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Tuesday, March 3, 2009

The Devil in Me

You can’t hear me, but I am saying this ten times fast. “I will not pick up my book. I will not pick up my book….”

On the agenda today:

Physical therapy before school for my daughter’s healing knee injury, coffee with a friend who works for a human resources recruitment firm, a quick buzz to the grocery store for an ingredient that will transform leftovers into a sumptuous dinner, a walk (although after eight inches of new snow and temperatures hovering around 12 degrees, I’m waffling on this one), working on my functional resume, and analyzing my contact list to determine my networking resources.

Jeepers, all I’ve ever wanted in life is time to do the things I love and now, being out of work, it seems like that dream should be realized. But you know the old saying, finding (or in my case, preparing to find) employment is a full time job, so in spite of my whining, the weeks fill up rather quickly.

Today though, the book taunts me: “Read me, read me, the rest can wait.” This is the first time in my month of "unassigned time," that I have contemplated wavering from my new “routine” to pursue something more frivolous. Doing so would involve dancing around a dangerous trap though; one I don’t plan to fall into.

Some mornings I want nothing more than to pull my covers over my head when the alarm goes off, although, come to think of it, those feelings didn’t evolve with unemployment. What is different though is that now, I could, um, you know, actually stay in bed all day. So when that temptation hovers like a nasty helicopter at 5:45 each morning, I force myself up and into the shower, starting my “work” day as soon as my daughter goes to school. Self motivation is probably one of the most important parts of moving on in a career.

Yesterday was particularly hard, due to the late season snowstorm that cancelled school and delayed work for my husband. Shouldn’t I too, get some time off for good behavior? Well, no I guess not, because anxiety pertaining to the future doesn’t take a vacation day. So, while the winds blew and snow pounded the windows, I reviewed LinkedIn and Indeed.com, talked to my outplacement counselor, then started making his suggested edits to my employment biography. Meanwhile, after a disaster involving a buried newspaper and the snow blower, (no rest for him either) my husband left for work three hours late. My daughter, lucky girl, did stay in bed with her covers over her face.

Although I was up and moving early, there was a bonus to yesterday. After postponing the cat’s checkup with the vet, there was no requirement to get out in the storm—no work to stomp into stressed and frustrated as a result of this additional winter onslaught. But climbing back into bed, no, that wasn’t an option. When you face the unpredictability of how long unemployment could last, the old crystal ball theory surfaces again. Anyone I speak to who has been unexpectedly unemployed, says that if they could have seen into their future that a job would be forthcoming, they would have had a lot more fun while searching. I’m in the same predicament. At least though, I have this blog, and yes folks for me, this is fun. The book however, remains on the coffee table.

I don’t care what anyone says though. At 4:00, I’m opening it.

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