Assertiveness

Well, here’s me again. Let’s be original for a change, and not just tell you about the silly and/or funny stuff I see/hear/think. Right now, something’s bothering me, big time. I’ve been sick for quite a while, and hardly any of it was physical. I indicated that it was because of some post-internship-stress, but there’s also the graduation that’s bothering me. The assignment I was doing didn’t really suit me, it was vague, something about a domain specific language and its semantics <shudder> and fortunately my supervisor agreed with me that this wasn’t the right topic, so somewhere before Christmas, we abandoned it. Let’s refer to this as Topic 1. I’m not too bothered by the delay, it’s more important that I take good care of myself emotionally and at that time I felt horrible about… well, I don’t know, about feeling horrible mostly… :S

However, now that I’ve started looking at my graduation and possible topics again, I’ve made this bloody brilliant move of accepting a new topic that was proposed to me yesterday and that was a rather rash decision. Let’s call this Topic 2. I’m not going to pretend that it’s other people’s fault, I have trouble making decisions and figuring out what it is that I want. I feel frustrated and annoyed and damn stupid for not knowing exactly what I want but having a general sense of “no, not that either”. However, there also was this pressure from four people staring at me in a conference room going “So, will you do it?”. I suck at that, I should have just said “I’ll think about it”, but somehow I want to make people happy and that means that I become blind to the counterarguments and downsides of things and go “Well, here are the positive things, I’m sure we can make something of it”, while I’m not convinced and mentally flinch when I hear myself say something like that. Period, breathe, continue… I e-mailed my supervisor today, and also informed the company that I may have been too quick, I need some more time and information. Most of all, what I want is a graduation topic that I like, something that I’m enthousiastic about. Otherwise, what’s the point of me having any say in it?

Around Christmas, long before Topic number 2 came up, I contacted a project that I was enthousiastic about. Unfortunately, there are some organizational issues that made me go “WTF?”. I’m not going to elaborate on them, but a conflict-of-interest-situation is not for me, I’m bound to be one of the victims at the end. The topic, however, I liked, something with robots and programming and user interfaces, a bit of a blend of technology and people. Right now, I’m bummed that I may have set myself up for another stupid situation, given the choices that I made, and, frankly, I feel like shit for screwing up so bad. But still, I’m going to continue my search for a graduation topic. There is something in a similar direction, a combination of people and technology, that sounds like a good project to start my search.

Wouter: “You should take an assertiveness training to learn to say ‘no’.”
Me: “Yes.”

D’oh >_<