Disappointment & Confidence

I wrote this in English because it is a habbit I have: when I’m frustrated, I wrote in English.

It feels safer and warmer because it seems no one will take time to read it carefully when the language is switched.

Today one of our freind told me she decides to resign to brew her drawing skill dedicatedly. She is working with us since Myriad, then Palm4fun, then Testbird. And she is not just a colleague for us, but a talent, honest freind. So I feel kinda upset.

But I know it will happen sooner or later since we join Testbird.

It doesn’t have to be her, but it will happen.

It doesn’t have to be Testbird, but it will happen.

I know it because everytime when you join a new team you will have the disappointment and confidence problem.

On the very first day of the new job. When you walk in the building knowing practically no one. Everyone is pleasant and nice… almost too nice. Everyone (including you) is not quite themselves because everyone understands the power of the first impression. They’re watching every single move and attempting to interpret how these moves might be perceived. It’s exhausting and it doesn’t reflect the natural steady state of the team.

You listen. You talk to every single person who is willing and you slowly form the impression of the tangible and intangible aspects of this group of people. A picture slowly forms in your mind of how it fits together and, as an aside, it’s almost always wrong because your brain hates discord. As quickly as possible, your brain wants a framework that efficiently predicts what is going to happen next. Your initial framework is a calming hodgepodge of past experience combined with your three most recent epiphanies, and you call this weak sauce, 「The way they work.」

And this poor assessment goes both ways. It’s the beginning of the disappointment. You discover your model for them is incorrect. They discover that you are not who they expected. It’s the end of the honeymoon and the fact the end has begun is progress, but it mostly feels like disappointment. You’re in an unfortunate hole. It’s buyer’s remorse. It’s understanding the world is never, ever that simple.

You sense their disappointment, so you listen harder. You push yourself to talk with a wider variety of unfamiliar humans, because you continue to erroneously believe that one of them could tell you that elusive one rule that would explain this particular clan’s culture in a immediately useful and revealing way. You read every decrepit wiki page. You attend every meeting. You’re attempting to rebuild yourself in a new culture and it’s exhausting because you took all of this for granted in your prior gig. You had built blazing fast intuition, but it took months…perhaps years.

Or maybe never.

How can you start climbing out of the disappointment? The only way I know is through small, unexpected wins.

Find something small enough that you can fix it without breaking other things.

No one expected you to fix that; no one even knew it was broken; and no one thought it was that important. When you fixed it, no one really noticed. When the consequences of the fix became obvious, they thought, 「She/He can do that? Hmmm….interesting.」

Your fix is your first legitimate reputation defining moment, because while people were told who you were, they didn’t believe it because people don’t believe what they have not seen.

Disappointment vanishes slowly and quietly each of these small wins. The wins don’t feel substantive or impactful, but they continue to incrementally define who you are to the rest of the team. They start to build a realistic model of you in their minds. You’re not who they expected, it’s not what you expected, but after three months you start to think of this strange place as home.

I wish all the best for her and hope she take the time to relax and learn, and come back not just with her enhanced UX expertise, but also with the knowledge that everybody boarding on a new ship will have the same disappointment problem and you can always conquer it with small wins.

Good Luck!


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毕竟从 82 届的《拆弹部队》算起,到 85 届的《为奴十二载》,年年美国主旋律,今年能够给一部足够有特色的杰作,而不是再给《SELMA》或者是《美国狙击手》这样的「美国好电影」,算是奥斯卡「迷途知返」。

另外有很多人觉得 2014 年是电影的小年,所以呼声最高的《鸟人》和《少年时代》都是小众电影。但其实这年有达内兄弟,有诺兰,有大卫芬奇,有波兰斯基,挺大的一年。

而《鸟人》在这样的「大年」也走得很曲折:在《少年时代》起跑阶段一家独大的状况下,《鸟人》在后半程接连拿下了 PGA(制片人工会)最佳影片,SAG(演员工会)最佳群戏和 DGA(导演工会)最佳导演,最终在奥斯卡翻盘。





每个人都会时不时地希望完全遵从自己的内心去生活。演员想不用管剧评家说什么;女儿想不用管父母说什么;老公想不用管老婆说什么;想在戏台上和 Lesley 真正来一发的 Mike 想不管所有人说什么。换句话说,不管有钱没钱,我们都希望不用管其他人是什么感受任性一下。



大多数人当然会觉得 Riggan,Mike,Sam,Lesley 这样的人太傻太敏感太脆弱。

这里的大多数人包括 Riggan 穿着内裤走在时代广场的时候,那些拿起手机拍的看客。包括打开微信疯狂的摇完几块钱的红包,然后传播「看开」、「放下」、「断舍离」的你我。



就算是 Riggan 本尊也需要在化妆镜上贴着句话时时提醒自己:

A thing is a thing, not what is said of that thing