I quit my job

That’s not a joke. The job that I said I was enjoying in my last post went from fun to chore to pure torturous hell in the matter of one month. Yes, you read that correctly, one month. What started this you ask? Well, I can’t talk about that yet. There is some legal stuff going on with that, but stay posted for the BIG explanation as for the past five weeks I have written down my life day by day to help me cope with what happened.

Anyway, back to the here and now. I was done. My boss and I were no longer on the same page and I was so stressed each day that it made the anxiety from the event that shall not be named (yes, I did just reference Harry Potter) so bad that I was constantly having to take more and more anti-anxiety meds and muscle relaxers. I spent a lot of time reflecting after the event, on my life and where I was and was I *really* happy or had I just accepted that maybe the best I could ever do was be content with where I was. Yes brain, you were correct, I had just accepted that I was content with where I was and what I was doing so that was okay. WRONG. Oh g-d was I wrong.

So what did I do? I started applying to other jobs, and when I say other jobs I mean I must have sent in about 100 applications. Yes, you read that correctly 100 applications. I was desperate, and I knew my boss was not happy with me any longer either. I was so miserable I just didn’t care, which was not good for me or their business. I didn’t say a word to anyone, I just kept the smile on my face, went in each day and did the bare minimum of work I had to do and then left. I was tired. I was done with the business, but then something else happened. I was at work and on Valentine’s day one of my employees called out. He was sick and sent me a doctors note and everything, it’s Valentine’s day so no one is coming in to cover his shift obviously, so we started calling clients to reschedule them. Most were understanding and nice about it, but then there was one who decided that because his plans were ruined that I got to be the focus of his anger.

Now, I was used to clients being angry and needing to vent, that is easy enough to deal with, hell, I need to do it occasionally too, but this man took it to a level that crossed all boundaries. Within minutes of the call being passed to me from my manager out front, I was called stupid, retarded, told I didn’t know how to do my job, that I should be fired and so should the employee that called out, that I need to get another employee to come in to cover and that I was even more of a retard for not having people on call on a holiday. I warned the man that if he did not watch his language with me that I would end the call, that there needed to be a respectful conversation. His response, “then end the call you f*cking c*nt.” So I did. I hung up and the immediately called my boss to tell him what happened. I gave my boss the man’s information and then thought it was over with.

A few minutes go by and my manager who had originally taken the call comes into the my office and closes the door because the man who had just been on the phone decided to drive over to us to continue. When he stepped outside to take the call from my boss I was grateful, my boss would send him on his way and that would be that. My front manager tells me he said similar things to her so she was uncomfortable being out front with him there. We both stayed in the office. When my boss called me back, he told me that I was to put credits on the man’s account and his wife’s account that in total probably equalled out to about $300. That was when I was done. I had told him what this man had said to me and my employee and instead of telling the client that he couldn’t speak to us that way, he let us become dirt. I equate it to a parent rewarding a toddler when they throw a tantrum, you give them what they want so next time they do it, they know they will get what they want again by throwing another tantrum.

It was at that moment I checked out completely from my job. I actually refused to talk to any clients, which I admit was NOT the way to go about it, but if my boss was going to treat me that way, then he could deal with the clients and I would just sit there and make sure the building did not burn down. Cue more applications being filled out. It is good to note at this point that my fiance is also having problems at his job, has been since before the ‘event’ took place so he is also looking for new employment. So me just walking out with no job lined up was NOT an option. Then it happened, I finally got a call back. It was for an executive assistant position, after talking with the HR woman about my salary needs, she decided I would be a better fit for a different position and would forward over my resume and would call me back. I kind of took it as a blow off, okay, they can’t pay me what I need to make, on to the next I guess.

But then, she called me back, they wanted me to interview the next morning. So what did I do? I went shopping and bought new business clothes (it actually felt nice to be professionally dressed and not just in a polo and yoga pants), I made sure to cover my tattoos and decided that it was time to ditch the lip ring after 8 years (RIP lip ring, you will be missed). I went in the next morning to interview jittery, it has been almost 2 years since I had to interview for a job after all, but instantly relaxed when meeting the HR woman and the woman who would be my direct supervisor.

After introductions were made, the HR woman laid it out very clearly for me, on paper I was perfect, the interview was basically just to make sure I wasn’t some psychopath. This made me more nervous, the entire job rested on my personality alone? Shit. Just kidding, it went great. They said they would need me to start immediately if hired and I told them I would quit without notice (not my usual style, but I wanted out of my current position). They made me sweat it out though, they had a few other people they were interviewing and would call me the next day. So I waited as patiently as I could, my interview was at 9am so I had a VERY long day of waiting.

