Today I suggested a thing. It doesn’t matter what the thing is, what matters is how I felt about the thing. I had a suggestion for a group of colleagues, and I wasn’t sure how it would go over. I’d been thinking about it a while. It was something that had bothered me, and I wanted it changed, but I wasn’t sure if it was bothering anyone else. In fact, I rather suspected it was just me, and I would sound like a nitpicky complainer if I brought it up.
So I didn’t—at least not for a while. This was what I like to call “Past-E” taking control. Growing up (and actually into college and beyond), I was always incredibly shy. I was also convinced that my opinion didn’t (and shouldn’t) hold as much weight as pretty much anyone else’s. I was meek with a capital ME. Over the years I’ve managed to shed a lot of that, but clearly not all, because I hesitated so long with this thing.
So anyway, it finally bothered me enough that I brought it up. In an email, I explained what was was bothering me. I laid out what we could do to change it. I even explained why I thought making that change midstream might be an asset, rather than making us look like we were inconsistent. Pressing Send was much more difficult than I’d’ve expected. My heart was in my throat, and as I hit the button, I clenched my eyes closed and silently said “screw it!” Then I sat on tenterhooks, waiting for the first reply. And guess what? Continue reading