Help me help other architects! This blog is an excerpt from the first draft of my book: Breaking the Box: Explode out of Architecture School to a Successful Career as an Architect. You can help me make it better by leaving a critique in the comment section below. Thx you rock! -Steve
In parts 1 and 2, I introduced you to the ‘Newbie Angst.’ The newbie angst typically comes in the form of anger, resentment, and depression triggered by the realities of life as an architectural intern and young architect.
Luckily, there are many ways to cure the newbie angst.
Cures for the Newbie Angst
Make Friends in the Firm
Sometimes just talking to people can be the best way to alleviate stress. In an ideal situation, you would have colleagues close to your level that you could commiserate with. Connecting with colleagues above you is also helpful as they were once in your shoes and can offer more sage advice.
Go to lunch, grab a beer, or just chat at the water cooler. You can call it a network, or a support group. By doing this you can get help as well as help others.
Become Active Outside of the Firm
Networking outside of your firm is another way to cope with your newbie angst. The best place to find other architects would be your local chapter of the American Institute of Architects (AIA). Many chapters have an emerging professionals group geared towards folks just like you. If that group does not exist, then start one!
I would also recommend you get involved with other organizations that may have no direct connection to design or architecture. You are likely to find other young professionals that are dealing with similar challenges. This is also another great way to expand your horizons and live a more fulfilling life.
Try to Appreciate the Mindless Work
Having simple mindless tasks is not as bad as you think. The more advanced you get into your career the more stressful the work will become. Try to relish this easy work.
There are many days when I wish someone would just hand me a stack of redlines. I could just plug in my ear buds and crank away. It would be awesome. It would be an easy day.
Architecture can be a very stressful job and having some simple tasks to do can be a blessing.
Easier said than done, right?
That stack of redlines may seem endless but this period of your career is very small. It is a tiny speck on your timeline. With every day you will improve. As your peers observe your growth they will hand you new and more difficult challenges.
Newbie Angst is a Good Thing
It is completely normal for you to be unsatisfied with your current situation. This angst is sign of your ambition. It means that you are not complacent and that you have big dreams.
And guess what? The more you grow, the stronger this ambition will become.
Harness this ambition.
How do you deal with the Newbie Angst?
The description of the newbie angst is directly from my own personal experiences. I have had a lot of internal struggle and I hope my story can help you. I would also love to hear your story. What are some things you struggled with as a newbie? And how did you cope? Thank you in advance. -Steve