The next morning I had just woken up and was starting to get ready for work (this would have been Friday, which used to be my Monday) and barely after 8am I got the call. I had the job and I was starting Monday at 8am. Holy shit. I did it. I got out, not only did I get out, I got a job that not only pays a lot more but that actually uses my education and passions as well! Next thing on my agenda, resignation letter. I made it as professional as I could and sent it off to my boss and then danced around my house as I collected anything I needed to turn in to work. I decided that that day would be my last, give me a few days before starting to relax and do some shopping for office clothes and what not.

Let me tell you, going in that morning was NOT what I expected. My boss was already there and he was not happy about my no notice quit. The conversation though was thankfully short, but instead of working that last day, he sent me on my way. I can’t really blame him, I was his only manager who knew everything back and forth, front and back. He could barely log into his own email without my help some days. I know they will be fine there though, they have great junior managers that I hired and trained that will keep the front working well. I am sure there is already crazy gossip going around about me there because that place thrives on that stuff, but I am so happy to be gone that I don’t even care about it.

So here I am, getting ready to do my hair and get ready for my first day as an assistant events coordinator, I get to travel around the US and Canada helping plan events…what does that all entail, I really don’t know yet, I guess I will find out in 2 hours when I start. But that is why I quit my job. I quit because I was tired of just being content and not being happy. The second I quit I didn’t have to take any medications anymore, the anxiety (other than the anxiety of starting a new job) went away, the pain went away and now I feel like I can really focus on myself and where I need to be in life.

Stay tuned, I will let you know how my first day went and hopefully soon I can tell you about the event that shall not be named.

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Being Silent….

I read an interesting blog today, about how being a silent reader constrains the ability to gain traction in the blogosphere. It got me thinking, why am I so silent on here? I post frequent enough, I read enough and always give likes to posts that I enjoy, but very very very rarely do I ever stop and take the time to leave a comment, and thus have put myself into the category of silent reader, but as the writer of this other post asserts, did I unintentionally constrain myself by not becoming talkative on other blogs?

The answer to this is simply, yes, I did. Just maybe not for the same reasons that are pointed out by this other blogger. Working as a social media specialist for several companies (yay freelance work!) I write anywhere from 7-10 blogs a day for companies while at the same time responding to messages and comments and likes on those blogs. At the end of the day, I get to my own blog and find myself not only slightly unmotivated to write, but also completely overwhelmed by the amount of engagement I dealt with throughout the day and instead of engaging my readers as well as my fellow readers of blogs I follow, I casually scroll through reading posts that, though I find interesting, I am out of energy and commitment to blogging to write comments.

This of course does very unintentionally put huge constrains on myself as a blogger (at least, for my personal blog, my clients are set for life on engagement). The blogger of this post also pointed out that he (along with countless others) were very late to the blogging party and have thus found themselves in a sort of limbo, or in his terms, the cool kid tables and the not so cool kid tables have already been established. Where do you and I fit into this then? The people who enjoy reading blogs but decide writing comments is just not for them or do not have the time, or maybe you just don’t have anything to say really on the subject even though you did enjoy the post.

Limbo, that is where it puts us until we unequivocally make a change in our mindset to not allow ourselves to be labeled. I do not see myself as in limbo as to what table I will sit at, I see myself sitting down and starting my own table, of those who just recreationally enjoy writing blogs, reading blogs but not having to pressure ourselves into engaging other bloggers if we do not feel the need to. Of course, this does put us at a huge disadvantage when it comes to gaining followers and likes, because what better what to get noticed then to post comments to attract that blogger to you, and anyone else who reads and enjoys the comments may come along as well.

Do I need to break the mold to be a great blogger? No, not really. Does what I write need to be the most originaly in the world? Not at all. Do I need to comment on every single blog I read to start more of a follow? Possibly. Maybe not every blog I read, but I think it is time that I get up the energy to not only engage readers on my clients blogs, but on my blog as well. To do this, I’ve decided to not put off my own blogging until the end of the day anymore, from now on, my blog will be the first thing I do every morning. Whether this means writing a new post and engaging in comments on the blogs I follow or just the later of the two, I do plan to engage a little more for my own personal blog.

