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Bad ass.
Wednesday. 1.21.15 8:35 pm
This will be an entry completely filled with smugness. You are forewarned.

This is my 4th week of training and at the end of the 4th week is when they typically aim to have people "graduate." Well, I was informed that I might be "graduating" a day early, which would be tomorrow. The thing that makes me feel awesome about this? I missed a day during the first two weeks of training due to a holiday. I missed a day earlier this week due to a holiday. I also didn't get any calls in for the first two days of my phone training because I didn't have the proper access to everything I needed. So out of the total 16 days of 'normal' training, I'm missing 4 of those days and I still manage to get fantastic grades.

They have a scale they base every call on; they compare the dialogue to the proper scripting and the corresponding screenshots to make sure that I'm saying the right thing at the right time then mark me down on something I missed or said that didn't need to be said. So it's possible to be marked down for not saying enough or for saying too much, depending on the type of appointment being scheduled.

I managed to make it through my first incredibly complicated appointment today, without taking too much time to pause. I did have a lot of questions afterward and I had my mentor right next to me helping me throughout the call, but not the whole time. It feels really good to know that I'm doing so well at my job. It's what I strive to be when it comes to my work. In that way, my mentor is glad because I'm learning things a lot like how she learned them and she's happy to be teaching me the ways that helped her learn in the beginning.

As with every other step in the training, I'm nervous and excited to be moving on to the next step. It'll be interesting to see how I handle things on my own, without the mentor sitting right next to me, but the people in my pod are all incredibly helpful when it comes to questions. And seeing them get confused by things and still need to ask for help comforts me with knowing that I'm not required to just know these things without being able to ask for help.

After getting the praise that I've been getting, it's making up for years of not hearing about any of the good things I've done. I knew when I was doing well in my security job, but they only focus on the negative. I mean, these guys nit pick on the little things, but they do put out a lot of praise on top of it. It's such a welcome change.

I kind of want to just brag to everyone who will listen about how well I'm doing at my job, but I have to make sure I stay humble otherwise the one time I really mess up, it will kill my confidence. For now, I'll just stick with making sure I ask a lot of questions to make sure I know what I'm doing and can manage on my own without messing up too much.

I also like the idea of dressing up like a professional. It was incredibly intimidating at first, but it's not that bad. And there's quite a few casual outfits that can be worn as professional ... just add a cardigan or sweater and you're set.

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Monday. 1.19.15 9:41 am
I forgot that I'm taking my friends to the airport tomorrow evening, not this evening. So the one plan that I had for today wasn't the plan for today, but instead, tomorrow. Which means that I now have no plans for today and I intend to keep it as such. I have laundry in the wash right now, and a shower is on the agenda at some point, but otherwise, no plans to venture forth in to the outside world.

The shopping trip Friday and yesterday was a success. I was finally able to find a pair of pants that fit the description of professional and they're actually quite comfortable. They were much more than I am normally willing to spend on pants, almost twice as much in fact, but the quality is high so they should last me a while. On Friday I was able to find a couple skirts as well so that I now have a wide variety of outfits to wear to work. I should have enough to wear a different outfit each day for at least two weeks. I may need to take a trip back to the store at some point for more hangers ...

One bonus to yesterday's outing was that I was, somehow, miraculously approved for a credit card. It's at a store I frequent enough and will definitely be going back to again. This means that I can finally start building up my credit! After getting denied various store credit cards over the last several years, I figured the only option was for me to get a pre-paid credit card through the bank. Something which I was willing to do, but rarely had the extra $300 to start one. This new card means that I don't have to fork over a lump sum immediately and I can still work on building my credit back up to a more positive number.

Having this extra day off to kind of recoup and recover from the week of phone training is just what I needed. I'm definitely going to take advantage of the lazy day... by doing nothing except be lazy.

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Thursday. 1.15.15 6:41 pm
I find myself reacting that way a lot these days. There's so much involved in scheduling for certain specialties that it can get very confusing quite quickly. There's the basics, the more involved basics and then it kind of jumps to difficult and complicated to "wait... what??" I really appreciate the challenge, though. I like knowing that I am in the most challenging of departments. Only certain people are trained to cover because of how involved and complicated it can be so it gets a little tight when someone is out sick or on vacation.

I started taking inbound calls yesterday, making outbound calls today. I'll be learning how to do numbers and letters {go ahead, make jokes} tomorrow. The most complicated appointments out of all of them will be dotted throughout the day so that I can get in to the habit of how to properly schedule them.

Tomorrow is already starting out to be a good day. First, it's Friday. That's a win right there. Second, it's payday. This will be my first check with the new job and I'm excited to see what it'll look like with the pay increase. Third, it's a three-day weekend. So definite bonus with next week being a short week. Tuesday will be swamped with calls, but that's okay. I still have tomorrow to get more comfortable with it.

I've also realized just how awesome it is to have an ergonomic keyboard. I had tried, briefly, to use them in the past and didn't care much for them. Now? I can type just as quickly, if not faster, than on a regular keyboard. I still make just as many mistakes, but I don't think I'll be able to easily go back to using a regular desktop keyboard {I doubt they'll ever make ergonomic keyboards on laptops.}

As nice as this change is and with how excited I am for the change, I'm definitely glad that it's the weekend. My brain needs some rest. I completely understand why the training is 4 weeks long. It used to be 6 weeks, but some things changed and I guess they were able to streamline it.

