Monthly Archives: May 2011

To The Left, To The Left

Everything I own (in my office) is in a box to the left. And to the right. And some of them are still flat because this doesn’t help me:

But the point of this post is that Beyonce, infinitely wise, said it best“Don’t you ever for a second get to thinking you’re irreplaceable.” 

In her song, Beyoncé is of course referring to her no-good ex-boyfriend she is kicking out for being untrue and not appreciating the Jag she bought him. Since JB doesn’t buy me Jags (rude), I don’t relate to that part. However, leaving a job is an astute reminder about just how replaceable we all are.

Clearly, I never believe my absence anywhere is going to shut down production. I am pretty sure my bathroom floor is learning to self-clean due to months of neglect. But there is a humbling feeling when you realize the meetings, the plans for next year, the committees, and everything else will be going on just peachy without you. And colleagues are excited about these plans — even though I won’t be there!

Even while cleaning out my files, I find it so hard to throw away old documents. As if, surely, at some point, someone in the office will need my notes about the random meeting I attended two  years ago. Won’t they?? As I fill up the recycle bins, I know the answer is that they have their own notes and the paper trail proof of my existence is diminishing. (You also never know what you might find when you clean out your office.)

Obviously, the meetings, the committees and the excitement of plans to come should absolutely forge ahead. Any first-year Psych 101 student could tell you that this is about my own feelings of leaving my professional nest. Of wondering what I will be missing, of already feeling like an outsider. Luckily, I have a great new opportunity to look forward to. Soon enough, I’ll be part of new meetings, making new plans and wondering why there are so many committees.

But for these last few days, I’m just going to enjoy the familiarity and the goodbyes. I’m also going to enjoy the ocean because I’m going on vacation, in case you’re wondering why you haven’t heard from me. Remember, I’m fragile, I have to pretend you will notice my absence!

In other news, I have realized in writing this post that I can’t wait for a Beyoncé greatest hits album.

Have you ever been reminded that you are “replaceable?” Where do you feel irreplaceable?

It’s So Hard To Say Goodbye (And My Guest Post!)

In my job as a career counselor, I (along with other bloggers) often link the job search and networking to dating. College students can understand this analogy.

And just like networking is similar to courting,  leaving a job is a lot like a break-up. I recently gave notice at my current university after five great years. This is the first time I have changed jobs for no other reason than a new opportunity. The two previous resignations were expected — I was moving cities and I was starting a brand new career path.

This move is the same career field, just a different type of position at a new university. My colleagues and supervisors have been so supportive of this opportunity, for which I am eternally grateful. And like any nervous dumper fumbling for the right thing to say when announcing their goodbye, I heard myself resorting to a variation of some of the classics:

  • I wasn’t actively looking for this to happen. It just did.
  • It’s not anything you did, it’s me.
  • This just feels like the best thing for me at this time.
  • You’ll find someone else.
  • I hope we can keep in touch and stay friends.

Unlike a break-up conversation, however, I meant every one of these things — no one more than staying in touch. Leaving my work family is the toughest part about all of this.

I’m going to write more about this transition in the coming weeks, but in the meantime, check out my guest post at Balance in Me about finding and keeping balance in times of change. I was excited for the chance to one again contribute to this site and share with a new community of readers.

What are some of your favorite cliché break-up lines? Does this translate to work situations?

Colorful and Delicious – Yes Please!

I found this photo today when I was looking through Flickr’s Creative Commons gallery for a picture to illustrate my next guest post at Balance In Me (coming this Thursday — shameless plug!).

But back to the ice cream. Does this picture make you want to lick your computer screen/smartphone or what??

Free Rainbow Sprinkle Ice Cream Cone Creative Commons

I am no photography expert, so I can’t speak about anything technical, but the colors in this picture are…. delicious. And sprinkles in general are just…. delicious. It is probably not coincidence that I lingered on this picture shortly after I visited Baskin-Robbins for the first time in years. I really wasn’t sure they still existed, but being in one reverts me immediately to a child. That’s something the frozen yogurt places will never have. (But I still love you.)

