Trust the process – Working with an end in sight

When living in an on-demand society, we often forget to “trust the process”. Social media, music, TV, and the NBA are just a few examples – this is part of our lives whether we like it or not.

The list keeps growing, we can now add things like car buying. Up until last year, it was customary to walk away with a new car and a headache after 4 hours spent in the dealership. Now? My wife and I just purchased her car entirely online, we only had to go pick up the keys. The total encounter was 5 minutes, now that’s progress, right?

On-demand is addicting and satisfying for most. A powerful dose of dopamine is usually to blame. Like anything else, there are downsides. Unpredictability and anticipation can cause a bit of anxiety, if a deal falls through we feel defeated.

Despite being a “victim” of this myself, I was fortunate enough to be raised by parents who weren’t riding on dopamine blasts from targeted ads, but rather, they had to do it “the old fashion way”.

Trust the process – The conundrum

Here’s my issue. I’m based in patience, but tempted by modern reality ….let me explain.

I work in the IT field and for years I was trying to market and leverage my skills to get into what I thought was a “better” position because they simply paid more. I like my current employer and have a great relationship with management but I’m still a bit underpaid if I’m being honest. They agreed but had no budget leverage for years due to…”stuff”.

Since management was good to me. I stayed. I kept my nose to the grindstone, did what I had to do, and was told they would keep trying every year. Well, that year finally came. I was internally promoted and paid for the quality of work I was putting into the organization. It took a few tricks on their part, but they had my back and kept fighting for me.

It’s rare to have this type of loyalty and comfort with your manager but when you do, it’s worth sticking around. I have a family, a home, cars, bills, loans, credit cards…I can really use some more money, but I don’t want to sacrifice good work/life balance and a great relationship.

It’s not always pretty

Poor work life balance can lead to all sorts of problems. Since I was making do money wise, I stayed knowing I at least had a healthy environment at work. I said I would trust the process and it worked, for me.

Now, I think we can agree success stories like this are few and far between. The purpose of this article is not to convince you to stay at a dead end job just because you like your supervisor. I had a plan in place, I had marketable skills, I had opportunities to leave if I wanted – so the pressure was both ways to retain me, an employee with great institutional knowledge and work ethic in a relatively niche position. Lucky for me, it all worked out and made those years of effort worth it.

Have you ever faced something similar? Where no end in sight became a light at the end of a tunnel? Let me know in the comments.

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