I am always super critical of myself. Most recently, however, is at my job. Now, I am “just” a server but I always try to give 100% to whatever I am doing and right now, I am serving. I see every day as an opportunity to make others happy. I have the power through a smile, an interaction, etc… to make someone’s day better or worse. Because of the fatigue and foggy headedness I never really feel “all there.” In fact, I feel like most days I am on auto pilot. Being a server requires fast paced, constant movement, multi-tasking and a good attitude. I work for a company that is well known for hiring exceptionally interesting, eclectic and efficient people. From the very start I have felt somewhat out of place in that I feel like I don’t measure up to my co-workers. Even though people keep telling me they wouldn’t have hired me if I weren’t exceptional – it’s incredibly difficult to get a job with this company as there is hardly any turnover and their standards are just that high. I had to go through 10 interviews! For a serving job! Needless to say, there is quite a bit of pressure for just a serving job. Anyway, I have been making quite a few mistakes and have been unintentionally flaky – forgetting in-times and not getting shift changes approved by managers. I have NEVER been this flaky at a job and I care more about this one than any other job I’ve ever had. There is potential to move up within the company itself as well as making amazing contacts, as they have a lot of pull in the hip part of the city. Connections to art galleries and what have you… So whenever I make a mistake I am very, very hard on myself, telling myself that I need to be as good as everyone else. Now, here I intellectually understand that I have only been there 2 months and a lot of the employees have been with the company several years. They do something called group service in that we all do everything rather than just concentrate on our individual sections and pool our tips which keeps us each accountable as we are responsible for our money and the team’s money. I have been “talked to” by management a few times and I even got defensive with my manager when she told me that I need to ask for help if I need it. Only problem is, I had no idea I needed help… Again, I intellectually understand the value of immediate feedback; I would rather be told straight up what needs to be fixed but at the same time, I obviously felt attacked. My reasoning was that my feelings were hurt because I felt that I was giving 100%. I feel silly even caring this much about a meaningless job – but I believe that it’s “training” for a better job later, as I know that I will encounter the same types of situations no matter where I work so I want to understand workplace dynamics now, in a job that doesn’t really matter, for when I do get my dream job. Having been in college for about 9 years, I became very good at accepting criticism in an academic setting but having been out of work while in Grad school, I lack the ability to accept criticism in the workplace.