"Love My Way, It's a New Road"

Archive for the ‘Work’ Category

I’m Making Changes 

For some reason, it seems like when I am truly ready to make some serious changes in my work life, I first have to change my environment.  This week I am taking a mini-break from my business development and work in general to completely renovate my home office.

I decided to tackle it when I got a pleasant sense of peace and accomplishment from cleaning my house.  For those of you who have read my rants about my dislike of housework, please don’t fall off your chairs. When I finished cleaning up the house, my mind felt rested.  It was an “ah ha” moment, and I realized I needed to channel that into my office.

I run my company out of the house.  Please don’t tell Crazy Lady because she has no clue what I do or that the HQ of Maggie & Co. is right next door. Anyway, it’s important to me to have a comfortable and organized office because it keeps my head clear.  I like a little mess but too much clutter weighs me down.

The first thing I did was to pull out all the paper clutter. All mail was opened and filed.  I shredded stuff until my shredder begged for mercy.  I filled my recycling bin. I put away a pile of stuff best described as “Doesn’t Belong in My Office”. I made piles of stuff that would stay according to various categories.  I have a bin of business journals by the TV to read. All that took the better part of a day.  My reward: an Ikea run last night and then a really fun hour measuring everything and laying it out on paper.

Today was one of brute strength.  I hauled in the heaviest Ikea bookcase of all time.  Then I built that damn Ikea shelving unit, rearranged all the furniture and now it’s time to put everything back in.  I have to go get a couple of things tonight (surge protectors and some lighting), but it’s all coming together nicely if I do say so myself.   The Hunter is quietly relieved to be missing it all.  

I’ve been doing all this between networking lunches and phone calls.  It feels great and I’m excited to get it all organized according to the vision in my head.  It’s a good feeling and I really needed the boost. Now I’m off to Target!

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Just Keep Breathing

Today isn’t a good day.  Actually the whole week hasn’t been a good one.  Anxiety is overtaking me this week.  Although I’m taking positive business development steps, these steps take time and I feel like I don’t have more time.  Anxiety has been running through me constantly.  I’m worried, frazzled and then to make things even that much worse — I’m not working.  Yes, I have made it to all my networking events and was charming and nice.  Yes, I answered all phone calls and didn’t send them to voice mail.  Yes, I answered a few emails, but I haven’t done the work.  I haven’t made the calls.  I haven’t sent out this week’s introductory emails, snail mail, post cards, etc. that are essential for my survival.

The Hunter just left for a 10-day hunting trip.  I think it’s a good idea that he’s not here.  Let me embrace my panic and react to it with strong action steps.  Let me control my schedule and not be at anyone’s beck and call but my own.  Let me work as hard and as much as I can so I can reset my activity level.  Let me take some Me Time and sit on the beach to think about where my life is and where I am going.

I think what set off my anxiety is a frienemy who just published a book.  I started my company a couple of months before him and we talked about his pending company launch.  His launch went much better than mine.  He kept several good clients.  He has a free office if he wants it.  He just wrote a fucking book, has it on Amazon and even produced a cool video trailer (using some stock footage, but production quality is excellent) and he’s doing podcasts and small videos regularly.  WTF — it makes me feel like a slacker.  It doesn’t help that the Hunter is connected to him on LinkedIn and sees the guy’s constant stream of contents.  It doesn’t help when the guy tells me he has 4,000+ LinkedIn connections.  It doesn’t help when the guy tells me that he has made some good connections through all of this.  It doesn’t help that we DIRECTLY compete.

I feel like I’m making excuses or downplaying the guy’s accomplishments when I say, “the podcast lost me in the 4th minute”.  Robin agreed, but still.  I also have my own point of view about social media marketing in my profession.  I do it, but I haven’t done the podcasts or videos. That’s something I aspire to, so this guy’s actual execution makes me feel like a slacker. I send out regular helpful content to potential clients and clients alike, so it’s not like I’m doing nothing.  I haven’t bought the book, but my GF said he got a ghostwriter — so what, the dude WROTE A BOOK.  He’s getting activity and people are reaching out to him through LinkedIn.  I’m not getting that type of response.  The Hunter teases me and tells me to step up my game.  At first I laughed.  Now it stings a bit.

I am not living the life I dreamed of when I first left my Ex.  I am taking steps to correct my financial course, but they aren’t bearing fruit as quickly as I want or need them too.  I feel a bit disconnected from my business community and although I am going to networking events, I’m not meeting the big fish.  I’m only catching guppies.  I realize that big fish require patience, persistence, timing and the right bait.  I know that intellectually but try telling that to my lizard brain at 3:00 am.  I am in a business of high rejection and I guess that this week it is getting to me.  I know the size fish I need to catch.  I know exactly how many fish I need to catch in order to survive and thrive.  Now I just have to remember what my coach tells me, “Action, action and more action.”

