many bars close by since we were in the Mission in SF so finding a new spot didn’t take too long. It was a small group of us and even my old boss showed up because the POS invited him. I really didn’t want him to know, but it was good to see him.

Although I wasn’t so thrilled to see the POS. Stupid bitch showed up 2 hours later and no apologies. I was really pissed when I saw her and honestly wanted to smack the shit out of her for doing this. Instead I gave her a dirty look when she got there and I ignored her all night. She hardly spoke to me and I realized she invited my old boss and another previous colleague to the party so she could have someone to talk to. Nonetheless, everyone had a good time as well as I did but seriously what a fucking bitch…

The next day I came into the office to meet with the POS’ manager to share with her my long list of the bullshit that I’ve been dealing with since February. I was already getting choked up coming from a previous meeting and chatting with a colleague. So the moment I met with POS’ manager and closed the door, the water works kicked in. I was very hurt to have to talk about the shit that I’ve had to deal with and didn’t want to be reminded of it all. Her manager was taken back by my list and had no idea all of this was going on. I told her how I was forced out of the company because of the POS and I’ve wanted to just do my job without having any conflict. I sat in there conference room with her talking about the situation and crying for 2 hours straight. I was just so exhausted and wanted to just go home. Her manager hated how I’ll be leaving the company on these terms and plans on talking to POS.

I addressed the key points about POS’ but my biggest concern was the state of the team and how I feel like POS is damaging the team with her own agenda. I told her how I wouldn’t have given my 2 weeks to POS, but I mainly did it for the sake of my team since we’re lacking resources. I told her about how protective and supportive I’ve been towards this team especially since POS can’t even pull her own weight and ‘manage’ properly. Her manager appreciated hearing that from me and told me to not let POS win. It was nice to hear that from her. After our meeting, I emailed her manager my “list” of the dumb shit the stupid bitch has been doing to me…EVERY WEEK. I really hope this asshole gets fired. No one ever deserves to be treated like that. I’m glad the POS’ manager was very understanding and empathetic. She even told me she doesn’t feel like with our conversation that I was badmouthing the POS. I also learned from her that the POS isn’t even thrilled about having to report to her and that they’ve been butting heads. Her manager is nice but is a total hard ass and won’t take no one’s shit even if it’s coming from POS. Sucks to be her…

After speaking with her manager, I went back to my desk to do a little bit of work to wait for the traffic to die down before I head home. As I sat there trying to get myself together, my mom called me and when I picked up she asked if I was okay. She knew I was going to speak with the POS’ manager, but had no clue what time or anything. Talk about motherly instincts. It was comforting and sweet of my mom to call and check on me. I felt relieved and when I had gotten home I treated myself to a simple pho dinner. I just wanted to be comforted in that moment and pho and a long shower did the trick.

My last day was June 24. It was my first time ever coming in on a Friday and it was a total ghost town since most work from home on Fridays. I mainly came into the office because: 1) I was looking for my PS2 Capcom Classics video game, 2) helped my work mom with her portfolio, 3) shoot the shit around the office and to have homemade ice cream made by my work mom and lastly 4) I needed to give back my laptop. It was a very bittersweet day and of course my day wouldn’t be complete without the POS giving me a hard time on my last day. Before I left, my work mom and a couple colleagues that were in the office came by our area to eat some ice cream and hang out. It was nice and I appreciated how supportive and encouraging they were towards me. I know that day my work mom was sad that I’m leaving, so since she had treated me out to lunch I treated her to a manicure and pedicure at this salon across the street. It was the least that I could do since she’s been so supportive of me.

