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Old 07-25-2020, 06:28 AM   #1
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Default Failed my 2nd Year Hands-On

Mornin', Brothers.

I know that feelings are often looked down upon in our line of work, but I could use someone to talk to. Advice, suggestions, etc. I'm open to it all.

I came into this trade (will be almost 2 years now) **very green. However, I feel that I have grown tremendously throughout my time in the apprenticeship. On the construction site, I feel more and more confident everyday. However, I do have (at least once per day) moments where I'll take too long or f&#$ something up. And I got to be honest ... I hate making mistakes. I really do.

I really, **really want to be a ***top notch wireman someday. That is the goal. Efficient, with top notch craftsmanship.

Took my hands on Final yesterday mornin' ... and **BOMBED it. Had to (without giving too much away, for obvious reasons). Had to run circuits out to multiple devices, after having set boxes and run pipe to them, and then terminate said devices.

Went in there with very little experience in running wire, so I knew that was going to be against me. But went in there knowing how to terminate the devices. Come test time, however, I messed up most of my wiring. Was as if my mind just went completely blank. And with 2 hours to do the test ... man, I just got lost out there.

Without going on and on ... I do well in school. Tests, on average, have been high 80's, low 90's this year. Work, on site, with my Journeyman's have been good as well. In fact, my efficiency at work is such where I work alone mostly, with very minimal supervision. But after yesterday ... and a few " dumb apprentice " mistakes at work ... I just feel a tremendous drop of confidence.

I suppose I'm posting all this to :

1 - Vent

2. See if anyone else has gone through this. Failing exams, loss of confidence as an electrician, etc. Anything.

Thank you for your time, Brothers.
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Old 07-25-2020, 07:54 AM   #2
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Don’t confuse lack of confidence with lack of skill.

Skill takes time and confidence follows.

Everyone makes mistakes and questions themselves.
We just don’t do it as often after many years.
But we still do it when we aren’t skilled at a task.

I hope you have a small pocket note pad. Use it everyday to write little notes. It will help you over time. I still refer back to my older note pads 10 years down the road when I return to a job I did years ago.
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Old 07-25-2020, 08:58 AM   #3
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Originally Posted by Wirenuting View Post
Don’t confuse lack of confidence with lack of skill.

Skill takes time and confidence follows.

Everyone makes mistakes and questions themselves.
We just don’t do it as often after many years.
But we still do it when we aren’t skilled at a task.

I hope you have a small pocket note pad. Use it everyday to write little notes. It will help you over time. I still refer back to my older note pads 10 years down the road when I return to a job I did years ago.
Well said !! And thank you. And yes, I do.
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Old 07-25-2020, 10:54 AM   #4
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As you get more experienced, your mistakes are more subtle and more expensive.

If I forget to "carry a 1" on a spreadsheet, it could make me go bankrupt... We all struggle with confidence and skill, just at different levels. Just as you gain confidence and skill in one area you start to realize that you don't have it in another; unless you are one of those guys that just "rides along" and is not pushing themselves.

Cheers
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Old 07-25-2020, 11:20 AM   #5
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As you get more experienced, your mistakes are more subtle and more expensive.

If I forget to "carry a 1" on a spreadsheet, it could make me go bankrupt... We all struggle with confidence and skill, just at different levels. Just as you gain confidence and skill in one area you start to realize that you don't have it in another; unless you are one of those guys that just "rides along" and is not pushing themselves.

Cheers
Well said ! Thank you for your post !!
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Old 07-25-2020, 11:57 AM   #6
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You f***ed it you fix it.

Go to homedepo or where ever you buy parts and get what you need to do the test at home. Set up a test station and wire up lights, switch's, breakers, etc on a sheet of ply wood and practice.
If money is the problem set up a go fund me account. If skill is the problem take pictures and we will hold your hand and teach you the way to do it.
The only thing we can not help you with is confidence as that takes time and practice.
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Old 07-25-2020, 12:43 PM   #7
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Don't worry Grom. It will come , just be patient and keep learning. P.S. when the night apprentice school start teaching the part about motors and controls pay extra attention. Get good with that stuff. Watch all the RealPars videos in your spare time. After you master that stuff you will be the most respected person in your whole outfit.
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Old 07-25-2020, 12:52 PM   #8
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Once I learn something new, I have to practice many times before committing it to long term memory.
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Old 07-25-2020, 12:53 PM   #9
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Originally Posted by gpop View Post
You f***ed it you fix it.

