Posts Tagged ‘goal’

Warning! Woman at Work

Warning! Woman at Work

Construction Worker at Westlake Center 1988 courtesy Seattle Municipal Archives, Creative Commons License

I had a meeting with my boss today, and she asked me what my career goals were, as reviews are coming up.

Well, I took the job to become a home owner because my acting degree didn’t come with a sugar daddy and I hear hooking’s illegal here in Canada so… yeah, career goals.

Honestly though, I’m a go-getter. I excel at things. I’m one of those annoying people who can do just about anything, and do it pretty well, too. Even more irritating (to me) is that I can see myself doing just about anything. It makes choosing stressful (I know luxury problem, but still).

Now that I’m working for a big company with room to grow, people expect me to have career goals beyond “Make car payment this month” and “Invest in house in fall winter spring.”

So in a company with fairly limitless options, and me with almost limitless potential, what the heck do I want to do?

And do I really want to do anything?

Because if I stop thinking of this job as a job, as a means to an end, as that place where they keep my paycheque, as that thing I must endure (almost) painlessly to be able to achieve my dream of homeownership, and uh, food… Then I am committing to a community and claiming it for my own.

Then those people I work with become those colleagues with whom I create products.

Those “work friends” might actually become work friends, and I might know these people for years – have barbecues with them, invite them to housewarmings, and baby showers, and – oh my god, I’ve married my work.

I really don’t think I’m a huge commitment-phobe, but my paid ambitions lie buried with my acting career. I want the house and the family – not the boardroom and the politics – right? I said, right?

Alright, I know I can have both. OK? Especially since I’m not engaged, not likely to get pregnant anytime soon, and have masses of brains wasting away in data entry – well, not so much wasting, as attempting to find ways to improve the systems and think my way out of a job… Details.

And having the higher paying job that committing to career-like ambition offers would make home-owning and family-having easier in the long run.

And I could still think of it as a job, right, just that thing I go and do for a third of each weekday? And I don’t have to make bffs 4ever with everyone there, I can simply be polite and encouraging and helpful and me – and leave them all at 5:00, right?

Or I could grow a little. Grow up a little, and embrace the adult-y-ness of the whole situation, and realize that I am not a student, not a starving artist, not actively living those lifestyles anymore, but that doesn’t mean I can’t be part of those communities, while taking on new ones.

Or does it? Do I have to be a starving artist forever in order to relate to other starving artists who are both actively starving and actively artistic? If I keep the money, but fingerpaint on weekends, does that count? What if I keep the money, but fingerpaint, and generate an eating disorder? OK, whatever, I really like food, so that’s not gonna happen.

But, honestly, as your identity grows and changes, sometimes passions and communities leave you – does that mean you have to leave them?

When do you have to no longer self-identify as something? Is there a time when you ever must?

I don’t know the answers, but I do know this:

I am an actor. It is not what I do, it is what I am.

And I know that doesn’t help me with my present quandary of corporate career goals…

What do you think? Can you help? What advice would you give, or have you gotten in this type of circumstance? Let me know!

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The First Step

Do you think after the first step, I'll just be able to ride on up to the next level?

Escalators courtesy TeddyBear[Picnic]/FreeDigitalPhotos.net

Tomorrow Night (yes, capitals) I am going out with not only one girl friend, but two!

I know, everyone is very proud.

I’m having supper with one, and then meeting the other at a bar where more of our friends are playing (they have a band).

I’m a little nervous.

I mean, it’ll be fine, totally. Except that the last time I saw the one friend, I ended up crying about the state of Dashing and I in the middle of a restaurant, and the last time I saw the other, I offended her by being, well, me, and not thinking about the words I use while speaking (another plus of blogging!).

Mostly I’m nervous because when I get around people, I get excited. And when I get excited, I tend to get a little, um, EXCITED. I chit-chat-chitter away, speaking without filter, and then I end up spilling all my secrets (I can keep other people’s secrets, just not my own), which leads to crying. I cry. I’m a cry-er.

I didn’t cry for something like ten years, and now, I cry. Most often when angry or frustrated.

But anyway, I’m nervous about getting EXCITED and crying. Again. And talking too quickly and offending people. AGAIN.

But these are my friends, right? These are my people, the community I’m trying to preserve, right? We are there to support each other, and they know me. They usually find my quirks endearing, refreshing, even… right?

But what if…?

There’s a lot at stake, and I have to trust that it will get easier. The first step is always the hardest – it’s why I talk myself out of it so often.

Deep breath. Wish me luck!

How do you get over the hurdle to take a first step? Is it easy to trust your friends? To trust yourself? What do you think?

How to Keep Friends: A Social Experiment, Part I

What's wrong with a little social experimentation?

Blue And Red Flasks courtesy posterize/FreeDigitalPhotos.net

OK, I’ve talked about how little I know about this here, and here.

But here comes the social experiment part. I’m going to list five methods I’m going to try to reconnect with my existing community, and I’ll let you know how they go.

1. Facebook

I’ve talked about how exhausting it is to come home after staring at a computer screen for eight hours and feel like you have to look at another one just to contact, oh, anyone… but since I’ve actually managed to blog fairly regularly lately (yay, me!), I think I can manage a couple of hours per week of skulking into my friends personal lives to figure out what they’re up to. So my goal is to go onto Facebook at least once a week, and to not only creep their lives but to change a picture, update a status, poke someone to let them know that I am alive and reaching out.

2. Engaging Phone Conversations

I’ve talked about how I hate the phone, and I do. It’s very useful as a tool, but for contact, well, it’s a cold, plastic box.

So, my goal is to move beyond my hatred, and when people call me to engage them in interesting conversation, instead of my usual “OK, got the info, gotta go” routine.

This is actually really huge because it will force me to think about my day and come up with interesting things to say, instead of feeling like nobody’s interested because if they were, they’d already know what my day was. Which, bullsh*t. Really.

3. Organizing Outings

My hope is that eventually these will become more routine so that they take less organizing and so that others maybe think to invite me out once in awhile.

To start, at least once every two weeks I will go out, for supper or drinks, or to watch the band, with at least one of my friends, and in this instance, Dashing does not count (because I would go to the moon every day for that man, it’s embarrassing, really).

4. Holiday Cards

Nothing says reconnection like the annual catch-up of holiday cards. I’ve never done them on a large scale. This year, I will, to all and sundry. I’m talking researching mailing addresses, old-school letters enclosed, stamps and envelopes Holiday Cards. I should probably start in the next couple of weeks.

5. Downtime

For a lasting change, I can’t just do a complete 180 and hope it sticks, like I’ve done before. So if I need a night or two (or five) to myself, that is OK. If I miss calling someone back, that is OK. If three weeks go by and I haven’t gone out at all, that is OK, but I should start thinking about it soon at that point.

This part is the trickiest, because while it is important to take time to oneself, for a hermit like me, it can be oh so tempting to live there. But friendship is a two-way street and I have to have faith that once my friends know I want more time with them, that they’ll be happy to oblige. I have to give them the chance, and trust that they’ll come through for me.

Those are my five, for now. By no means is this a comprehensive list, but I think it’s a pretty good starter list.

What do you think? What would you add/take away? If I manage to achieve these goals, what should be on my next list?

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