Friday, March 13, 2015

Real Talk: Stressin'

Just an FYI, it's about to get personal. 

This post may or may not be interesting to you. I've always been more expressive in writing than in voice conversations. I was suuuuper shy as a kid (and still am at times) and so jounaling/writing in my diary was my avenue for release.

I've disappeared from the internet world for quite some time. I've made the decision to seriously search for work. I've been searching for about 9 months now, but it was nothing serious. I was just looking for what was out there and what to expect, applying here and there.

In the last few months, I was aggressively searching for a new job.

This process in itself is just way too stressful for me. And here is why:

1. I don't know what I want
     <> I have no idea what my dream job is. I had an interview a few weeks ago and the interviewer asked me what my dream job was. I had no freakin' clue. (I did get a second interview though. YAY!)

2. I suck at interviewing.
     <> I am awful awful AWFUL at interviewing. No matter how much I "practice" my nerves get the best of me. I've tried deep breathing, praying, mantras...and I still suck at them. HOWEVER, I went on two interviews in the past three weeks where I was not nervous (that was a first!). And you know why I wasn't? I did not know if I wanted the job. Funny thing is, my uncertainty calmed me down. Me "not trying" too hard relaxed me. One was with a hospital and the other was with a dialysis center. I, for sure, thought the dialysis center was a no-go. The interviewer had "concerns" about my resume since my first job out of graduate school lasted only four months (I know, but it was a toxic environment! Unethical stuff I was not going to get in trouble for). To my surprise, I did my second interview this week with the dialysis center. And I fell in love with what they have to offer. I find out within the next two weeks if I get a third and final interview.

3. I am in love with my job 
     <> "Do people actually love their job or do they just love the people at their job?" is a question I have been grappling with all week. I love my job. I love the flexibility, the agency, the people, our mission, etc. People ask me, "Why are you leaving a job you love?" There are many reasons:
                    * Money. Working at a nonprofit means the pay is far from great. It's not enough to live comfortably, or well at least in my position. Part of me thinks, "I went to grad school to get paid this much?!" 
                    * Stability. The nonprofit world is a scary world because programs come from funding. When funding stops, you job terminates. I have been with my current placement for two years this 3/18 and every July, we get so anxious waiting for to see if we will be renewed for another year. It is nerve wrecking, absolutely nerve wrecking! As I get older and my boyfriend and I make plans to marry and have children, I do not want to be worried about money, about losing my job.

4. I am comfortable and fear change
     <> I am happy where I am at. I am comfortable. I enjoy the flexibility of being able to go to a doctor's appointment without calling off. My current workplace is 3 blocks from home (however, I am field-based which means I drive a ridiculous amount, sometimes 30 miles in a day just of traveling).  I am used to what I have and I am scared I won't have what I have now in the next adventure. Will I be happy at my new place, wherever and whenever that may be? Is this when work really just become a paycheck?

5. Burning bridges
    <> I love my current employer and my fellow employees. We've gotten to be so close, it's insane. My biggest fear is burning bridges with not only my boss, but also my peers. My boss has been increasing my role in the program and has me even doing two programs at once because she believes I can handle it. She had asked me to go to Colorado for a certified training that costs thousands of dollars so that I can train future staff. This got cancelled due to budgeting. She recently asked me to attend a one-day conference so that I can bring the information back to the team. As I have been making active steps to leave the agency, she is increasing my role and solidifying my presence. And I feel ever so guilty. But the truth is, I need to take those opportunities to excel. What if my job prospects don't even pan out. I've missed opportunities. Sometimes I am too honest. My honesty wants me to turn down these opportunities because she's investing in an employee who is making plans to leave. My closest coworkers have shared some of their most deepest, intimate parts of themselves with me. Am I supposed to give them a heads up I'm leaving? Do I just leave out of the blue? How does this work?? Help :( 

6. Over thinking, over analyzing, over stressing
    <> Perhaps I'm just over thinking the whole process and adding more stress to myself. Or maybe it's just jitters? As work gets more busy and I'm being put further along in the interviewing process, maybe I am just getting scared and nervous about the possibility of actually leaving? Having to actually tell my boss? Having to actually break it to my coworkers? 

I don't know. I really don't know. Yesterday, I was assigned a new case and I had a meltdown. My two closest coworkers took me to get ice cream as it solves everything. Little do they know (except for one of them) that my breakdown was from a mix of everything: work, looking for work, leaving, telling them I'm leaving.

Here I go, thinking way too much.

I know that if I take a step back, I should be grateful that this is my debacle. I could have bigger problems like not having enough food, shelter, basic needs...but still... It just sucks. I know life isn't easy, but sometimes I wish things were a little more clear. 

I suppose I shouldn't worry until I know I actually get a final interview and the job. Until then, I need to relax.

If you've read this far. Kudos. I wrote this more for me, for my peace, for my sanity. 


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