Career Candid: Small Things

taken from
Milton from Office Space the movie (source –

Some days at work have been really hard.  Where the day, week, or month just felt like a series of setbacks where I didn’t know where I was going, or worse, down a path I didn’t want.  Instead of shutting down and hiding under a bag of Cheetos, I try and focus on small, concrete things I can do that feel distinctly like a movement in a “right” direction, no matter how small.  It can be making time for a really good workout, asking someone in the office I admire out to coffee, having a two-hour conversation with my sister, researching one career idea that sounds appealing, or cooking my favorite dish.  I’m a strong believer that the big things I want (good career, relationships, health, etc.) can only come from small, consistent efforts towards them.

A few years ago I had failed a big negotiation at work and had felt completely defeated.  I ended the day by uploading my CV to the World Bank website, even though my friends who worked there told me it would be a waste of time as the database houses thousands and thousands of CVs. It was a small, 15 minute effort that helped me get through that moment; and I am happy to say that I ended up getting more mileage out of it (read: I now work at the World Bank) than any bag of Cheetos.

2 thoughts on “Career Candid: Small Things

  1. Did we say it would be a waste of time? The funny thing is that is exactly how I ended up leaving World Bank for ADB!

    1. Yes! I thought it was a waste of time too – it was really just therapeutic at the time. Didn’t realize that was what happened with you and the ADB too :).

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