Wednesday, January 21, 2015

The Things We Want

Things I wanted recently that I bought: Champagne sweatshirt from Blonde Design, Vera Wang White booties (purchased from a wedding site, even though I'm not a bride), and a Stace Face mug from Starbucks (the mug is an ode to Stacey Bendet, one of my favorite designers).  

When it comes to shoes and things I have a tendency to get what I want, and it's not always because I work hard for them. Sometimes I get gifts (or gift cards, thanks to Christmas), or sometimes I just wait it out for the ideal sale. Sometimes I even (gulp) charge these items to my credit card. There's nothing quite so motivating as getting what you want, especially when you don't have to wait to get it. I found all of these items via Instagram, and purchased them almost as soon as I was done hitting the "like" button.

It wasn't until today, when people at my work were asked to give feedback on the type of work environment that we want that I got to thinking about wants and needs on a deeper level. Sure, I have a long wishlist of components that would make up the perfect place to work, but I know now that there is no "perfect" place to work. Every job has its perks and occasional drawbacks. I read my email  back to myself and began making corrections; there wasn't a point in presenting upper management with a shopping list peppered with my point of view. Instead, I started off by thanking them for being interested in my feedback to begin with. After all, they didn't have to ask. I then acknowledged their goals so they knew I had heard them out and didn't just read the part that said "Please send your feedback." I offered up my concessions, then offered a few small details about what works for me. The result wasn't a ransom letter (these people after all supply me with the funds to buy my shoes) but a professionally articulated statement of what I thought I would need to be that much more successful at my job.

This exercise reminded me that some things are worth the wait, or worth working for. Take this blog for instance. I almost didn't type this post, because I wanted to go to sleep and call it a night. But it hit me that I wanted to write. Sometimes getting what you want requires pain and perseverance, and knowing this, I have been trying to avoid the uncomfortableness of it all. I had forgotten how good it feels to publish a post; to talk freely with my boss; to save up for something I really wanted. 

If you focus on delaying gratification just a bit, you might actually end up with the thing you never even knew you wanted. Case in point, this cool blue Nubar nail polish, gifted to me by a sweet friend at the company. I have wanted so badly to find my footing in the nail industry over the last two years. I have worked tirelessly because I wanted to learn; to prove that I belonged. At a certain point I forgot about wanting that so badly and just started being myself and doing my best. The result is a pretty great work relationship and cool moments like seeing my name on a polish bottle, something I never would have dreamed of wanting previously. 

I caught myself thinking I would have to go out and buy some new clothes for a tradeshow this weekend, but I stopped and realized how ridiculous that is. The fact of the matter is, I don't need anything new. I have plenty. It's time to stop wanting and start appreciating. I'm so glad I stayed up to write this post. 

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