while i'm ahead

One of the hardest parts of growing up is learning to admit when you were wrong. Also paying bills and going to the grocery store alone, but mostly taking responsibility for your actions and then not wallowing in your mistake. As it turns out, I can tell you how to be awesome at commission-based selling, but I can't walk the walk. Honestly, it's been a long time since I've felt as badly about myself as I have since starting this new job. I want to be clear that my negative experience is not at the fault of Nordstrom as a company--they have really great policies and a supportive administrative team, for the most part. Rather, I'm not feeling so capable of meeting the expectations of the company or of myself as a sales associate.


Being the new person at any job is hard. In this particular circumstance, I've been thrown to the lions (Anniversary Sale shoppers) without all the tools and training necessary to survive...er succeed. Retail requires an extra layer of tough skin that I just don't have. Working in non profit, I have gained a sense of strength in dealing with certain difficult and traumatic situations. Where validation and empowerment are crucial in victim advocacy, competition and advancement are the keys to success in retail. Since my long-term goals don't align with Nordstrom's goals for me, I'm quitting while I'm ahead.

As kids, we're programmed not to be quitters. I know my parents would rather me not quit so that I can have a steady job and pay my bills and loans and support myself. While I can't help but feel like I should be grounded for quitting, leaving this job so soon is definitely important for my health and happiness. It's been a while since I've called my parents crying every other day. I'm 22; I don't need to feel stuck in a job that makes me feel bad about myself.  As uncomfortable as it is to quit, it's even more uncomfortable to know that I'm wasting time doing something that isn't right for me.

So what's next? The 97-hours-over-two-weeks schedule at Nordstrom has really kept me from things that I love. I'm going to keep working at the Helpline, keep working for Andy, enjoy time with Dago, my friends and family, and of course Contessa, blog more, and seek out opportunities to find my perfect fit.

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3 comments

  1. In every situation like this we learn a little bit more about ourselves. Glad you decided to do what was going to make you happy :). Any job would be lucky to have you.

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  2. Sounds like you are making the right decision to me! good for you Nicole! we will all be so happy to see your sweet face around the helpline again too im sure! hope quitting went well.

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