Reflection of the Past 4 Months

On November 30, 2013, I finished my last day of an 11 month co-op term with the BC Lions. I had every intention of finding a paid position or internship in the next 4 months to learn and develop new skills before I headed back to school at the end of April.2013-11-30 13.15.00 HDR

However, that didn’t really turn out. I did find some great projects to be a part of including Networking in Van as their Marketer Intern, Footy for Food the start of my professional social media skills, and Blitz Media as a PR intern to get a glimpse into the PR world. I also recently added TEDxSFU, as their Social Media Manager (more professional experience) to the mix. They were all great projects and I really enjoyed helping out in all these areas. Social media is definitely something I want to incorporate into my career. It is so amazing to be able to connect with people all over the world and makes it so easy to disseminate your message to the masses. Even more impressive is managing how to do this with meaning and getting people engaged. I am really excited to continue to develop these skills with these awesome brands and more in the future.

I also spent a lot of time working on my personal fitness. In September 2013, I ran my first 5km race. In December 2013, I ran my 2nd 5km race, and 1st trail race. In March 2014 I ran my first 10km race in the SNOW. And in August 2014, I will run my first 1/2 marathon! I am so excited to see the physical improvement in my running and my ability to manage and observe all my mental chatter. It has been quite a roller coaster. I go in waves of intense desire to be active, but then there are other days that the dark cloud that hovers over my heads really takes charge and zaps me of all my motivation. It was a great opportunity over the last 4 months, to really focus on this area of my life and I am thankful to have had the chance to do this.

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So what have I learned over the past 4 months? Well, I still feel really lost in terms of my direction for my career. I’m not entirely sure where I am headed in any real facet. It has been great to have the opportunity to learn a bit more about myself and what I want. I know I am really focused on being present in all my activities, and am determined to find happiness in my career. I would love to find something that makes me happy but is also a source of income. The past 4 months have definitely been a challenge and I’m not entirely certain if it would be possible to find this, but I am optimistic and hopeful.

My next post will review a bit more about what I’ve discovered that I really enjoy doing and what I don’t. Maybe you will be able to shed some light on what that looks like for a career?

 

Until next time…

 

 

 

 

 

 

Personal Growth

I relearned a lesson I noted a few posts back about dedicating my time to things I enjoy doing, again recently.

I have a very good talent for finding projects that do not pay me. Now this has never been a problem, but this year has held several expensive costs, a lot of which came in during the month of April. This might help illustrate my passion for getting involved. and thinking about this, is making me start to realize and acknowledge that. I think I am really starting to value my time and know that I want to use my time in the most efficient and effective way possible.

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Last week I started an unpaid internship. Now, I went into it thinking it would be really exciting to see the action behind the scenes of a fairly well known blog. However, the unpaid nature of it, really quickly put a strain on me with my school tuition being due and an extra special levy on my apartment out of the blue all in the same week. I am so proud of myself for realizing the strain this was going to be putting on me and decided to step back from the position.

I had a weird feeling, and I think this is the first real example I can bring up where I listened to my gut.

This week marks the last week of freedom (read unemployment) before I head back to school to begin my PR certificate. I am really looking forward to having some more structure in my life! I can’t wait to see this next chapter unfold in my life.

In my blog I will do a bit of reflection on what I have learned over the last 4 months.

Until next time…

Changing Mindset

Hello again.

I am so sorry for my inconsistency. I am consciously trying to focus on more consistent blogging!

A few thoughts that have been running through my head recently have been focused on choice. I feel that in this period of transition (between school programs and real life) that I have been under this deep fog or this raincloud that hovers over my head. I have always dealt with this, but it has really been magnified during this period of my life.

My thoughts in the last few days have been on choosing to be happy and productive. I have consciously tried to monitor my feelings as of late and have noticed that sometimes I just do not want to do things. This morning was a particular example when I woke up at 8am (purposely trying to be productive) and was not inclined to do anything work related. By 8:30 though, I was feeling more excited to go to my yoga class. I’m not sure what changed but I think being conscious of monitoring my feelings definitely played a role.

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Now, I wouldn’t say I’m initially afraid of what could go wrong, but I feel like I need to focus on what could go right. Fear doesn’t drives me but rather this cloud that is hanging over me, just limits my motivation and drive. It has taken me a few months, but I hope coming to the realization that if I focus on monitoring and focusing my energy and feelings I will be able to reach for things that I’ve always been told are in front of me.

I’m hoping this little experiment of mine will pan out and help me get out of this ever present fog. Being mindful and importantly okay with the feelings I acknowledge will help me identify what is important to me and hopefully help me find what I want. Mindfulness is a topic that has come up in some of my psychology classes, but I have never really focused on it in my personal life. Hopefully these baby steps will help me be and present myself in a way that I want to be fully.

 

Now for some blog goals: I will consistently blog every Monday.

 

Neglectful Blogger

Holy moley! It has been a while. My apologies to all my new readers! I have been a neglectful blogger, although I have been super determined to consistently blog since starting. Here is a little update on what I have been up to.

Well first off, I’ve ran my first 10km race! In the snow, no less, in Vancouver! It was actually so amazing. I fell off a bit of the training bandwagon a few weeks before my run, but I was determined to complete the race and gave myself a time of 1 hour and 30 minutes. I thought this would give me some breathing room. Waking up to the middle of a snow storm before my race, only added to my nerves. I was really scared going into it but once I started running the nerves melted away, similar to the snow. I actually surpassed my expectations finishing in a time of 1 hour 7 minutes and 44 seconds! Following that race, I’m now really looking forward to the Seawheeze Half Marathon in August. My nerves are also starting to really build! I’m also contemplating to sign up for another 10km in the meantime, will keep you updated if that happens.

