Friday, 29 July 2011

The dog done bit me

I have a yellow dog called Jealousy.  Usually she sleeps quietly in the corner in a patch of sunlight, no problem to anyone.  Yesterday she bit me in the stomach while I wasn't looking, so quick I didn't see her coming.  In the middle of a conversation with a friend.



Friday, 15 July 2011

Hello....has anyone seen my career?

At an event last night I got chatting to a man seated near me.  He was a coach and he asked me what I did.  I explained that I was in transition from a career in Finance via theatre management to...well I wasn't sure yet.  Apart from saying (as they all infuriatingly seem to) "you do know what you want to do", he also questioned my approach.  It seemed to him that trying out different areas, experimenting and experiencing different possible options meant that I was likely to just become lost.  He also questioned my ability to network if I didn't have a ready elevator pitch and a title to put on my business cards.

I do understand that it's much easier to sell a product if you're clear what the offer is.  However, I defend this period of uncertainty, of ambiguity, and yes, of being lost.

Being lost and seeking is infinitely preferable to being lost and miserable in a well paid soul destroying job.

Thursday, 7 July 2011

The Power of Language

I posted something recently on Facebook about the pleasure I was finding in my job now that I've decided long term it's not for me.  Once the decision was made, I started enjoying it more.  I relaxed into it.  It wasn't so important and laden with meaning so I performed better and had fun with it.  Yegads, I even became more creative.  Why, I lamented, was it only when I've decided to let something go, that I start firing on all cylinders?  Wouldn't it be wonderful to experience that sense of freedom and fun without leaving jobs, relationships and even, in my case, countries?

For decades people have been telling me to "relax, stop being so uptight/intense, let go".  Do you know how unhelpful this is for an uptight person?  Does it help?  Of course it doesn't.  We know we need to relax and let go; what we we don't know is how.  And being self-critical souls, we flagellate ourselves and get more uptight because we know we should let go and we can't.

I have been working on this (note working on, not relaxing into) for much of the last year and I am getting better at it.  But I am still a words person.  And language is important.

John Purkiss (he of Brand You fame) posted this in response to my FB rant "Sounds like letting go to me. Much more fun than clinging/attachment. :-)"

Bingo!  Clinging.  Now isn't that the most unappealing word for describing attachment, hanging on, not letting go and generally being an uptight so and so?

I only have to think of the word and I loosen my grip.  Not on reality, folks.  On whatever I've been attaching inordinate amounts of meaning to.

Clinging - my new antidote word.

Sunday, 3 July 2011


OK, so I'm now at stage whatever (I've lost count) of my change process.  I really want to know what to do next, as my savings slowly deplete and a new career in arts administration is not a long term option.  I can satisfy my love of dance and quirky theatre by going to the shows; I don't get a big enough kick from being part of the support system to stay.

I've been toying with the idea of training in psychology/counselling and spent this weekend at a free coaching weekend designed to fire up attendees and sign us up for coach training.  It was fun and interesting and I met some great people.  The spark, the buzz, the "ooh, that's for me" wasn't there.  I could do it and almost feel I should do it because I need an income and I enjoy facilitating.  The relentless focus on goals and the "rah, rah" chirpiness of the trainers left me cold and I couldn't see myself in their shoes and being delighted by it.  I was disappointed and a little frustrated that another potential door seemed to be closing.

As part of this afternoon's session, we did a visualisation excercise.  As always, I was able to picture my environment, my partner, the views, the pets, the company.  The "work" wasn't there.  So, it seems, what I want to be is a rich hippy, living in a place in the country big enough for a few waifs and strays.

Is this a goal?  Is it achievable?  What steps can I take today to make it a reality?  Does it matter?

On the train home I opened John Parkin's "F**k It - the ultimate spiritual way".  The book fell open to a section called Say Fuck It to Plans and Goals.  I read it, then looked out of the window at the glorious Sussex countryside the rest of the way home.

F**k It
      F**k It
           F**k It