I have an eye appointment late Saturday morning, meeting up with a friend to go shopping for her trip Sunday afternoon and I'm taking her and her boyfriend to the airport Monday evening. Other than those few plans, I'll probably just chill out at home and enjoy the time to rest and not think about work. There will definitely be a lot of time spent in pajamas.

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On a scale of one to ugh.
Tuesday. 1.13.15 9:16 pm
I've had a toothache since Sunday afternoon. It's been a while since the last time I've had any kind of pain coming from this particular part of my mouth, but I guess it was only a matter of time before it happened again. Go figure that this would occur less than a month after my dental insurance coverage ended. One of the few downfalls to my new position is that my status does not allow for dental coverage. But if this pain doesn't go away in the next couple days, I'll be forced to go to a dentist and have to pay out of pocket.

The last time this happened, I want to say the pain stopped after a few days, but it's been a while so it could have been a week before the pain subsided. Either way, I really should go see a dentist and find out what can be done about it. I know that I'll need surgery. That's what the last dentist I went to said so I'll probably just hear the same thing. Perhaps they'll be able to give me some kind of pain meds to help with this until I can afford to take time off to have a surgical procedure.

Today was day two in the two week phone training. I still have so much to learn, but my mentor was pleasantly surprised at how quickly I was able to take to navigating the program, considering I'd never had experience with it prior to being hired on. I don't have all the access that I need yet, however, so that kind of prohibits me from being able to do the work in full on my own. I shadowed yesterday and this morning, but I did the driving for the second half of the day. My mentor was right there next to me doing all the talking and writing down where I'd need to go, but I was able to keep up with the call. We'll see how tomorrow goes.

This coming weekend is a three day weekend and I have a few things going on, besides the dentist. I have an eye appointment where they will be finalizing my contact lens prescription so that'll be nice. I'll be able to take the script elsewhere once my new insurance kicks in. I will most likely be going to the dentist afterwards, since it'll be on the way home. I'm going to call tomorrow to see about setting up a time for that since I'm not sure those places take walk-ins.

I also have to return some articles of clothing and perhaps locate a couple more bottoms {ie: skirts, pants, etc} for work. I'm very curious to see what my first paycheck will look like. It'll probably be all over the place with holiday pay, union initiation fees and mileage reimbursement all changing it from what it would normally be. It'll most likely be March before I see what a normal check looks like for me.

Anywho, I need to rinse my mouth with salt water and take more Tylenol before calling it a night. Here's to hoping tomorrow is a pain free day ... who knows, maybe my tooth will fall out overnight and the relief will be immediate.

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Social avoidance.
Sunday. 1.11.15 7:49 pm
Some people get anxiety when they are faced with certain kinds of social interaction. Others feed off the attention and the surrounding crowds. Other people, like myself, can deal with being social, but usually choose otherwise. I have quite a few days a month, probably around half, where I'd just rather not interact with anyone. Not even through text.

I'm feeling like possibly tomorrow will be one of those days. It's kind of already kicking in now. I'm willing to answer text messages, but I will not initiate a conversation. It's kind of a silly way to act, an almost childish way, but it happens about every other day. Or it could last a few days at a time, then I'm fine for a few days.

I'll have to go back out after work tomorrow on a mission to find business casual attire for the lower half of my body. I was able to find a few nice shirts to wear to work, but no luck in the pants/skirt department. A lot of the professional stuff is all high-waisted and rather uncomfortable. If I'm going to be wearing this stuff on a regular basis, it needs to be comfortable. It's a shame I can't wear jeans. No denim of any kind, even nice dark colored pairs.

Tomorrow is day one of phone training. I kind of just want to get the first few out of the way so that I can know what to expect and how to handle it. Monday is usually pretty busy for calls, though, so I'm not sure how soon I'll be jumping on the phones myself. Guess I'll find out.

Here's to what's definitely going to be an interesting day.

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It is not Friday
Saturday. 1.10.15 8:21 am
Due to the fact that I've only been doing this new schedule for the past two weeks, my brain still wants to think that my days off are Friday and Saturday. I have to keep reminding myself that today is, in fact, Saturday and not Friday. Business hours are different today and traffic ... well, today is an exception since the Seahawks game is later, but traffic is going to be worse at different times than during the week.

I go back to my campus starting Monday to complete my final two weeks of training before I'm left on my own. I'm excited and nervous, but more excited. I know that once I get the first few calls out of the way, I'll be more confident in knowing what I'm doing and will be more comfortable not having a mentor with me.

I have a lot to do this weekend and I'll most likely do everything today, except shopping, which I know then I'll have to force myself to do tomorrow. It's kind of necessary for work. I need to make a stop at the bank, put gas in my car, pick up more contacts {since I used up all the trial lenses that I like; I have to wear the kind that I like to my follow up appointment so they can do what they need to do to finalize the prescription} buy snackable items for the party I'm going to later and buy clothing appropriate for the new job. No denim allowed since it's a clinic and they think that staff in jeans is not an appropriate image for the patients. Which, whatever, but I have to follow the dress code.

I was hoping to be able to sleep in later than this, but there's contractors outside working on the power lines and they're yelling at each other over the noise of the truck. So no more sleep for me. I may try to take a nap later today, but it depends on how my errands go and how long they'll be outside yelling. I'll need to leave around 4:15ish in order to get to my friend's at 5 so the nap might not happen today. Oh well. Perhaps, if I'm out late enough tonight, going to bed later will cause me to sleep in later.

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