Driving home from SF made me feel sad. I thought about how weird and sad it is that I won’t be working with this team anymore. I’ve met a lot of great people at this company and gained great friends along the way. I remember when I sent out my goodbye email and received such sweet replies minus one with a colleague of mines being the first to respond and calling me a ‘quitter’ haha. I was surprised to people’s reaction with me leaving and I appreciated their kindness. It pains me that I can’t be surrounded by them anymore. Yeah, we’ll keep in touch but I really wished I could’ve stayed. As much as I wanted to stay, they’re happy for my new adventure and just happy to see me happy again. One person on my team asked me on my last day if I feel relieved and to a degree I did, but I felt so numb to everything.

I haven’t cried about leaving up until now. I should be more excited about my new job and maybe once the dust settles there I will be, but for now I’m a little upset and scared. I’ll get over it, but the sadness is kicking in and I just feel so hurt. I’m not crying because of the POS, but because I care so deeply about my work and my team. I was so dedicated to it all and it hurts a lot to not be a part of that journey anymore…

As happy as I am about my new job, I thought I’d feel a bit more relieved after giving my POS manager my 2 week notice. Well, not really. It didn’t really hit me until I sent out my goodbye email to my colleagues this evening. I felt a little sad, but I was still okay…until people started replying to the email. As I was going about the rest of my evening, the replies kept on coming and I just lost it when I got home. The replies that I was getting were quite unexpected for me seeing people’s reactions to my departure. I found myself crying with face into the palm. I feel really heartbroken about leaving. I wish I could bring all of my colleagues with me. They’re all just really good people.

I’ll get over this. For now, it just really hurts and I’m very sad about all of this.

I’ve been aggressively applying to jobs ever since last month when I had completed updating my portfolio and resume. I’ve yet again overworked myself from applying to jobs and trying to make shit happen. It’s been so hard for me to continue biting my tongue at my current job and I’m just very lucky that I’ve had a lot of great and quick turn arounds and feedback from potential employers. I had at least 3-6 calls every week. Last Thursday I had 4 phone interviews. I remember going crazy trying to figure out my availability while looking at my calendar.

Meet Company A. I first spoke with the recruiter from there, then the hiring manager and then a designer. After having a great interviews with them, they had me complete a design challenge. I was kinda nervous since I wasn’t sure what to expect and I’ve never had to do one before. It’s essentially a way for the employer to see how you solve problems. My options was to figure out how to design an ATM for kids or design a texting app for a car dashboard. I opted for the latter. I was essentially up against some other girl and was told that we were similar, but after hearing that I knew how badly I wanted to stand out.

I worked all day last weekend and even up until 4AM. There went my weekend, but I wanted the job badly and plus I wanted to kick this other candidate’s ass with my skills haha. I did a shit ton of research, lots of prototyping, wireframes, visual designs, iconography, created a color palette, typeface selections, etc. I was gonna go crazy from all of the browser tabs that I had opened during my research. I had used InVision to organize this “project” and had things laid out nicely. I was hoping to get feedback from my friend/colleague who I worked very closely with and looked up to him as a mentor during my time at the company, but I was anxious and impatient since he failed to get back to my ASAP. It was due that following Monday and I really needed to send it out. So I just said fuck it and was really nervous and stressed out after I hit send. I had shared it with my team of what my design challenge looked like and they were impressed with how much I managed to churn out in 2 days. I was only suppose to spend 6 hours on this, but nope haha. I got great feedback from them and said that I definitely over delivered, whereas I felt like I didn’t provide enough. I remember panicking and throwing in more sketches to make it look/feel more complete.

After a couple days went by the recruiter finally gave me an update to tell me that the hiring manager and the designer were both impressed by my work. She was gonna give me more updates after meeting with them. While I was playing this waiting game, company B came along and reached out to me. The recruiter from there told me that the hiring manager really liked my portfolio and wanted to speak with me. I had a phone interview set up and it went really well. The next steps would be a 3-4 hour on site interview to meet the team and whatnot. After that they would make their decision. I found out pretty quickly that they really wanted to meet with me so I was in the works of scheduling something with them. As I was trying to schedule something with them I felt guilty in an odd way as I was still waiting for a response from company A. It got super nerve wracking.

