Carsick on the Learning Curve

I am not, by nature, a patient person. Oh yes, I expect (and want) people to show great patience with me, but when it comes to doling it out to others? Well, let's just say it's not one of my strong points.

In the last few weeks, I've been put in a new situation at work - one that I never really expected to have:  I'm training new recruits. I'll be honest, my patience has been tested. If you're one of them and you're reading this, don't take it personally - keep reading! Poor Peter has gotten an earful more than once, and has listened patiently while I have tried to explain my methods of instruction in an effort to figure out if it's me, or them.

But... as I have been working through this process of learning how to train and teach people to do things that are now second nature to me, I have come face to face with my own inadequacies. I have been reminded (sometimes, gently, by current co-workers) that I was once new and asking a lot of (the same!) questions. Reminded, in fact, that I still ask a lot of questions. Realizing that perhaps the reason why I should keep my frustration in check is because not everyone learns the same way I do.

Let me tell you, I'm 100% sure that the Lord made the right decision when He led me away from a teaching career back in college! But I'm also learning a lot about myself. I've even found the challenge of thinking through different ways to explain, teach, and help them succeed - enjoyable! While instruction is not something that excites me, it's another useful experiene that I'm adding to my life toolbox. What I learn now, what I take away from today, may come in very handy when I least expect it.

Back when I worked at the pharmacy, the staff - as kind as they were and are (we're still friends) - would become incredibly frustrated with me because I couldn't remember how to do things that were second nature to them. They were frustrated when I didn't know how to use the phone system (I was terrified of hanging up on someone), rolled their eyes when I pulled out my notebook full of hand-written cheats so I could remember the morning routine, and gawked when I would ask, AGAIN, how to add an insurance card into the system.

During those 15 months, I felt discouraged by my own lack of memory and seeming inability to grasp the most "simple" concepts. Although my loving husband told me it was because I was in a job that didn't fit with my skills (true!), and even though I held a Bachelor of Science degree, I felt stupid, on a daily basis. And that, my friends, is a horrible feeling.

While my time at the pharmacy ended amicably enough, when I left, I was completely unsure of my own competency. And then a woman I didn't know, took a chance and hired me. Trained me. Taught me what she knew and helped me gain confidence in my own skills. Her faith and confidence in me was a gift - a gift that I want to pass on to others, even when I find myself growing frustrated in the process.

Here's to another day of learning and growth - for all of us.

What have YOU learned recently?

1 comment:

  1. I'm reading The snowball effect by Andy bounds and am re-Learning how to communicate! Incredible reading!


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