Starting a new job –especially if it's your very first job– can be scary. If you're anything like me, new experiences and routines can be hard to grasp, making things a lot harder and anxiety-riddled than they should be. When I first started working at my job, I could not stop shaking no matter the number of times I told myself to "calm down." I felt like I was doing everything wrong and was worried I would never be able to handle what was expected of me.
Day by day, I started to see myself becoming much more familiar with what was expected of me and gradually gained the much-needed confidence my job required me to have. Below are five things I wish I would have known before starting my job so as to make the transition smoother and easier.
1. Everyone makes mistakes especially when you're new at something.
I'm my harshest critic when it comes to literally everything I do, so when I mess up, I immediately feel like it's the end of the world. It can be hard to cut yourself slack especially when you're as particular and detail-oriented as me, but it's important to understand that things don't always have to come naturally to you; messing up is part of life, and without it, there can be no improvements.
2. Things take time to become habits.
I was always the kid who cried on the first day of school because I hated change and hated having to adopt a new routine. Before starting my job, I wish I would've accepted the fact that I wasn't going to know everything and anything the first day and that it was going to take some time to figure everything out.
3. It's normal to ask for help.
I absolutely hate asking for help, especially when I'm not comfortable with the person I'm asking, but it's important to reach out to your coworkers with concerns and questions so you can learn what you don't know and grow as an employee.
4. Not every customer is going to be nice and that's OK.
I work at a very busy restaurant that sees a wide variety of people; some customers are patient and nice while others have no regard for their actions or words. I shut down when I hear criticism or when someone isn't nice towards me, but I have learned that dealing with others is just a part of the job. I wish I would have learned beforehand to not take angry customers seriously since they don't even know me personally.
5. It's important to be friendly with your coworkers.
Being "friendly" with your coworkers and becoming friends with them are two very different things. In my opinion, having people to talk when things are slow or go to when you have a problem makes the time at work go by very fast; you have to work with these people, so why not try and make it somewhat enjoyable?