Sunday, November 4, 2012


Just before lunch on Friday, my bosses pulled my colleagues and me into a conference room for an impromptu meeting. This doesn't happen often, so my anxiety ticked up as we walked down the hall. Moments later, I definitely lost my appetite for lunch, after finding out that I need to take a licensing exam.

Both of my bosses have taken this test, and immediately began describing it as a non-event. However, they described Hurricane Sandy in similar terms just a couple days ago, and clearly most people would disagree with that assessment. But after a bit of investigation, I see that it doesn't look too bad. Multiple choice, just 120 questions over a couple of hours. One site said a fully prepared test-taker would have completed 70 hours of study.

Cue "needle scratching on a record player" sound effect. How in the world am I going to find 70 hours?

Life has always been busy. Long time readers here know I can juggle things with the best of them. My best friend from high school sent me a birthday card with Super Woman on the cover. So if I've survived so much before, why does a new test send me into a tailspin of doubt?

Maybe it's that the subject matter is only tangentially related to what I actually do, and therefore not something I really enjoy? Maybe it's that we're heading into the holidays, with travel and extra commitments? Maybe it's that I have fallen a bit behind on my commitment to exercise, at best making it twice a week lately? Maybe it's that work has been crazy busy as it is, and I'm not sure when I'll find time there to study either? Or maybe it's that it's been five years since I last took a test, and I really hoped I was done with that portion of my life.

Whatever it is, I need to get over it. I know that I will. But I wish my first thought wasn't "I can't do this."

What about you? What things send you into a tailspin of doubt?

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