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Journal #8: Adjusting to My First Job Post-MSW and Mid-Pandemic

In June, I was happy to learn that I was hired for my first job post-MSW. Not only is it my first job post-MSW, but it is also my first full-time job ever. That alone would be a lot to adjust to, then add on that we are still under stay-at-home orders. WIld.

I know many recent graduates are starting new jobs. In reality, even other MSWs are starting new jobs after losing their jobs. Many others, whether they recently graduated or not, are still looking for work,

As I do whenever I write a journal post, I hope that writing about my experience will help others feel less alone if they are feeling the same.

Full Case Load

I am still building my case load and getting to know all of my clients. Honestly, it has been tough getting to know my clients virtually. Plus, I have a broad range of client now (age and diagnosis).

It’s a lot of responsibility and a lot to manage. So organizational skills are KEY right now.

Not A Student Anymore

Honestly, the biggest hurdle has been feeling incompetent.

I’ve been struggling with the idea that I’m not a student anymore. I have the same responsibilities as other therapists at my agency, but I am still learning. Everyone understands I’m still learning, but the pressure comes from within me. There’s more leniency when you’re a student, but I’m a real, full-time therapist now. The consequences of messing up are real too.

Work/Home Separation Doesn’t Exist When You Work At Home

It’s hard to leave work at work and relax at home when work and home are the same.

I have found that having at at-home office is helpful, but not everyone has that. For me, I make sure to NEVER do my work in my bedroom, and I try not to go back into the office after I finish all my work. Sometimes, I work in the living room, and I need to stop that. A coworker mentioned that she does not have an office, so instead she sets up shop at her kitchen table. However, the key is that she packs everything away at the end of her work day so that her home becomes her home again, and there is no sign of work.

So SO Much to Learn

Not a day goes by that I don’t ask at least like 5 questions to someone. Well, if I ask any less, I write down 15 questions to ask during supervision.

I am learning so much, and this makes me happy. Still, my brain is on overload. So much so, that I don’t have much more to say about it. So, I’ll just move on.

24/7

Like I said, I am always thinking about work, especially the possibility of a crisis. I am technically 24/7 for my clients (I only respond after hours if there is a crisis), so it is hard to feel like I’m off work. However, I cannot keep worrying about the possibility of a crisis.

It’s a work-in-progress, but I’m trying to live in the moment and not live for work.

Closing

All-in-all, I am incredibly grateful to be working. I love my job and my coworkers. While this is a challenge, I can only grow from it. Most importantly, I know I am not alone.

Please let me know what kind of articles you’d like to see in the future!

Check me out on Instagram @eagersocialworker for post updates!

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