Sunday, January 4, 2009

The jitters

I have the jitters. The new job jitters.

I'm starting a new job tomorrow. My first real job here in the United States. My first job here that isn't work disguised as "gaining experience" in the form of internships or clinical rotations or research assistantships. My first real job that brings with it the coveted work visa and a salary finally higher than the measly wages paid to overworked, underpaid grad students.

It's the start of a new journey. And I'm nervous and anxious and panicky and sweaty. And yet in so many ways I'm excited too. Excited to begin it all. I am finally ready to put all the worries and anxieties and uncertainities over the what-could-have-beens, and what-should-have-beens of the past year behind me and just finally take a step forward and embrace the new year of possibilities that lies ahead of me.

I have no idea what to expect out of this. No idea what lies ahead in store for me. No idea where this journey will take me. And the not knowing scares me a little. I wonder if I'll like them. Whether they'll like me. I wonder if this will turn out to be the smartest decision I've made. Or whether I'll look back at it and kick myself in the butt. I wonder if this will bring me fulfillment. Or whether I'll be miserable at it day after day.

And yet regardless of where it takes me, I'm finally ready to embark on the journey. And I embrace it all with endless, eternal hope. Hope that I can be good at what I do. Hope that I enjoy it enough to want to come back to work on it everyday. Hope that it provides me with a sense of satisfaction. Hope that I can form new lasting friendships. Hope that it opens up new career directions for me. And hope that the journey, despite all the nervous jitters, is pleasant after all.

~vagabond~ © 2009
Yes. I am perfectly aware that I am rambling. Nervousness makes me incoherent. But I do want to document these thoughts and this moment for myself. So forgive me if this post doesn't sound very coherent to you.

Thanks for all your good wishes. I do appreciate them all. I just thought I'd clarify...this isnt technically my first job. I have worked ever since I was eighteen years old and have held many different jobs over the years. My first job was in an different career can read about about my very first job here. After a horrible experience that left me hating my previous career, I switched career paths and this is my first new job in my new career. It is my first true job in the sense of the work visa, but I have worked informally for NGOs here in the US before. I know these jitters are normal, but I always feel them the first day of a new job nonetheless. It takes me a couple of days into my new job to get them out of my system. LOL.


Inner Vision said...


As usual you have written it so very well. But importantly enough let me take this opportunity to say congrats to you. Well done…and believe me everything will be fine and will go well. I think it’s always better to think lesser. Good luck and all the very best.

kunal said...

congrats.. when i got my first job i didn't have any expectation, i was just happy that i have got a job, in the next job i knew what i wanted to get, now i know in the third job exactly i want to do.

U know my first job gave me a lot of insight about what i could do i what i couldn't.

The post was really very well written.
Jitters will go, u will face ur likes and dislikes soon.

alok said...

Hey! That’s indeed New Year gift for you, great!!! Now calls for a party :)

And dono worry, not knowing what’s there ahead helps you actually identify what you have with you and its fun in more than one way. To face the unknowns, to challenge the unexpected ones and to acknowledge no one is a stranger here :)

So good luck & all the very best!!!

Cuckoo said...

Hearty Congratulations. You got a perfect new year gift for yourself.

Don't worry, jitters will go away. You are not marrying a person to take vows for a whole life. So, relax !! :)

All the best !!

ashes said...

Congratulations Vagabond on your job. The jitters are always there when you start something new. It is just normal. They'll fade away as you start going to work. I have had similar sentiments all the times I've switched jobs, it is only the first time for you.

All the best! Hope you'll still find time to write after you start working.

~vagabond~ said...

@Inner Vision: You are too nice...I dont think I wrote it very well but I just wanted to document the event for myself. Thanks for your good wishes...and it turned out to be quite okay after all. :)

~vagabond~ said...

@Kunal: Thanks. And you're absolutely right...first jobs do help us figure out what it is we want out of our career. Technically, this isnt my first job...I was pursuing an entirely different career and an internship during my PhD made me realize exactly what you realized during your first job - insignt into what I was willing to do and what I didnt want to compromise on. And so this is technically my first job in my new career.

Hopefully, now that I know what I want and perhaps this job in its own way will help me get there.

Thanks for your good wishes :)

~vagabond~ said...

LOL! Yup. I suppose I do need to treat you guys. Alright, free ice-creams for everyone who visits my blog. Erm. Except that you guys arent here, so I'll just go ahead and eat them all on your behalf. :P

Thanks for your kind advice and good wishes. :)

~vagabond~ said...

I found out over Christmas time that I got the job so it's really a Christmas wish come true.

LOL. Marrying my job? Now that's a scary thought.

Thanks! :)

~vagabond~ said...


Thanks. And yup, you're absolutely right...they're just first day jitters. I'm starting to feel more in my element day by day.

I hope I can continue to write too...writing keeps me sane. :)

Ashutosh said...

Congratulation on the first job.... it reminded me of my first day at my first day around eight and half years back.

These heebie-jeebies will go off as and when you get older in the job.

~vagabond~ said...

@Ashutosh: heebee jeebies are finally wearing off. :)

bindu said...

I just saw this post of yours - now I'm totally curious about your career path and what you do (after I read the link to your year-long experience with WWF!). That's coz I'm going through a drastic career change myself along similar lines. If you have a moment, drop me a line at bindu11 (at), would you?

Vamsee said...

Congrats and good luck with your new job.
Take it one day at a time and you will be fine.

~vagabond~ said...

@Bindu: just noticed your comment right now...will drop you an email soon.

Thanks...and one day at a time it is. :)

Just call me 'A' said... how is it going? :)

~vagabond~ said...

@A: Thanks. It's going good actually...I like the people I work with, and that always helps.

Rahi said...

sorry to have reached here late. actually I used to visit ur photo blog more often. so now that u wud be entering the second month of your job, tell me r u happy wid ur decision or not.