Have you ever had a nightmare that seemed so real and yet you were unable to wake up from it to escape?
Have you ever woken up and then gone back to sleep to find that you are back in the same nightmare !!?!
That was my night last night unfortunately. And today I’m exhausted and physically tired.
It’s been many years since I worked in investment banking, but the memories remain lodged in my subconscious and it turns out that an investment bank makes a pretty good setting for a nightmare.
It was my first day working at The Bank. After waiting to get through the gates, I was handed a ream of printed paper that had my on-boarding instructions on it. I had to read through all of it before becoming operational.
My new team sat around a table, the chairs were uncomfortable and broken, sitting 3 to a desk. I couldn’t remember any of their names as they all started talking in an impromptu staff meeting.
There was some kind of upcoming offsite day which no one had prepared for, but facilitating it was going to be my first task. My manager was really keen for me to do that. Meanwhile I couldn’t focus on reading my stack of on-boarding papers.
One of the team members said the The Bank’s computer security was poor and his laptop could get into anything. I accidentally pressed one of buttons and it started dialing the The Bank‘s police and geo-locating my place in the building. I’m not sure what I was doing but they are coming for me.
I managed to shut the laptop down just in time and my pass allowed me to exit the building, whereupon I visited The Bank’s apparel shop because I hadn’t yet purchased the uniform.
After lunch I got lost in the building and couldn’t remember what floor the team was on, nor what it was even called. I sat at some hotdesks on level 7 which were immediately better than the team setup previously, because I didn’t have anyone looking over my shoulder.
I said to the person next to me “I’m not really sure if my heart is in this although I’m getting paid well. But equally I’m not sure I can leave because I have bought these 3 official cardigans and also these 3 polo shirts, each costing £20, and I’m not sure if I’ll get a refund”.
I guess this is an anxiety dream about possibly returning to “office work” in the near future, and what I may find there
The dream was real and happened last night – but is shared today in good faith in support of World Mental Health Day.
Support the work of our good friends the Samaritans if you can, who often take calls from people in the middle of the night having dreams just like this. Luckily I wasn’t one of them last night however.
Ask any project manager about the key to their success, and they will say that delivering a project is often more like a "dark art" or by chance, than a predictable science.