As the Hunter was preparing to leave this morning, I told him that I was anxious.  He has seen this before so I know that he was thanking his lucky stars that he was headed out of town as I enter a full blown mental state.  I told him that I realize that I’m running a marathon and I’ve hit that halfway point when everyone wants to give up, but I just have to keep running.  I know all of this, but it still doesn’t keep the knot in my stomach at bay.

I have to go.  I have yet another networking event but the good news is I am following it with Happy Hour with my girlfriends.   I have more of the same tomorrow — a lunch with peers and then another Happy Hour with my BFF.  Perhaps being around my friends will help.  At least it will keep me out of my head for a few hours.

Stinkin’ Thinkin’

I talked to Robin, my colleague, today and she said what I have been thinking all week. September is gone — a complete waste.  Between Labor Day, 2 weeks of Irmageddon and my pending vacation, the month is over.  It has created quite a bit of anxiety for me and a bunch of negative thoughts.  I have to get my taxes done and money brings up a tsunami of anxiety for me.  I just have to remember to take small bites of the elephant.  The Hurricane has given me an extension, but I probably will still have to pay taxes and I have no idea how I am going to handle that.  I’ll cross that bridge when I get to it.

I am taking steps to alleviate the anxiety.

  • Retail therapy:  I went clothes shopping yesterday and spent $$ I really don’t have on clothes and shoes that really made me happy.  This isn’t always the best solution, but I felt great afterwards and still felt good about it today as I sorted my new stuff to decide what to take on my trip tomorrow.
  • Book Club:  the ladies decided last minute that they would descend upon me since it was my turn to host the monthly meeting.  I had less than 24 hours to prepare and when you add in my 4 hours of retail therapy, I was under the gun to have a quasi-clean house, food and wine.  I pulled it off and ended up enjoying the evening.  I was a bit frazzled at the beginning, but with a glass of wine and interesting conversation, I calmed down quickly.
  • Planning:  I spent a lot of time contacting old, new and current clients to see if they needed any help after the storm.  I fixed by CRM to move all my tasks to new dates so that I don’t have to see all the Overdue ones.  I’ve been thinking about the steps I need to take for the remaining three months of 2017 to insure that 2018 will be extremely successful.

I need to get myself on some strong routines.  Routines are one of the things that separate extremely successful people from the rest of the pack.  I need to focus on self-discipline.  Once again, a trait of very successful people.  And patience.  That important quality that is in such short supply with me.  That and money.  Money is in short supply, so I better get back to work and hustle up some new clients.  Sigh.

The Hunter is Smart

This week I am in the trenches fighting.  I am doing the hard slog of defending my position, covering my rear flank and aggressively pushing forward.  I had a couple of brilliant ideas that are bearing fruit now and will be amazing in 2018.  But right now I am an Amazon warrior and not to be trifled with.  The Hunter found this out this week.

My son is wrapping up his internship and next week will be heading back to college.  He doesn’t like the Hunter.  Let’s not mince words.  They don’t have common ground and it’s clear that the Hunter and I fuck, which is definitely uncomfortable for adult children when they are living under the same roof.  We also didn’t help matters by not wanting his girlfriend to hang around here for days while he is working — too awkward when we are working from home.  My son is an introvert of the 9th degree, so sometimes you have to pry things out of him.

This week the Hunter got annoyed, then mad because my son doesn’t even talk to him.  Didn’t acknowledge him with a “Good morning” as he spoke to me.  I have to agree that my son was embarrassingly rude, which reflects poorly on me as his parent.  The Hunter wanted a big pow wow, but his timing was poor. I came home at 8:30 with the prospect of another 2 hours of work.  As I sat in the car to gather my thoughts, the garage door goes up and there is the Hunter.  He wants to have his confrontation NOW.

I look at him and his eyes are redder than a rose.  “Have you been smoking?”  He counters, “Why does that matter?”  I tell him that there will be no conversations with my son that night.  I have work to do and I am not doing this while he is stoned.  We will do this tomorrow, I tell him.

I march off to my office to crank out the necessary paperwork that is pending.  My son comes in and we chat about the situation.  It’s an awkward conversation for him, easy for me because I know his answers before he states them and we get it pretty much resolved/aired out.  He leaves for school in a week, we just need to get through these last couple of days.

