Wednesday, April 07, 2004

Chance is always powerful. Let your hook be always cast; in the pool where you least expect it, there will be a fish. -- Ovid (taken from Random Acts of Journaling)

In reading other people's blogs, mine suddenly feels awfully cold and listlike. Like a glorified dayplanner rather than a Journal. See, I get all shy about letting that stuff out in the "open," even though I know there's no one really out there. You know? So from hereon I pledge to write more introspectively.

Well, anyway, I came across that quotation and it is a perfect summation for my outlook on life. Well, one of them, anyhow. Even though I freak out about everything, overanalyze things and have too many breakdowns, I have to think that there is a reason for everything that happens. My life, and I presume other people's, is what it is because of a series of chance-like events. I took a huge leap by quitting my job, and things have really worked out amazingly so far. They always do; something will always come along. There are always fish.

One of the tools that AmeriCorps gave us was lots of opportunity to think about "Life After AmeriCorps." There was a booklet called "Next Steps" which detailed resume information and exercises to refine what skills you had and what skills you wanted to use, what kind of work you were looking for, and ways to start accomplishing those. It was fascinating and difficult. Here is what I wrote about "Values, Skills, Interests and Personal Considerations," regarding my ideal job, back in the latter half of 2002. There was a more specific prompt, something along the lines of, what kind of job do you want? what skills will you bring to the job? what are the requirements for the kind of job you want?

"I want a job where I can make a difference, where I can work in a variety of projects, both alone and cooperatively, where I can travel and meet new people, where I can be a leader and speak to audiences about exciting (to me) topics.
"I will bring to this job flexibility, an authentic and responsible manner, organization, trustworthiness and dedication; creativity, leadership/educating skills, and editing skills; a passion for public speaking, travel, and cultural appreciation.
"I love being able to speak in front of audiences, travel to new places and meet people. I am an Enterprising Social Holland type, one who likes to lead and work with people.
"I would love to relocate to a new community (but it's not a requirement), earn at least $23,000, and have adequate medical/dental/vision coverage."

Now, here is the list I made of qualities I wanted in a job for the immediate future, rather than the idealistic stuff above. I (grossly exaggerated) calculated that I would have $1800 in expenses per month, and so would need a salary of around $24,000. Ah, to be young and silly.

"Sustainable income--to support housing, food, car, entertainment
Don't need much professional experience
Can accommodate school
Not boring"

Quite the opposite set of criteria, eh? Two years ago, I knew that I had lofty goals but was willing to forgo them for the time being, just to get on my feet. I pretty much accomplished that one, and now I will pursue my real life goals. It's pretty amazing that the teaching fellowship and the team leadership both fit well into that goal statement (and will pay better!). That I've stuck to my guns, so to speak, and, in essence, followed a dream. I hope it's a good idea.

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