When I had submitted my availability to company B, the recruiter from company A called me right afterwards. I thought to myself “FUCK!!!!!!” lol. She asked me if I was meeting with any other companies and whatnot. I was very straight forward and told her how company B is trying to pursue me and it would happen early next week. Instantly she wanted to figure out how to persuade me from meeting with company B.I  mentioned to her how both companies are great and I had felt so conflicted as to which direction to go. I told her how I thought a lot about the pros and cons to each company, but there were too many pros from both companies which made it harder on me. From there we started talking numbers. I gave her a good range and told her what I wanted in order to get me fully onboard. I ended the call with telling her that speaking with her made me feel better and it’ll give me some more time to think about things.

Company B emailed me this morning to reschedule our in person meeting and what’s another available date/time. I ignored the email since Company A said that they will call me in the morning. I think in that moment I realized I need to move forward with Company A if they gave me an offer. After I had dropped off my car to be serviced and getting home this morning, Company A finally called. She went straight into telling me they had an offer for me and I took down notes of what it all entailed. I immediately accepted. I would’ve been the world’s biggest dumbass if I passed up on the offer. I definitely got a bit more than what I asked for, which I really cannot complain. I told her I would gladly accept and how I ignored Company B’s email to reschedule with me. She was really happy and relieved to hear that. She told me how happy the hiring manager would be about the news. She mentioned how even though that other candidate was good, the hiring manager reallyyy wanted me instead. He not only loved my work, but my personality as well and granted I haven’t met any of these people in person lol.

While Company A was telling me the details of my offer, I started tearing up. I was so happy that after all of that hard work I fucking finally made it. No more bullshit, no more micromanaging, no more emotional abuse at work anymore. I felt a huge amount of weight lifted off of my shoulders and it felt awesome. As soon as I got off of the phone I called my mom to share the news. I had spoken to her 30 minutes before Company A called me to wish her a happy birthday and asked if she had received the flowers that I had sent. Calling her back with news about my new job made her extra happy on her special day. That made me tear up even more just because I’ve proven to my parents that I can handle it and there was nothing to worry about. I really kept my word on that one. After speaking with my parents I shared the news with my team since they’ve known about my interview process and job search. I continued passing along the good news to my close friends. They were all happy for me and I am forever grateful for their kindness and support for the hell that I’ve been through the past 5 months at my job.

I immediately thought about when my last day should be and scheduled a meeting with my POS manager’s new boss that she reports to. She pretty much got passed along to another manager that I know who is neutral with me. I immediately emailed her asking to schedule a meeting since I had some “important” things to discuss with her. I plan on sharing the things that my POS manager has said and done to me for the past 5 months. I’ve documented and took down notes of everything. There’s a legit timeline of what this fucking asshole has done to me EVERY WEEK. I don’t care if she gets fired or whatever the fuck happens to her, but I just need to get all of it off of my chest before I leave.

I am still overwhelmed with so much happiness and happy tears, too. It truly has been a struggle in this industry over the years and I’m finally making it. One of my close friends AC that I spoke with today said she admired my dedication that I put into my work and that made me tear up. I am very passionate about what I do. I am at the peak of my career and it really can’t get any better than this. I’m still in shock that I’m going to be making six figures. I can’t wrap my mind around that still. I am grateful for the hiring manager to give me this awesome opportunity. I remember during my phone interview with him I had told him he reminded me a lot of my previous manager that had hired me at my current company. How similar their personalities, values and sense of humor were felt so comforting. I remember that morning was bad because my POS manager said some shitty things to me before my phone interview. After that interview, I felt like this guy gave me hope that there is a great opportunity out there for me and someone is willing to give me the time of day yet alone a chance to prove to them that I can do the job. It all feels so surreal that I am gonna be going off to another great position. I was getting stressed out for how long it could potentially take me to find another job.

Anyways, it really feels so good especially to feel this genuinely happy again. It was a very happy Friday.