3 Pro­fes­sion­als share what they learnt from their work fails

Glamour (South Africa) - - Work -

Learn to let go “I used to strug­gle to say ‘no’ when an in­ter­est­ing project came into view. Even if my plate was al­ready full, I made room for more, be­cause I be­lieved I was the best one for the task – un­til it be­came ev­ery task. Movie nights turned into nights glued to my lap­top, re­la­tion­ships turned into small talk over cof­fee, and I felt un­happy and alone. I had for­got­ten my­self in my work-only cycle! When I re­alised the ex­tent to which my job was con­sum­ing ev­ery as­pect of my life, I de­cided to pump the breaks, how­ever well I thought I would do with a project. There are some things we sim­ply have to let go of.” – Zethu Gqola, free­lance PR and dig­i­tal man­ager, One-eyed Jack

Give your­self a break “I re­ally love my job – the hus­tle, the bus­tle and the net­work­ing. How­ever, I’m prone to anx­i­ety, and at the end of 2014, I had a bad burnout as my body went into total shut-down mode and I had a panic at­tack at work. It was no­body’s fault but my own: I had pushed my­self too far and too hard without tak­ing enough breaks, and it was a big les­son for me. I now take a day off ev­ery two months just to re­lax, read, lie at the pool or go out for lunch on my own. I also make sure that I use reg­u­lar ex­er­cise as a way to de­stress.” – Leigh New­lands, ac­count man­ager, But­ter Knife PR

Ask for help “I was do­ing my ar­ti­cles at a law firm, and de­ter­mined to prove that I was hard-work­ing and ca­pa­ble of op­er­at­ing in­de­pen­dently, when I placed a trial notice without alert­ing the op­pos­ing at­tor­neys to the date. In ad­di­tion to be­ing ex­tremely em­bar­rassed, I dis­cov­ered that the over­sight would in­cur ad­di­tional penalty costs for the client. I was very lucky to be able to rec­tify the mis­take – and to see how im­por­tant it is to dou­ble-check pro­ce­dures and to get help. No one would have looked down on me if I had sim­ply asked a few ques­tions!” – Jade Robert­son, le­gal ar­ti­cle clerk, AS Hurter At­tor­neys

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