This does not mean that I will be commenting on every blog I read. That is WAY too many comments even for someone who blogs for companies professionally and responds to every comment (even if it is just a generic Thank you for commenting). It does mean that a few comments on blogs that I find really interesting is needed though. No one should feel forced to comment, no one should ever feel forced to do anything really, but if you like the post, leave a quick comment not just a generic like. If you enjoy the post give that person a follow also, I know I always follow back when I gain a new follower and I usually find that their blog extremely enjoyable for me.

Well, time to switch into professional blogger mode, hope you all read this and take the steps needed to stop being the silent reader and make your own voice heard and seen a bit more.

 

~SKG

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Being a Storyteller Could Be Your Greatest Asset

By my previous posts, it is easy to see that I enjoy writing. Though I have mentioned it in passing, I have not fully explored my love of digital media marketing or how my two passions combine. Blogging is a part of what I do for a living, and no, this is not about to turn into a “how to be a better blogger” post. This post is to fully explore the connection between my job, my love of writing, my success in academics with my writing and my ability to keep an audience compelled during a speech. You see, it all comes down to one thing, my ability to tell a story. With my degrees in Communication Studies Rhetoric, I have basically been trained to be a polished speaker and writer, I even taught Public Speaking at the University level while in my Graduate program. I heard speech after speech after speech and though my students and peers were very good at following the templates that they were taught and could easily follow to pass the class. Problem with these template driven speeches? Even as the instructor it took every once of self discipline I had not to lose focus during all 75 of my students speeches. Mind you, I love listening to speeches that are done by famous politicians, writers etc… I rarely remember what the speaker says (besides maybe one or two key phrases that the speech is designed around) but I always remember that distinct feeling I have when I walk away from listening to a speech. Why is this? Why do I never fully remember what was said, but I remember how I felt and the feeling that I needed to take some kind of action. It is a very simple trick used by well practiced speakers, writers and even marketing professionals today. It is the simple art of storytelling.

Storytelling seems easy on the surface, you have a beginning a middle and an end. Simple right? Not so much when you realize that it is not just a simple story anymore. The princess can not just meet prince charming and run off into the sunset anymore. There needs to be drama and intrigue and mystery and action. There also needs to be imagery, metaphors and hyperboles. Without these things and much, much more a story is just a sequence of events that occurs. The dull transmission of information from one person to another is not very valuable anymore.

The ability to tell a story has taken me very far. In academics I was able to turn dull 25+ page papers into compelling, intriguing rhetorical analyses without even batting an eye. I passed through my speech classes, debate classes and argumentation classes on sheer ability to make my audience remember me with my story telling abilities. As this ability carried me through undergraduate and graduate school, I was also secretly working on my novel. My novel has become my hobby and passion now that I am out of school. It is probably the one thing that keeps me sane after I work a fourteen hour work day I always know I can go home and escape into the fantasy land of my story. As frustrating as it is that my story is still only about three-fifths of the way done, it keeps me going during a hard day knowing I have something enjoyable to go home to work on.

My blog has spent a great deal of time focusing on my writing endeavors and not much discussing my actual work. Marketing, specifically digital media marketing. Though I can do traditional public relations and communications work, I so much prefer the realm of digital media and especially content marketing. Content creation is the simply the act of writing copy for a multitude of mediums. I have done everything from running Facebook and Twitter accounts to creating, designing and creating the content for entire websites. I even blog for a lot of my clients. What does all this have in common with my novel, my academic writing and speeches? Simple, storytelling is again key in content marketing. Just like in academic and creative writings my content creating needs to tell a story. Whether it is about the brand I am writing for, a product or service they are selling or about one of the employees for that brand, it is essential for me to evoke my talent as a story teller to make sure anyone who reads what I write for that brand goes away with a definite (and hopefully positive) feeling about that brand. A feeling that will drive them to do business with that brand as well. If I simply convey information about the brand to its audience, it is does not have that great of an impact. I need to make the person reading my content feel a desperate need for the product or service of the brand it was written for/about.

I think my entire life has been leading up to being a digital media public relations professional. My speech background, my writing experience and my overall passion for storytelling have set me up for success in my chosen field. Being a storyteller expands beyond just books and speaking. It encompasses almost every aspect of every day life. Movies, music, TV shoes, commercials, advertisements, tweets, Facebook posts, blogs, newspapers and much more are all examples of how storytelling is used to entertain us on a daily basis and make us feel certain ways about the world around us. Stories are meant to have us sympathize or empathize with certain people, places and things. If you can master the art of story telling, you can really master the world.