Today was an interesting day at work. It was much slower than usual, so I had the opportunity to roam around a little bit. It was shortly after doing so that I overheard two of my coworkers talking about me, which came as a surprise given that I basically keep to myself all day and don't engage socially with anyone at work.
Normally a situation like that might have some pretty damaging impacts since work gossip is rarely ever positive, but to the contrary they were both talking about how much better at my job I am than others, and how customers usually have good things to say about my work.
It was something that I already knew given the amount of attention I give to the job, as well as observing how other people perform the same duties. But to hear it from other people, especially ones that have nothing to gain from sharing since I wasn't privy to the conversation, is incredibly rewarding. So much so that it's been on my mind all night.
And in almost an uncanny coincidence, later that day a third coworker briefly mentioned to me how he needed to be more like me since I handled the stresses of work so calmly and professionally.
I've long known that I'm hard-working and competent at my craft, and have heard plenty of comments related to that over the years, but the fact that I can lead by example and be a source of relief for my coworkers is a very satisfying comfort. It's beyond merely being useful, but actually having my presence impact more than just the job. I'm valuable not solely for what I can do, but for the kind of person I am while doing it.
For someone that often struggles with self-image, today was a very nice small victory that I'll try to keep in mind going forward.