Monday, August 19, 2013

The Need to Make a Difference

Well, it's another Monday. I have plenty to do today, so of course I am going to procrastinate those important things by instead, resurrecting the blog. I already successfully invested 32 minutes in adjusting the layout, making a template change, tweaking things here and there, and then reliving some great moments of my blog past. Now it's time to get to work in earnest on my effort at delaying my work.

I have been unemployed for over a month. I spend lots of time worrying about that dilemma. And I spend a little bit of time every day actually doing something about it. The difficulty that I find is that I don't really know what I want to do next. I know it involves getting paid, and it most likely involves doing some sort of work for others that delivers value, which would lead back again to the "getting paid," but I don't really have many more specifics than that, you know, nailed down right now.

There are three paths that I'd like to follow:
1. I'd love to be an author. That would entail finally finishing my 80,000 word novel that I've been "secretly" working on for over 7 years. This seems like the most awesome, but also the most risky of my paths. Mostly because I would have to finish the novel, then get it to somebody that would want to publish it, then get lots of people to want to buy it and read it; all of which seem like lofty, ungrounded dreams to me at this point.

2. I'd like to go back to school for my PhD in Marketing. I have learned over my "long" career that what I really love doing is to figure out little puzzles and come up with clever, researched solutions. Then, I like sharing the case study of those puzzles I helped solve with others, usually in a presentation, report, case study, or client training. For a few years now I've been able to do that stuff in the guise of an Advertising Man, where it took the form of consulting, campaign planning, and client trainings. But I've since realized that these are also the things that marketing professors get to do most days, only they call the consulting "teaching" and they call their paying clients "students." And the results are quite similar.

3. I'd be happy to have a new job where I get paid to go to work and do something that I'm good at. The key for me is that, if I leave ad agency, I need to feel like I'm climbing up a new ladder. That I'm somehow starting something with a long-term, big picture-type of trajectory. Something that makes sense with what I've done and what I'm trying to do. I know it sounds selfish and that I may come off like a petulant child, but I don't want to have to go to work every day! And I need to feel like I'm getting more out of my investment of time and energy than a bi-weekly paycheck and a few paid vacation days. I need to be making a difference.

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