When I interviewed for my first real adult job, I practiced all the questions before hand….
Where do you see yourself in 5 years?
What do you like about our organization?
And so on and so forth, throwing out degree information and buzz words galore.
As I rambled about my experience and life and how I support the mission of the organization, I got a question that I was not prepared for….
What was one of my proudest accomplishments in life?
I thought “Easy, my degree, military experience, all that Jazz”
But before I could respond, they added this
That isn’t work, school, or family related…..
I don’t know
All of my accomplishments were based off of good grades in school and getting a degree, by joining the military, some meaningful friendships and relationships…..and you just eliminated all of them!
As I took a second back to reflect in what seemed like forever, which equates to all of 20 seconds, I explained my most recent proud accomplishment.
It was changing a manifold gasket on a Ford Ranger.
A simple job, remove about 8 bolts, take off the rubber gasket by hand, put a new one on and screw the bolts back in. Should take about 20 minutes or so for your average mechanic.
I love mechanical things and building things, but whenever I work on anything motorized, I know enough to know I need to be supervised or it will probably blow up (throwback to my first solo oil change when I overfilled the Cadillac by about 4 quarts hahahaha)
I spent 2 hours on this task, from disconnecting wires that I probably shouldn’t have, to not having the proper sized wrench to undo the bolts, to referencing YouTube about how to get a good seal, to finally placing it down and tightening the bolts back up.
As I stood there in the driveway, hands covered in engine grime and fighting the frigid New England winter, I tightened up the last bolt on the manifold gasket, and started laughing.
2 hours for a thirty minute job, I have no future in this business, but that’s not the point.
I did it
I changed it unsupervised
I sat through and problem solved along the way
And I only cussed out the truck a handful of times.
A task so small, and simple, but you would have thought I just climbed Mt. Everest.
And that’s the first thing that came to mind during the interview. We spend so much of our lives worrying about degrees and jobs and those accomplishments we all need to hit, that we forgot our own accomplishments. We forget what we need to do for ourselves, whether that be focusing on a task for more then 20 seconds because you are a Spaz, or going bungee jumping when you’re afraid of heights.
In this crazy world , with society and other people telling you what you need or should accomplish…
Don’t forget about YOURSELF and what YOU want!
And if you ask me for help working on your car…..just know what you’re getting yourself into.