Today is the 30-day mark of my PULSE assignment at the Philadelphia Education Fund. The office is located downtown near GSK’s former site. I’m very familiar with the commute and thought it would be an easy transition. My biggest hurdle has been the change in my routine. I became a bit depressed. I just didn’t realize how comfortable I was until I entered this new routine. I miss my 40-minute commute, EV parking and open space. Everything downtown is under construction. Traffic and panhandlers are ever present. My shocks, struts and nerves have taken a beating. However, I’m adjusting… slowly. After all, I’m a native of this city. I know how to navigate the landscape, the crowds, the traffic. I’ve rediscovered my pedestrian groove and platonic response to homeless people. I love walking the neighborhood, visiting the Basilica and seeing new sights.
Regarding that actual job… well, it’s challenging to go from the subject matter expert to the clueless student. It was hard to believe I had no immediate deliverables. I’m acutely aware of how fast 6-months will pass. I wanted to quickly adapt and maximize my time and energy. I want to KNOW exactly how to achieve my objectives in a short time. But alas, adaptability and maximizer are not my strengths. My top Strengthfinder themes are input, intellection, learner, context and responsibility. I’m wired to collect data, meditate and carefully execute. I decided to lean in to this new environment and embrace the learner mode.
It’s taken a month and a whole lot of praying but I’m finally emerging from the change curve. I’m acclimated to my new team and (unopen) space. I no longer have an urge to come out of my office and sit in a cubicle. I’m very happy to be working with the Ed Fund. The people are passionate about making change, enabling educators and serving students. I’m beginning to strategize and apply my unique set of talents. I’m grateful for this new perspective and look forward to the path ahead.