Hi - I'll try to keep this as short as possible
I have just finished my culinary school training, and I absolutely loved it and I do love cooking, but I am very aware that at college and home it is completely different to the workplace. I've always been a bit anxious about working in restaurants, and for a long time I didn't think I should (I'm 18 and a girl), but I decided as I was coming to the end of my course that I had to at least try it because I'd regret it if I didn't give it a go, and at the end of the day I can always leave if I hate it.
So I contacted a few places and went for a trial at a high end restaurant which I did really enjoy (and found terrifying in equal measures), but while I was there I kept telling myself 'it's just a trial you may as well enjoy yourself', so I did. However, they have now offered me the job (and they have been really nice and enthusiastic about it), and the prospect of working in an actual professional kitchen has very suddenly become super real. I keep having completely conflicting thoughts where one minute I'm all 'I have to give it a go! It'll be exciting, and I can always leave! And I might love it!' and the next minute it's 'is this really what I want to do? I'm going to be rubbish! The fact I'm even thinking this implies I shouldn't be doing this! Am I passionate enough?'
Essentially, I want to ask, does the fact I have these doubts indicate I shouldn't be doing this? I do absolutely love cooking but as I said, this is different. But I read all these blogs and posts online and it's all 'TO BE A CHEF YOU MUST 100% LOVE IT AND EVERYTHING ABOUT IT AND HAVE ZERO DOUBTS, IT'S A PASSION BE PASSIONATE FIGHT TO THE TOP RARGHH' and that's really not me! I do have doubts, and yes I am passionate but not in this super extreme way because I've never done it before.. I just feel that all the people you find online internet-yelling about 'f*cking this' and 'working your as* or d*ck or whatever expletive off' are just not like me - are these people really what all chefs are like? Of course I'm aware of the hours and the commitment etc, but in my mind, as long as I enjoy what I do I don't mind. I don't know how much sense this is making but basically, I just don't think I'm anything like most of the chefs I see online.. The kitchen that offered me the job is 100% men and they were all really nice and friendly when I went, but yes I'm aware of the challenges I'll face (I'm also aware that I sound like a softy-girl on here and yes, I'm not a super macho swearing power woman, but I can deal with blokes like that fine). Am I not suited to working in a restaurant because I'm not a macho shouting swearing angry smoking person? I'm a hard worker, I do what I'm told (at college I was the only person who didn't particularly want to be a head chef within three years because, in my view, I'd much rather do what someone with far more experience and skill is telling me to do than making stuff up myself!), and I have a surprisingly thick skin (may not seem it from this post, but in the situation I can deal with being yelled at). I'm just not that stereotypical angsty-angry chef type... and I'm really nervous about starting this job in case the fact I'm not 100% excited and raring to go is a glaring sign that I shouldn't be doing this. I try to remind myself that if I don't like it I can always leave, but I know what I'm like and I'm terrible at quitting things in general (don't like failing etc...), and I feel that quitting this especially would be a massive cop-out and I'd just be another one of those silly girls that couldn't hack it... so I'm also worried that once I start, even if I don't enjoy it, I'll make myself stay..
I realise this isn't really question more a panic brain-vomit, but I'd appreciate just any words of advice or experience or anything!