Category Archives: Career path

Dream Life Needs Advice! Mayday!

blogI’ve got a small problem. Just a teeny tiny itty bitty problem. The smallest of problems, really. And to most, it wouldn’t even seem like a problem. But it’s bugging me. The problem?

I have a Dream. Complete with a Dream Life.

Ok, that sentence doesn’t read exactly the way I want it to. What I meant to say was that I have this goal for a Dream Life in my head. Which isn’t bad – normally that would be good. The problem is that I have absolutely no idea how to get from point A to point B. At least, no idea that is grounded in reality instead of absolute fantasy. That causes my Type A personality piles and piles of stress, because my Type-A-ness likes to have a goal, set a timeline, take steps toward the goal and make it happen.

I’m totally out of my element here. What’s my Dream Life? In my Dream Life I’m a freelance writer. Correction – a Writer. With a capital W. Because the capital W makes a big difference. It does. Really. As a Writer I’d have much more control over my schedule, be able to express my creativity in my work, interact with fascinating people in interesting situations and – of course – do what I love. Reading and writing.

Of course, my Dream Life also has a Dream Office. Like the one in the picture, only looking over a tree-lined boulevard of New York brownstones – or perhaps an artsy Parisian neighborhood, complete with cafes.  What would the Dream Job be without a Dream Apartment in a Dream City, after all? If I’m gonna plan this out I may as well do it right, right??

But here’s the catch – I am completely spinning my wheels on this writing thing. I’m stuck. One problem is that I’m enough of a people-pleaser that I find myself trying to write what I think others will want to read. Bad Writer! Hand-slap! Throat-punch! I should be writing what I think, feel and experience – and to Heck with anyone who doesn’t like it! (Says my rational side that only pops its head out and about bimonthly or so…)

I started blogging. Check. Daily. Check. Switched platforms when I realized that a) most of the hits I was getting were spam, not legit readers and b) heard through the grapevine that people were having trouble commenting on my posts. That’s not cool.

But this new platform is intimidating. I feel like a really really tiny minnow in the Pacific Ocean. So many amazing writers – and who am I to think I have anything at all to contribute? It’s danged intimidating, y’all! And darn it – work keeps getting in the way of my writing time! I get most of my inspiration during my commute – and since I’m challenged behind the wheel on a good day, I’ve no chance at all of recording/writing any of these ideas down. I mean, honestly. I’m the one with the Find My Car app on my phone, remember? I’d end up in New Orleans if I tried to multitask behind the wheel, especially the way I get consumed when I write. And I’ve had a really good idea for an editorial in my head for months now – but spend my days editing others’ work instead of creating my own.

So here’s the thing. I need advice. Lots and lots of it. Preferably of good quality. What steps should an aspiring Writer take to get on the right path? Where do I start? Any and all advice is welcome – I’m begging here! Take a look around this blog, read some of my stuff, and tell me what you honestly think! No Ponzi schemes please – I’ve already weeded through a few of those. I’m talking legit Writing Business Advice here! Thanks for taking the time to comment!

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Filed under Career path, Personal growth, Reading, Uncategorized, writing

The Test

So today’s the day. My Big Test at work. They’ve been pretty cool about it actually – leaving me to myself so that I can retype all of my notes and go over all the online resources. And that’s been nice. But dangit, it seems like the more I try to prepare the more uptight I get about it.

THAT’s the reason I specifically didn’t prepare for the GRE when I took it a few years ago. There are just some things that you can’t study for. I’m one of those people that tend to psych myself out if I’m over prepared, at least for tests. Musically too. Back in the day I would actually make myself leave the instrument in the case the night before an audition. Like my teacher said, ‘If you’re not prepared now, cramming won’t help.’

And I need to remember that today during The Big Test. Honestly, it shouldn’t be that bad. It’s open note and I’ve got access to all of the online Job Aid materials. So why am I even remotely concerned? Three reasons, really.

  • All of the coursework for this certification has been online. Each course had a quiz at the end. And some of the questions were pretty vague and random. Definitely NOT written by teachers, to tell the truth. Almost like some of those video defensive driving questions where they ask what color the speaker’s shirt was, just to make sure you actually watched it. And random questions freak me out. I tend to read too much into them, not go with my gut and end up doing less-than-perfect.
  • The passing rate for certification here is 80%. 80 percent. I’m having real trouble wrapping my teacher-brain around that one. 70 is passing, right? Always has been, always will be. Even for educator certification. And that stresses me out.
  • What’s on the line? Um, a new job title, a step up, business cards and my ego. There are lots of people in other offices that have passed this test. So if I don’t, my positively negative brain wants to classify that as a failure.

And finally – I love my boss, I really do. And she really wants me to do well. So much that she’s been randomly popping over to my desk all week and asking me random practice test questions. She means well, but that’s starting to freak me out. Just a little.

So today I’m going to try and think as little as possible about this stuff. At least, until 2:30 when it’s showtime.

Wish me luck! And any suggestions on how to get my brain to dial back the stress level would be much appreciated!!

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Filed under Career path, Evaluations, working moms