Tag Archives: careers

Time to Cry Tuesday – Launching

launchingIt is always a good idea to leave your comfort zone, zip code, generation, cultural norm… anywhere that makes you see the world through a lens that is too similar to your own. Homogeneity breeds tunnelvision.

Like most, I socialize with people who are within my age-group and life stage, give or take 10 years. Most people do, I suppose. But this weekend I had the delightful experience of having 2 meals with a combination of 6 20-somethings, all in different stages of launching. The fact that they are among my favorite people on earth made it even better. Oh and 3 of them were blood relatives, the other 3 being the next best thing.

Listening to their plans, goals, opportunities… their exuberance, their joy, their energy… it was all so inspiring. And refreshing. And made me not only remember what life was like at that age, but to look back and realize what a wild ride it has been since then. They all genuinely respect our opinions, look to us as sounding boards. They have crossed over from the know-it-all teens to respectful young adults who want input. Not a single one had that millennial attitude that we hear all too often.

They are all still fresh, unspoiled. They have not yet been burnt or battered. But they will be at some point, everyone gets some piece of life’s not so pretty parts. But I am confident they will all take it with grace. They are built that way. I have seen each one of them navigate some tough things this past year and they all rose to the occasion.

We live in exciting times. I am envious of the climate that allows them to start their careers when so much is possible. Creating a business from scratch is not only possible, but the initial outlay of cash is minimal and access to funding a reality (think kickstarter, etsy, quirky, angel investors). These 6 are all so very different. Their career paths are equally different. Perhaps that is what makes the energy between them so exciting.

For now, it was simply lovely to be in their presence. To feel them shine. To bask in their opportunities. To be proud and inspired at the same time.

Next weekend? Sky diving? (probably not)

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Filed under carreers, family

The Peckerhead Theory

Do you have a job where you have to count on others? Do you subcontract often? Do you deal with regular suppliers? Does the performance of other people reflect on how well you look to your client base? If not, lucky you.

In my house… this is a daily occurrence. For the most part we have built our careers around working with people we trust. We partner with teams and vendors that have the same work ethic and philosophy that we do. But somehow the ever-changing business landscape has made even those with the best intentions unable to fulfill their promises.

Or sometimes you are just dealing with peckerheads. (if you guessed that this was a Gary description, you have probably been reading this blog for some time – remember, this is the same guy who uses the expression ‘I don’t give a rat’s ass’). 

Today I wrapped up the first phase of a big project with a team that made me so proud to be the lead on this project. As we were doing a recap and planning our next stage I took a moment to thank them… in my own special way:

“I just wanted to let you know how much I appreciate your passion, wild talent and dedication to making this project the best it can be. In short, I want to take a moment and thank you from the bottom of my heart for NOT being peckerheads”.

Blank stares. Awkward moment.

Then I explained Gary’s peckerhead theory and everyone was all ‘OMG I know what you mean’ and ‘I could not possibly do anything less than my best’ and ‘When you love what you do it is easy not to be a peckerhead’.

Sometimes you eat the bear. Sometimes the bear eats you. Just make a vow to NEVER be the peckerhead and you will be just fine.

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Filed under humor, the new workplace, work, work habits

Time to Cry Tuesday – Success

Before I begin this post I must point out Jana’s comment on yesterday’s hamster post. “You forgot to mention how after she died we kept her in a shoebox in the outside refrigerator for over a month before we got a chance to bury her.” Yes, we did actually freeze the dead hamster in the garage freezer in a box that was clearly marked. From what we can remember the ground was too frozen to bury her so we ‘stored’ her in our little makeshift morgue… next to the frozen waffles. Ok, maybe a bit quirky, I will admit that. (see below on raising non psycho kids)

silosuccess-mugThese crazy economic times have made so many people re-evaluate the meaning of success. Honestly, if I hear one more person bring up this topic I will be tempted to poke them in the eye. So I would fully understand your disgust if you don’t want to read my 2 cents here (or should I say my 1.25 cents with the state of the market).

Nowadays, flat is the new up (thank you to my financial friends who brought this to my attention). Poor is the new rich. So how do we begin to reconcile the true meaning of success when everywhere we hear stories of people who have worked their whole lives, lived prudently and saved only to find themselves nowhere near the comfort level of security that they imagined. Or worse.

Let me redefine success. 

Today’s definition of success is the ability to keep one step ahead. To continue to plug away and make it work. To love what you do, or at least not hate it, even if it is not as financially lucrative as it once was. To think creatively of new ways to make your life full instead of filling your life. To be truly successful is to take stock in what works in your life and be grateful for that . As my Nana used to say, to look at those below you instead of those above, for there are many more in worse shape.

To have raised healthy productive children (translation: kids who are not psychos in spite of our child-rearing techniques). To maintain a marriage not only in the good times, but in the tough ones (translation: to not kill one’s spouse with a butter knife in their sleep). To be a good friend to those in need and know how to lean when you need the help (translation: know who will be available to drive you to the emergency room – thanks again Rik).

In short, the doom and gloom could kill you way faster than the actual situation can.

So lighten up everyone. Panic never helped the situation. 

How do you define success? (Tip: net worth comments will be scoffed at here)

Haven’t had enough of me yet? You can also read me at Mid-Century Modern Moms and at 50-Something Moms Blog.

For photo enthusiasts, visit Leaving the zip code, photos from outside the comfort zone.

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Filed under carreers, current events, stress, Time to Cry Tuesdays, work