When I started working in my current job back in September of last year, I was extremely nervous. Coming from a workplace that I loved, having already made friends and established myself there, coming to this new place was a risk. One thing that made my start in my new workplace even more difficult was the girl that filled the position before me. Upon my first day of arrival, my boss told me that I have big shoes to fill. He told me how amazing the girl before me was, how everyone loved her, and how saddened they all were when she had to leave.
If I hadn’t had enough pressure on my first day already, this sure did add some more. In my few first weeks there, I would constantly hear about this other girl, and it didn’t help that she would show up frequently either. Having heard so much about her since the moment I set foot in the department, she would not escape my mind. I constantly compared myself to her and only looked for a reason to bring myself down – telling myself I will never be as good as her. If there was something I didn’t know or didn’t manage to do, I’d tease myself by saying she probably would do it with ease.
I suppressed myself, didn’t let myself find my spot and my place in my department because I preserved it for her. I didn’t let myself take on what used to be her role and make it my own, but rather let her keep it while I disappeared in the background. Having earned my place in my previous workplace, I didn’t know the feeling of resuming it from someone else. After a while of being in the department, I gained some confidence and started establishing myself there. I made this position my own. At the end of the day, this is the way it goes. Someone leaves the workplace, leaving a gap to fill. Someone has to fill the position to keep business going. Don’t aspire to be like the person the came before you, but to be yourself. Aspire to bring your own flavor to the position and making it your own. It is natural to miss someone who has been with us for a while, as it’s also natural to bring someone new on that journey and into our life.