The next morning I am bustling around to get out for a big meeting.  The Hunter and I begin talking and he gets mad that I already spoke to my son.  He’s walking out of the room as I am speaking, so I find myself yelling.  He walks back in “Are we fighting about your son?”  I said no, I am simply trying to explain my side.  I leave.  He sends me a text 30 minutes later about not giving him the opportunity to state his case.  Yep, that’s because it’s my son and that relationship trumps my relationship with the Hunter.  Instead I stay silent.  Which was the smart choice because I had a full day of arguing with attorneys and strenuously defending my position on a number of things.  I was full of piss & vinegar all day, so I knew better than to talk about anything with family when my Amazon is at full power.

He must have re-thought his position because he did some really nice things for me after that text.  He took my elderly Lhasa Apso to be groomed (which was long overdue), made a beautiful dinner, coaxed me out on a lovely bike ride and fucked me really good.  Smart man.  Smart man because the reason I had been late the night before was because I had a long bitch session with my BFF who is contemplating ending her relationship and moving the West Coast.  She and I were discussing the merits of her relationship and then my relationship.  We discussed the question of if I was done and when would be the appropriate time to pull the plug.  I’ll dissect that and write some more.  In the meantime, all is quiet here.  Everyone is playing nicely and I am kicking some serious ass in my business world. I got fucked great last night, so I feel wonderful.  Now, I need to put on my armor and get back out on the battlefield.

Still Rowing

It’s funny how my work is never a level line, but jumps up and down sometimes in the span of minutes.  I took some time to do a mid-year review to check on how things have been and how things are going.  It’s OK.  I’m not setting the world on fire, but I’m making consistent progress.  It’s a marathon, not a sprint I remind myself.

Last week I was feeling off, waking to a headache/slight migraine most mornings.  It took me a couple of hours to shake it off and I still felt icky the rest of the day.  I had a networking event at a business conference where I didn’t know a single soul and it was tough.  I met a couple of nice ladies, but for the most part, it was a bust.

Then in the rollercoaster of my work, I go back the next day for a luncheon, miss the keynote speaker, think the whole thing is a waste of $$ until I see one person I know.  Lo and behold he introduces me to someone great, we are meeting tomorrow and I see a potential series of speaking engagements.  Let’s see how that goes.

I guess I shouldn’t bitch and moan, but hey, it’s one of the reasons I have a blog.  I get a bit frustrated and impatient, but I think that’s normal.  I went to my Weight Watchers this week and the new leader asked for a one-word description of our July.  Mine was “undisciplined”.  I know the things I need to do.  I know I need a firm schedule.  That pertains to both work and weight loss.  Yet I don’t do it.  OK, I’m not in the horrible funk I was in last year and I am doing quite a few things correctly, but once again I am being hard on myself and feel like I’m not doing enough.

I did say “No” this week to an organization.  I have been sitting on the Board for years and now they asked me to run sponsorship.  Now?  When I am starting my own business, you want me to ask companies for money for you?  It’s not even a charity — it’s a professional organization with $100K in the bank.  Sorry, but I have to put my oxygen mask on first, thank you very much.  It felt good and I knew I did the right thing.

I am fine.  I just need to keep rowing because I am in the middle of the ocean with no shore in sight.  The only way to be successful or even just earn enough money to pay the bills and stay afloat is to keep on plugging away.

 

FlipFlops

I had another dream.  Let’s pause for a moment — I usually don’t remember my dreams, so the fact that I’m remembering my dreams this week is remarkable in itself, but back to our scheduled post.  The dream was about me in a group of folks, a business meeting/gathering of a sort.  We were milling around, looking at a very large, newly designed commercial space.  I remember looking at the ceiling — it was a cool design of two wooden squares constructed of beams — kind of like a pergola but inside some type of hip, lofty space.  The focus of the dream was my shoes or rather my flipflops.  I was having shoe issues — one broke.  It was all torn up and when I pulled it off, I realized that it wasn’t my shoe at all and I was relieved, but also like, “Hey, what the heck?!”.  So, hey, what the heck does that all mean?

Back to my internet searching.  In general, shoes represent your approach to life. If you are forgetting shoes (which was part of my dream), you are leaving behind your inhibitions and refusing to conform to some idea/attitude.  I would agree with that because, heck, I was wearing flipflops in a business setting!