I was just moved to share this picture. It made me happy. I thought you might like to go to sleep or wake up to such colorful sweetness too.

Photo Credit: D Sharon Pruitt; see more of her photos here.

My Thoughts… On Everything.

This last week or so has been a whirlwind and it’s left me anything but balanced. I’m not complaining, it just makes it hard to choose a blog topic. So all aboard the random train — it’s a journey through this past week.

The Good

My potluck freshman year roommate from college came to visit for a couple of days from her current residence in Dubai. Clearly, these visits don’t happen often. I had someone to sing RENT with and we spent a cold rainy day getting pampered.

Common interests such as massages and musicals aside, my friend and I are about as opposite as it gets. I peaked in my adventurous spirit by leaving Texas for Chicago for college. My friend packed her bags 3.5 years ago for a transfer to Dubai (after countless other trips abroad — by herself!). Yet, we still manage to spend hours just talking. And eating Chick-Fil-A. It was a wonderful visit.

Also, in the good category… Tina Fey’s Bossypants. Please, please read this book right now. I risk looking insane in every public place I choose to whip out my Kindle because it is just that funny. The following line got me strange glances while I read in Whole Foods. In talking about photo shoots and the controversy of re-touching, she says:

“I feel about Photoshop the way some feel about abortion. It is appalling and a tragic reflection on the moral decay of our society… unless I need it, in which case, everybody be cool. “

I love how she takes a serious and controversial topic and juxtaposes it with something trivial. It’s obviously two totally different animals, but it also makes a good analogy because it’s true! You’re my idol, Tina. The glasses are just icing on the cake.

The Bad

I can’t talk about this last week without mentioning the icon of evil that pervaded it.

Babies R Us.

Seriously, what is wrong with that place? I attend a baby shower every other day, but you can never learn to understand that building. During my visit this last week, I actually asked a sales associate if they just randomly assign aisle numbers on their gift registries. Why do they even bother? They are never correct. Never. I’m sorry to all my expecting and soon to be expecting friends, but unless you register for something I can find in the first 3 aisles, you are getting a gift card. Any further into that store and my soul gets darker.

Oh, and I guess I should mention that other evil, bin Laden. Because it took me so long to write this blog, commentary on the topic is probably a little old. So I will keep mine short.  I’m happy he’s dead. He represented the deepest of hatred in mankind and I thank our service men and women for all they do to protect us. I also don’t want to line the streets and throw a parade about it. I really liked this article. It’s pretty religious which is usually not where I go for commentary, but I like the message. It’s okay to hate bin Laden and it’s okay to be happy he’s dead.  I sure am. But you know, maybe we don’t need to see pictures of his skull blown away. Let’s just keep focusing on the very real terror threats that are still alive and strong.

I also kind of enjoyed all the misquoting that was going on as people looked to Dr. King and Mark Twain to express their feelings. Man, people will copy and paste anything!

(Did you see how I juxtaposed Babies R Us with Osama bin Laden in this section? Wouldn’t Tina totally do that?!)

The Huh?

My city is electing a new mayor and I attended a debate of the four candidates this week. I haven’t been up on my civic news and was looking for this debate to introduce me to the candidates and help me understand the main issues in this race and their corresponding views. And it did this. But I love how politicians will throw in anything to make you feel like they “get” you. This debate was at the Jewish Community Center and one of the candidates called it “the J.” Wow, you totally understand Jewish people!

But then one mentioned that he went to my high school (and it’s likely many people in that room did because the J is located nearby). I all of a sudden liked every answer he gave just a little bit more than the other guy’s response. And when he kept saying that something was done “good” instead of “well”, it was just an awesome representation of our public schooling. Go Panthers!

I promised you random, so there you go. I hope you didn’t throw yourself off the train. It helped me end the week with a little clarity to get this all out of my head, so thank you.

So, like, what’s up with all of you? Have a great weekend! If you are a mother, I hope you are spared a Babies R Us visit on your special day.