Go to homedepo or where ever you buy parts and get what you need to do the test at home. Set up a test station and wire up lights, switch's, breakers, etc on a sheet of ply wood and practice.
If money is the problem set up a go fund me account. If skill is the problem take pictures and we will hold your hand and teach you the way to do it.
The only thing we can not help you with is confidence as that takes time and practice.
Great idea !! Was just thinking about doing this actually !

Will retest August 3rd, so got plenty of time !
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Old 07-25-2020, 12:55 PM   #10
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Originally Posted by macmikeman View Post
Don't worry Grom. It will come , just be patient and keep learning. P.S. when the night apprentice school start teaching the part about motors and controls pay extra attention. Get good with that stuff. Watch all the RealPars videos in your spare time. After you master that stuff you will be the most respected person in your whole outfit.
Thanks, Mac !! I take your words to heart and am writing down your suggestions right now.
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Old 07-25-2020, 12:59 PM   #11
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Once I learn something new, I have to practice many times before committing it to long term memory.
Thanks, Stiffneck ! Was hoping I wasn't the only one.

Just haven't run a whole lot of wire yet, so got my circuits confused yesterday. And with 2 hours to finish the hands-on, I just got a psyched out.

I retest Aug. 3rd, so I plan on studying it up and giving it my all.
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Old 07-25-2020, 02:57 PM   #12
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Immerse yourself in your trade as much as you can as often as you can.

Are there j-men that do side work you can get some hours in with?

Any free classes offered by supply houses or manufacturers?

Some suppliers have free online learning stuff too.

https://www.3m.com/3M/en_US/learning...ademy/catalog/

Watching videos is always a good thing as well as macmikeman said.
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Old 07-25-2020, 03:14 PM   #13
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Great ideas, Mechanical !! Particularly the side job part, as I don't currently work weekends. Was thinking it'd be nice to shadow someone doing side work on the weekends.

Am making note of your other suggestions, sir. Thank you for the post !!
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Old 07-25-2020, 03:19 PM   #14
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Great ideas, Mechanical !! Particularly the side job part, as I don't currently work weekends. Was thinking it'd be nice to shadow someone doing side work on the weekends.

Am making note of your other suggestions, sir. Thank you for the post !!
You're welcome!

Until it becomes second nature eat, drink, and sleep electrical work.
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Old 07-25-2020, 03:35 PM   #15
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You're welcome!

Until it becomes second nature eat, drink, and sleep electrical work.
I kid you not, Brother, but I have dreams at night where i'm splicing lights and running conduit hahaha. I know they're dreams because my conduit is level hahahaha.

But agreed, eat, drink, and sleep electrical. And by God, do I love electrical work.
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Old 07-25-2020, 03:39 PM   #16
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I kid you not, Brother, but I have dreams at night where i'm splicing lights and running conduit hahaha. I know they're dreams because my conduit is level hahahaha.

But agreed, eat, drink, and sleep electrical. And by God, do I love electrical work.
I was always in the habit of taking any related class offered and in the end it paid off very well.

The more you know the more sellable qualities you have on your resume.
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Old 07-25-2020, 05:24 PM   #17
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Well if you never, ever make a mistake I'll bet you aren't doing much. I make mess of things every year or so and I've been at this a bit. (And I'm nervous because I'm past due again). Also the pressure of being on a test is a special add to the task, work at it I'm betting you'll be fine.
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Old 07-25-2020, 07:44 PM   #18
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I kid you not, Brother, but I have dreams at night where i'm splicing lights and running conduit hahaha. I know they're dreams because my conduit is level hahahaha.

But agreed, eat, drink, and sleep electrical. And by God, do I love electrical work.

I dreamed last night I had Tics and Fleas on me. Kept waking up all night long.
That’s what I get for weeding the garden yesterday.
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Old 07-25-2020, 07:49 PM   #19
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Well if you never, ever make a mistake I'll bet you aren't doing much. I make mess of things every year or so and I've been at this a bit. (And I'm nervous because I'm past due again). Also the pressure of being on a test is a special add to the task, work at it I'm betting you'll be fine.

I really appreciate the post, Didntdoit. Very, *very motivating.
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Old 07-25-2020, 07:50 PM   #20
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I dreamed last night I had Tics and Fleas on me. Kept waking up all night long.
That’s what I get for weeding the garden yesterday.
Hahahaha.
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