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On a separate note, I think I’ve started to really focus on my own personal happiness. I’ve been really in the area of trying to impress people and fit in this perfect little box. It has recently dawned on me that I want to be spending my time, enjoying the things I do. By trying to impress people and really caring about what they think, I am only hurting my own happiness. This point was also mentioned by Hillary Clinton recently, when she spoke in Vancouver and was originally pointed out to me by Jen Schaeffers  What really clued me in to this recently (again), was when I volunteered with the Vancouver Home and Garden Show. I thought this would be a great opportunity to get in the community and meet some new people. In reality, I really have no interest in home design or gardens. The conditions were not fantastic, having to stand on a concrete floor for 5 hours. I really didn’t think this would bother me, but boy was my back sore. Could definitely feel a compression in my lower back by the end of it.

But this was a great experience to show me that I want to spend my time volunteering for things I enjoy and that will contribute to my skill set. I’ve actually taken on a few volunteer projects, which I think fit perfectly with this goal. I’m really excited for all these opportunities and am really enjoying my time and ability to time manage so I can contribute significantly to all these projects. I really look forward to making connections and also developing my professional social media skill set with these projects.

I promise to try to blog once a week moving forward.

*image from DearLifeILoveYou on Instagram

Inspiration?

A few weeks ago I attended the WXN Top 100 Women Luncheon and during the Q & A session, one guest asked what happens when your passion runs out?

I’ve been realizing this a lot lately, that I am constantly searching for inspiration. Is this normal? I feel at a bit of a loss. I am still uncertain of what I want to do with my life and am feeling so antsy about it.

I know I want to be successful and that looks like I love what I do. But what I want to do is entirely another question. I’m hoping that by staying involved in my community, I will be able to find some sort of clarity soon. There are some days when this yearning becomes totally overwhelming. Frustrating is also a word I would use.

This image popped up on my Facebook feed the other day. And I had to share it. Love Social is an inspiring digital agency.  I definitely recommend checking them out. They also post loads of inspiring images on their Facebook page weekly.

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I’m starting to feel this yearning to go to Bali again. I’m not sure what it is. It is not this in my face feeling that I have to do something. But it is definitely something that keeps crossing my mind.

I’ve never really travelled by myself. Last year was the first year that I travelled on an airplane by myself and that was a quick trip to Vegas. I would like to think that this might do me some good.

I will keep pondering….

Volunteering

I was recently asked to speak about volunteering and I thought to myself, do I really volunteer that much to speak about it?

Not really. I’ve always thought it was important to volunteer, and have consistently been active in my community in one way or another, but I do not think I go above and beyond what most people do. Right now, I am a Brownie Leader to my boyfriend’s cousin’s daughter’s Brownie group (follow that?). This is my second year doing this and I have really enjoyed it. Recently, I’ve found that I’m not looking forward to going to the meetings. The girls are all really wonderful individually, but man do they have a lot of energy and are constantly talking. This is really starting to get on my nerves, especially when we are trying to get something across. I have always been a really good listener, and it just seems to be lost on these girls. It makes me feel really disrespected and annoyed. This is making me feel like a bad person.

To make it even worse, the parents recently sent out an email to “just the parents” about getting the leaders a present at the end of the year. They included me in this email chain, and didn’t even mention that I was a leader illustrating they didn’t even know I am a leader. A little concerning, given that I am there every week with their daughters. You think you would know who was responsible for them. Not only that, but I am not even a parent so I shouldn’t be included in this email in any fashion.

Starting to feel like I’m in volunteer fatigue. I get emails from Young Women in Business about their Ladies in Pink program, volunteer opportunities in the community. I recently said yes to one, that I really had zero interest in. They signed me up to work 3 of the 5 days of a show. I do not know why I signed up, but I definitely did not enjoy it. We were doing remedial tasks and I was neither being challenged nor learning new skills. I was actually beyond bored and did not enjoy what I was doing. Definitely volunteer fatigue. This experience really showed me to value my own time. I do not want to spend more than 4 hours doing something I do not enjoy. It was not a feel good experience.

I’m feeling a lot angst right now. I am feeling very ungrateful and non appreciative. Feeling like this snow cloud that is hanging over Vancouver, is hanging over my head. I’m hoping that by acknowledging these feelings, I will soon be out of it. I need a good shake. But what I’ve learned about valuing my own time through this experience, I hope to apply to my life more generally. I will continue to volunteer, but I am going to be more selective in my choices about where I dedicate my time. I would much rather spend my time doing something volunteer or otherwise, that is valuable and will help me develop news skills and experiences and create a positive contribution into the community.

/end rant.

Figuring it Out

Just over a week ago I asked Paulina Cameron out for a coffee chat. She is an amazing lady. I’ve been so inspired watching her over Twitter and her blog the past few years, and being able to see that she oozes inspiration in the way she carries herself.

We chatted over tea and chai, and she helped me start the ball rolling to figure out what I like and what I am good at. Image

This conversation has been replaying in my head over the past few weeks. One thing that I keep coming back to is how much I love watching sports. I’m passionate about cheering on my team in all sorts of events. I pick up the rules quickly for new sports and am able to learn player names very fast. I wonder if this will be a part of my career path. It is definitely something I enjoy doing.

Similarily, another possible career light bulb thought came from Matt Corker this week. Matt (also someone who I admire) recently posted on taking out the grind in your everyday life. He poised the question why do things have to be difficult? Things can be fulfilling, important and valuable while also being fun, easy and enjoyable. This sounds amazing. And is something I hope to be able to incorporate into my career. I am so determined to find out if this is possible. Why not enjoy what you do? Refreshing to see Matt post about this, and to see that it exists in real life.

My eyes and heart are open for what is possible. Hoping everyday that I am able to figure it out a little bit more.

Until next time…