Friday, June 7, 2013

Atta girl!

Last year at BYU–I I went to a lecture from on the faculty members I really admired. She talked about the transition from college to the work force and how to get your foot in the door. One of the things she mentioned in her lecture was the value in creating an "atta girl" folder of sorts. An "atta girl" folder is a place, whether online or physical to gather positive feedback you receive for your work. As simply and even vain as this may sound, I can't tell you how much I've loved the suggestion. 

Anyone can tell you that I'm an avid Gmail labeler--and that may be an understatement. Anyway, one of the labels I created for my work email is "atta girl," and I'm just loving it. See, as cool as it is to have my work published and seen by so many, it's also terrifying. When I wrote for the school paper back in high school I cringed every publication day because I was sure that someone would call or write in saying something was inaccurate about an article I'd written. You'd be surprised by how disheartening and even crippling it is for me to disappoint someone. It is one of my least favorite feelings in the entire world. That being said, sometimes I get some painful emails. I got something wrong, I used a quote someone didn't like, and one time someone was angry that my endnote says I'm a BYU–I grad (he said my writing should not reflect my university). 

So, sometimes I really do get nervous when I see a new message in my inbox. But because of the bitter, the kind notes I recieve are all the sweeter. Here are some of my favorites from my "atta girl" emails :)

  • This is a terrific example of a roundup-- a main storyline within our areas of emphasis (faith, religious freedom) coupled with useful links to deepen understanding.  Well done. - Chris Lee, one of DDM's main men
  • Appreciate you checking out our Rainn Wilson piece and writing it up. - Eric Marrapodi, Sr. Producer for
  • I just read your article about the woman that taught her daughter about bullying. Super good! I really enjoy working with you and I think you are a great writer. - Emilie B., coworker
  • You should be proud of the articles you produce, much luck in the future. - Joseph R.  
  • Wow, that's sooooo awesome, thank you very much. - Erik Endress, a man I quoted in my piece about Google Glass (this was his response when I emailed him the link to the article.)

I realize that I need to develop a thicker skin, but what it all comes down to is that I just want to make people happy--and it means the world to me when someone is willing to go out of their way to give me a boost. I can't help but smile when I know someone just wanted to say something kind and make me feel better. You know, there are a lot of good people out there :)

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