My First Taste Of Haterade
All my life, I’ve played it safe, flew under the radar, and did my best not to ruffle anyone’s feathers. I hated confrontation and did my best to avoid it. I shiver when I see haters tear down successful people. Ironically it’s this fear that holds me back from more success. For better or worse, I finally tasted my own Haterade.
After more than a year at my current job, I’m stepping out of the background and taking the lead on a handful of projects. One in particular has been a thorn in my side for months. I am installing a new piece of software throughout the company. However, it crashes one of our newest desktop model.
Some of my teammates have given me some good natured ribbing. This model has baffled our vendor’s engineering team for weeks. I finally got a solution. Upgrade to their latest version and the crashes will stop. I gleefully informed the team and proceeded to install on some test machines. Things were going smoothly as the software installed fine. I proudly emailed the team that we are now in the clear.
The next day I noticed one of my test machines had crashed. In my haste and my excitement for finding a fix, I forgot to observe the machine after a reboot. I rebooted a second machine and it also crashed. I was embarrassed to fire off another email to halt the use of the so called fix, but I had to prevent my teammates from bringing down any production machines.
Here’s where the fun starts. After I sent out my email warning the team not to use my fix, I get a phone call from one of my teammates asking for help on another issue. As we were working together, I overheard another teammate say, “Can you believe all those emails Buck is sending?” A ruckus goes on, but my phone goes mute as the person on the line cuts off the conversation before my other teammate can put his foot in his mouth.
As I sat there in silence, I wondered, “Am I getting hated on? This is what I’ve been fearing all my life? This isn’t so bad. If I were in his shoes I would begin to question my competency as well.”
Ironically the fear of getting hated on was worst than the actual hating. What is that phrase? Nothing to fear but fear itself? It’s so true. Perhaps my self esteem is now strong enough to handle it? Whatever the case may be, here are some thoughts that crossed my mind.
Everyone is entitled to their opinion. Who am I to think that everyone around me will only have positive thoughts about me. It’s probably my insecurity raising its ugly head. Honestly, if I were him, I would have felt the exact same way. I also have to remember his negative opinion about me has no bearing on my self worth and I shouldn’t run with it and beat myself silly.
I can’t please everyone. With all the different personalities, styles, and priorities, is it realistic to think that everyone would get along all the time? I should take this incident and motivate myself to do even better in future projects rather than crumble and lose confidence at the first sign of doubt. There are times when you are at the mercy of third-party vendors. If there is a lesson learned, I need to do my due diligence even though a solution was found after weeks of frustration.
Now that I finally tasted Haterade, something I tried so hard to avoid, I hope to free my writing from always being vanilla, politically correct, and safe. I really have been flying below the radar for too long. Fear just plays tricks with our minds and paralyzes us from reaching our full potential.
How do you handle being hated on?