Day 168: job search and challenging self-doubt

By Anton;

Giving myself a moment here, almost a week no writing, mostly spent this week in interview preps, there is much to catch up, refresh myself on, after six of years of working in one ‘shop,’ there is a bit of pigeon hole mentality has set in, so expanding and learning in prep for the next job interview. As I study thru some materials, there is a sense of overwhelmingness, “wow so much I don’t know”, this is bit of a trap, I have worked on software development for 25+ years, last 6 years in one ‘shop’ and the previous 5 years in one shop etc, so to hear my own voice in the head saying “oh there is so much to learn, you will never get another job” is rather crazy.

Of course I need a method to this madness, focus on subjects that are relevant to the next job, namely a strong c++ (version c++11) and good Linux embedded know-hows, fair to say I am comfortable in both domains, sure there is a lot to learn as well, hey I did these things for years, I have coded, developed software in so many different systems, products, languages, so why the fuck am I freaking out, its because the voice in the head is ‘doubting myself’, its confusing orderly focus to unorderly random focus, sure, if I were to randomly look at software development landscape, its huge and unfathomable for any single person, that’s where focus matters, stay focus on what is required for the next job.

I forgive myself that I have accepted and allowed myself to listen to the voice in the head that says “oh you will never get another job”, not seen/realizing its only a voice in the head, if in doubt, I direct myself to look at my own working history, writing code from 1992, and doing it professionally from 1996, so why is this voice in the head so trustworthy? Because its my own self-doubt, self-mistrust, and insecurity, despite of my proven record, I accept a self-doubt, this is because I have set a perfectionist standard for myself, “I must know it all, I must know everything, then and only then, shall I declare myself as a worthy software developer”, that’s just insane mind logic at work. I realize that I can stop it.

I forgive myself that I have accepted and allowed myself to not see/realize s/w development is a step by step process, where problems are broken down to smaller problems and resolved iteratively, in that leading to an overall solution, isn’t that what I have done over all these years? then, what’s up with this voice in the head denying me another job?

Software development is akin to breathing, a breath by breath process, every step is like a breath, that breath must be done to completion before the next breath, otherwise yes errors from previous step/breath will cascade, and worse will go unnoticed till an expensive system crash results later on. So breath by breath, step by step, small problem by small problem, this is exactly how to resolve software development issues.

There is also a process of accumulation, tools and steps are accumulated, experience and knowledge is accumulated, vocab is accumulated, this results in my readiness to next job. Based on the problems/projects I have already resolved over the years, there is a proven record of my analytical problem solving skills, and sw development skills, yet I listen to the voice in the head, that sings the voice of self-doubt.

I forgive myself that I have accepted and allowed myself to doubt myself and mistrust myself, even with a proven record of achievement.

I forgive myself that I have accepted and allowed myself to doubt myself within the belief that “I must know it ALL, or else, I know nothing at All”, not seen/realizing the faulty fuzzy logic is at work in my mind. If I truly don’t know a specific something, oh well then, I apply myself to learn that specific something, I read, I study, I try examples, I run thru experiments to see how I can acquire that specific something, its not a reason to be depressive and giving up.

Granted yes some people in high tech, I have observed they seem to know it all, and they do, it puzzles me, but comparing myself to them is not helpful, comparison of any kind is useless, unless I am observing their techniques to learn something from them.

And focus is another thing, just going on random directions, can add to the confusion, so stay focus on c++ and embedded Linux, and that’s it, that should prepare me enough to the next job. of course this voice in the head would love to sing louder till I completely sabotage myself, then it will sing a new song, “see I told you, you cant’ do anything, you wont’ get another job, now go fucking kill yourself”.

There is no end to where it can lead to if I listen to the voice in my head, instead I focus on the practical path/direction I have given myself to prep for my next job interview and do it to my best, breath by breath, without any judgment, thought or backchat in my head. Just breathe and do it.

Thanks for reading, inspired by #desteni

22 October, 2021

Anton, Canada

Author: Workers' Archive

Covering sensitivity at work and beyond on my website:

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