To see old and worn shoes, indicates that you will find success through hard work and diligence.  You have come to terms about who you are. To dream about inappropriate shoes for the occasion means that your progress and path in life will be long, hard and laborious.  Amen, sister.  That I agree with 100%.  I think part of wearing someone else’s shoes is about conforming to other people’s old, outdated expectations.   It could also mean you are headed in the wrong direction….hmmm, nope, I don’t think that’s it.

To see flipflops in your dream indicates you are feeling relaxed and at ease….or maybe you are indecisive about some issue/decision.   Yesterday was a good day.  I had a meeting with a potential new client that at the end of the day isn’t going to generate income.  I probably shouldn’t have taken the meeting, but I was itching to get out of the house.  They were great, very interesting and although it won’t result in immediate wealth and riches, they are good people to know.  I also got a couple of meeting invitations — always a good thing.  I ended the day late, but feeling relaxed and productive. Hmmm, but was my subconscious thinking about flipflops because the Kracken destroyed one of the Hunter’s new ones?  Oh yeah, the Kracken wreaked havoc on one of his shoes.  Although I was sad for the Hunter, I also had a glimmer of malicious satisfaction thinking, “Yep, you left them out overnight.”

flipflops

Nope, these aren’t the Hunters, but my dream flipflops broke the same spot…but were all navy blue which is what I wear around the house.

Thank you, DreamMoods.   Now, a message to my subconscious — how about some sexy Freudian dreams?  That would be fun!  OK, enough shadow dancing, let me get back to my hard labor.

I Dreamed of a Black Snake

black snakeI had a very vivid dream last night about a black venomous snake.  The snake wasn’t hidden or slithering that much.  It was actually in a box and then it got out.  Other people around me were afraid of it and looking to me to handle the situation.  It was dangerous, I remember acknowledging that, but I felt in control of the situation and in charge of the snake.

The climax of the dream was that I was lying down preparing to go to sleep and the snake, which was still loose, comes up to me.  I open my eyes and it is by my face rearing up to prepare to strike.  I grab it behind its head and squeeze it tightly.  I get up and declare the I am going to kill this snake.  It no longer deserves to live, but I decide I won’t kill it.  I feel strong and powerful in my dream.  I woke up feeling like quite a badass.

What does all of this mean in my particular situation?  The Google wizards provided a host of websites and they provided some insight.

  • I’m sure it’s not Freudian — it’s phallic shape representing sex.  I am having some great sex but I’m not feeling temptation, repression or anything sexual.  This probably would have been a much more interesting post if it was sexual, so sorry, Dear Readers.
  • Snakes refer to hidden threats.  If the snake bites me then the dream is trying to alert me of something in my waking life that I am not aware of.  If I kill the snake, then this threat has passed or I have overcome it.  That’s interesting because apparently I am in the processing of overcoming it because I didn’t kill it, even thought I could???  I think this represents me controlling my anxiety, which I did last night by going to the gym and having a strong workout.
  • Snakes refer to fear ( and once again for me it’s that awful anxiety again).  They are unpredictable and can strike at any time without warning.  In this situation, the snake may represent something that is unpredictable or out of control.  I could be afraid of the unknown.  With my pipeline virtually empty of new clients (even though I have some great leads with some good potential but a very loooong timeline), I have been having anxiety about work, so I would agree with this.
  • Snakes can point to my creativity and potential (although I doubt that since I was squeezing it’s head and threatening to kill it).
  • Snakes tend to show up in dreams in times of transition and transformation.  A black snake is the dark power of deep transformations from my subconscious. The snake can indicate that I am in the process of healing and transforming.  I agree with this 100% since I am four years out from ending a 25-year marriage and now creating the life I want.
  • A black snake showing up in a dream means I am dealing with a difficult situation, unsettling emotions and I am having a power struggle in my waking life.  They can represent sadness and anxiety in my case.  This would be my work anxiety of late.  Absolutely agree 100% again.  Yesterday I was feeling a bit frustrated and anxious at the end of the day.
  • A key point is to remember is that a serpent in my sleep means I am symbolically receiving a wake up call from my subconscious.  
  • Black snake could be symbol of rejected aspects of my personality.  Points to a dimension of myself that has been avoided and needs to be exposed and dealt with.  Hmmm, that could be with my business development stuff and my relationship with money….
  • Black snakes represent a threat.  It could be challenging and I’m avoiding it.

I think that the snake is my anxiety and by not killing it, I am allowing myself to be anxious, but I am not allowing it to control me.  In conversations with Robin and my business coach today, I described my current state of affairs as being in the wide open ocean and I have to keep rowing because that is the only way to get to the shore.

So let me get back to rowing and kicking the ass of those black snakes…..

 

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