When I entered IBM exactly two months ago, I was a broken man due to external and internal pressures hounding me.

Externally, it’s the society and how it looks at you based on credentials. Political Science graduates are always stereotyped of pursuing law or post-graduate degree on social sciences, and I entertained these options. If I won’t study, I must work to keep up with the competition. In a world of misfits, the absolutist-idealist me was pressured to align work with my degree.

Internally, ego says I must reap achievements. Though I’ve compiled a somewhat impressive roster of extra-curricular activities, I felt underachieved. Questioning starts with a ‘what if’, and expect the usual two-word to construct a discourse longer than what you’ve imagined.

From that state, perhaps it’s time to quickly look back and assess how I’m faring so far at IBM. I’m encapsulating it using the same letters: I Believe Myself.

Who imagined me working in a corporation clad in suit? My parents somehow did, but not the chunk of people I’ve been with (or maybe they just refused to care). Neither did I, until I’ve gone astray and confused.

Why enter a world of competition when you can’t even compete with others and yourself? Why be exposed to corporate pressure when you can’t keep up with the societal demands? How must one fit when he doesn’t even know himself and what could make him fit? Despite the uncertainty, I signed the contract.

Day 1 came. Clad in my favourite business casual attire, I went to Eastwood with hopes comparable to someone excited for his Day 1 in the real world. My hands were clammy! I had inhibitions but remained willing to try and turn the fortune around.

That single decision interestingly trickled down to some other aspects of my life. The faith I almost lost has been replenishing day by day. There has been a notable progress leading to the resolution of a personal problem. I realised, John Mayer is right when he said that fear may only be a misunderstood friend. Fear grounds me back to the present. It lets me learn from the past that haunts me and prohibits me from wondering on the unpredictable future. It dedicates me on the now and its wonderful opportunities.

I also decided to start innovating my ways. This is a daunting task but I’m welcoming it. I’m trying to come to the office less late. I’m putting deliberate attempts to plan a day. I take everything I need to improve myself to ensure efficiency at work. Though with mixed successes, I’m happy.

The initial journey wasn’t as uptight as I imagined when I began to communicate with fellow new hires and teammates. It was nice having buddies over lunch to share stories with and what have you. Forging new relationships can be thrilling, but the real deal begins as friendships blossom. It’s a blessing I’m learning to appreciate.

Days went by quite fast from the orientation seminar to this day I’m writing a Project Kick post.

Admittedly, I still feel negative about myself. This stint at IBM has not fully resolved self-doubts and frustrations, but at least I’m learning to utilise these for the better. Sure, issues come. But how I view them has been gradually improving. I trust the capabilities that come with me as a package. I’m learning to be more responsible of myself by becoming more conscious of my thoughts, words and actions. I avoid becoming over-critical. That mindset shift alone is laudable.

IBM, personally, will be remembered for this legacy.

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