Can someone be “too strict”?

Photo by Adnan Shahid on Unsplash — I thought this owl had a strict face, don’t ask me why

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As I mentioned last week, today was a big day for me as I had to present to the “big boss” of my division what I had been working one for the past 1.5/2 months. Needless to say, there was a lot of slides — and maybe too many 😅.

I guess that overall I was quite satisfied with the feedback as she could appreciate my effort in data analysis. Trust me, I have worked on almost every single data piece to make sure not to leave any details and I was pretty proud when she said that.

But (because there is always a but), she was sometimes picky about the design of my slides or the way the data was presented. I understood her points and I guess I even agreed with almost all of them.

My problem wasn’t there.

My problem was that those “weak” points were actually just due to the fact that I started to work on that project using the style/format of the 3 previous interns.

Those were the only base to start working on it as I had not received any training on how to use the tools/software.

So I felt like “why was it ok for them but not ok for me?”.

And then, I changed my mindset.

If it was ok for them and not for me, it means the expecations for me are higher.

So, instead of thinking that someone was just being strict with me, I started to think that this person was just trying to help me become even better.

They had done 100% of what they had been asked.

I had done 150/200% of what they did.

But I was expected to go above 250%.

So, next time someone is being strict with you. Instead of dwelling and feeling down like I did for a few minutes, you need to understand that it’s all about expectations.

The higher it is, the better it is for you.

But that’s just my opinion.

And you, do you think people can sometimes be too strict?

Thanks so much for reading. If you’re wondering why I’m doing this daily podcast/medium post, you can find the answer right there. Oh, and if you’re interested in following my adventures, day 68 is coming soon.

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Writing how-to guides for foreigners in Japan, based on personal experience. From getting an internship/job to driving or renting an apartment.

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