I am the Jennifer Lawrence of the workplace

Clumsiness: walking into walls and falling over chairs

I will come right out and say it. I am one of the clumsiest people around. And I am not exaggerating. In popular culture, such an honor may belong to the actress Jennifer Lawrence.  She has fallen more times in the public eye than one can count. Well, that is a slight exaggeration.  However, let me note a few.  Back in November 2015, it was noted that she fell down for the third time on a red carpet.  When she won her Oscar in 2013 for Silver Linings Playbook (a great movie by the way), she tripped up the stairs as she went on stage to grab that statue.  Shen then fell again the following year going onto the Oscar stage. While she may be a great actress, especially for such a young age, she most certainly cannot walk in high heels very well. Someone get that woman a walking coach, stat!  And, while she is at it, I can use a walking coach as well.

I can walk in heels. I have no problems sauntering across a stage in 5-inch heels. I have done it numerous times and have never tripped or fallen in heels. Yet, I am one clumsy woman. See, I tend to walk into chairs, poles and walls. Oh my!

The first time I realized this was over a decade ago. I was walking down the same hallway I had walked for over a year. In that hallway, was a chair. A chair that I always passed. Then one day I walked straight into despite knowing it was there. I got up and walked right back into it. Everyone just stared. I knew they wondering how could such a well put together, smart woman could walk right into the same chair twice.  I never walked into that chair again. Although, there were walls, long-standing walls that I couldn’t quite steer clear of. Then there were other workplaces and other walls, that I just walked straight into.  After a while, I made it part of my charm and schtick. Everyone knew I was smart. I think they figured it was just me being too smart for walls.  How silly is that?


Recently, I managed to walk straight into a metal pole on the street right after a long day at work. Now that is somewhat understandable. The hilarious part about that incident is that I called the nurse advice line since I didn’t want to go to urgent care. A doctor called me back and asked me if I knew my name, the date and the name of the president. I responded by letting him know that because of my horrible work schedule, I never know what the date is.  I use my phone partly for that.  Further, I half the time I don’t even know my name. Well, that is a joke that I told him and the doctor wasn’t amused. I just didn’t understand how he thought he could figure out whether I had a concussion by asking me those questions over the phone while I was seated in front of a computer.  I suppose it was silly of me to begin with to call the advice line. Next time, I just have to make sure to avoid metal poles when I am tired from work at 9 at night. I had a huge bump on my head the next few days and people just laughed. There I went again crashing into poles.


If Jennifer Lawrence can have such a successful career while being so clumsy, so can I . As a matter of fact, that is my schtick. I did it before she did. What I have learned is to embrace the clumsiness as part of my workplace persona. It disarms people a bit allowing me to actually be more effective with them when I need to put corrective actions in place.  Many just don’t see the force of my will. But, hey, even after I fall and trip over chairs, I get right back up. Sometimes, I trip again right after but I never stay down for the count.



5 replies »

  1. Hilarious! Visions of cartoon characters from my youth combined with a disgraceful sense for black humour. There is something so delightfully funny about another person encountering small accidents. I guess it is a way of saying ” I’m so glad that wasn’t me ” and we subsequently go on to let out a completely in-appropriate laugh.
    Whatever the psychology of the matter, I just wish I could have been there to see the wall episode. Now that was funny in anyone’s book.B


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