Acclamation is key. For someone who desperately wants to stand out and be special, yet not to be looked at or talked to, this can be something of a sticky wicket. Sitting out among the co-workers in my cube, I realize that laughingly referring to them as ‘gen pop’ puts my mind in a not-so-funny place: jail.
I’m starting to think maybe I need to shank someone.
Step 4: made a searching and fearless moral inventory of ourselves.
First off, it’s not a demotion. My company moved buildings. Shrank, if you like. That’s half the people and two-thirds the individual offices. Of course I’m grateful to still have a job; hell, I even got a raise in the process.
So now, I guess I’ll just bitch about loss of aesthetics, privacy and coolness. I refuse to decorate my space; so I again go opposite – minimalist extremis. Even my lack of decor says, “go screw.” I’m giving them nothing to look at; nothing to latch onto and formulate probing questions from. There – right there – “probing questions” – like Phyllis in Project Management is a C.I.A. operative, and if I put up a piece of my daughter’s art on my 4-foot wall, well, that’s all a highly trained agent needs, right? I’ve seen movies like this before – in my head.
It’s really about loss of control, loss of solitude, loss of isolation. And acting as if I’m still behind full-sized walls requires a level of mime I’m just not up for.
Today: I need to do what’s uncomfortable. I need to go out among the people. That doesn’t mean walking up and down the aisles pressing the flesh, but it can’t remain head-down-to-the-breakroom-and-back, either.
Simple thing: Smile, for Christ’s sake. Literally.