Thursday, March 6, 2014

It really has been quite some time since I last posted. Like three months to the day; odd. Within the last few months I didn't write, a lot of people told me they really enjoyed reading my blog. So thank you! I had no idea how many people actually read this thing. So, for now, I'm back and wish I could say better than ever as well, but then I'd be lying.

Where I left off...
December I got a internship for a start up company but quit because it didn't seem like it was going anywhere nor was it something I had interest in. Can't really say much of anything happened in December, actually. I was still feeling a lot of emotion from a relationship that had ended in November. I was a hermit, let's just go with that.

January... things picked up somewhat. I started putting myself out there more. Went and visited friends I hadn't seen in a while and was starting to feel a little less like a depressed recluse. However, still would say I had lots of thoughts and hurt feelings over the ending of my relationship. (That kind of stuff hits hard and I'm just saying what everyone is thinking when they're going through it.) But anyway, landed myself a job at a surf shop in town towards the end of January and started working there. I'd like to think I was getting back on my feet, and maybe in some ways I was. I finally was working at a job that could offer me some stability and that I enjoyed. I completely forgot to mention that I thought it would be fun to go back to school, that lasted all of four weeks. So working and coaching is what I decided to stick with and it keeps me busy enough.

February was... interesting. I found someone I really liked and had fun with. He understood me on a lot of different levels but it still felt too soon to jump into something serious when I had just gotten out of something serious so I was on the fence a lot which ended.

And that brings us to March. I'm not going to sit here and talk about my struggles working for a male dominated corporation or how lost I feel at this point in my life(I'll save that for another time because I'm sure you are all so eager to know) but rather some lessons I've learned thus far into 2014.

First off, not everyone is put in your life and is meant to stay there forever. People come and they go... and then sometimes come back again, just to leave... again. The point I'm getting at here is that the people that are in your life right now, serve a purpose and are meant to be there. I couldn't specifically tell you what that purpose is but I think the more time that passes the easier it is to see why those people were there in the first place. (If this doesn't make sense, feel free to drop a comment down below telling me I'm crazy. Always appreciate the feedback.)

Second, there is a difference between making a mistake and a decision. I'd like to think the only difference is that a decision requires thought and a mistake doesn't(you know, like "I made a mistake, I wasn't thinking!) but I think some people would have a really good counterargument for that, so I'm just going to remind them and say this is simply my opinion. I've made some pretty terrible decisions and mistakes lately, and I apologize for all of them to the respective people that were affected. There's no excuse for them really, and to be honest there is absolutely nothing I could even say that would make it okay. All I can really say, is that I'm not really proud of the person I've been lately and while I wish I could be a beacon of optimism and say how grateful I am for these valuable "learning experiences" as my dad would call them, I'm not grateful at all. I hate that the only way we can grow as individuals is through a series of mistakes, trial and error and sometimes, small victories. But most of the time, through mistakes and trial and error, that tends to result in someone getting hurt. Wouldn't it just be easier if we born with the all these "learning experiences" under our belt? Maybe. But I suppose these experiences make life interesting. Interesting can be so overrated sometimes, am I wrong...

So before this gets to lengthy and I lose everyone's interest all together here's a little apology: I am sorry to the ones I have wronged whether by mistake or decision and I am sorry for the future mistakes and decisions I will inevitably make in the future because I am human. I can only hope that when someone wrongs, hurts and disappoints me, I can look down on them with more compassion than anger.

A little food for thought there. Let it marinate for a bit and hit me up with what that brings up for you.

Till next time,

And as always, a very concerned picture of my dog losing all his dignity in a rain slicker... Enjoy.

Friday, December 6, 2013

Fell away for a few days but I'm back! I didn't want to post everyday and have my posts be forced and meaningless. I'd like them to have some thought because if they don't, I'll be bored writing it and you'll be bored reading it. It's no way to live, really.

So back on to the post grad problems...
I recently applied to a job that I thought I was going to get. I went into my first interview and nailed it. Then I was called in for a second interview, where they had narrowed the potential candidates to another person and me. I applied to a place of familiarity where many of the staff knew who I was and I thought this would buy me the job. So how shocked was I to get a letter in the mail stating that, "We had a high volume of candidates apply to this job, although..." blah, blah, blah. Same old form letter of rejection. And because I had banked on getting this job, I really hadn't pursued any other leads so now I'm stuck with nothing but feelings of anger and frustration. Where do I go now? Back to Craigslist postings and scouring the web for anything I might be qualified for. Looking over job forums is where I find jobs I'm either over qualified for or are such long shots, why do I even bother? So going back to school doesn't seem like a bad idea at this point, might as well acquire some new skills. So back to school I go!

It's funny because on the day of graduation, I had this hope that even though everything that day wasn't set I really thought that things would have been worked out by this time. Going back to school, nonetheless at my local junior college, was not a thought on my mind. In fact, I couldn't tell you what was on my mind. The graduation ceremony itself went by so fast, hours seemed like seconds. Just like my college career, five years has been reduced to five minutes. Even though I'm going back to school, I'm going back a different person. Not a fun-loving college girl, but a college graduate, with a degree sitting on my mantle at home. The first time around was for fun, the second time means business. And for the life of me, my dad is a walking, breathing storm cloud over my head.
"Sara, you know what I read today? 7 out of 10 people hate their job. People are literally being worked to death at jobs they hate."

This little pearl of wisdom came during a conversation about how the job search has become desperate and people will take anything they can get. Meanwhile, the man is preaching, "you better get a job you like because you'll be worked to the bone." Awesome. And the only way I can get the job I love is if I'm qualified for it and that requires more school or more experience. School would take more money, which nobody has these days so I would need to take out loans. OR if I want more experience, I'd have to settle for something I may be over qualified for.

So, my question for today is, how do you decide what's worth it? Loans or settling for something you know you're too good for? And if you settle there's really no promise you'll get the dream job you've been pining over. Where do you go from there? Let me know!

Till next time,

And as promised, the King himself...



Monday, December 2, 2013

Wow! So I've received a lot of really good feedback about my blog so first off, thank you to everyone who read my first post! I hope I can continue to inspire, make you laugh or perhaps just give you something to read while you eat your lunch. Either way, I really appreciate all the interest and support!

So... back to what the blog is all about...
Like any other college grad if I hear the question, "So what have you been doing since you graduated?" or "Oh you're back in Santa Cruz? For how long?" I may explode because the answer is simply "I've been living at home with my parents, searching for the right 'fit' for me and yes! I am back, for good! FOREVER! (Mom, Dad, if you're reading this, that's not true, I promise. Just seems like it is for now. I have made a pact with myself that if I reach age thirty and I am still living in my high school themed room, you can kick me out. It's okay.)

I don't know why there is such a stigma that people who graduate and earn a degree know EXACTLY what they are going to do after college. Gosh, that could not be more false! I mean, sure, there are some people who from straight out of the womb know they are going to be a doctor, lawyer or teacher. No one dreams in third grade that when they grow up they want to be a director of human resources for a company or a financial adviser for a retirement financial planning group. If you did know what these things were when you were nine or ten, then kudos, you must be a CEO of some super company now. But for those who never had our dreams set in stone, life thus far is about testing the waters and feeling out what you like and what you don't. However, what I hear from almost everyone is, "how am I suppose to get experience if no one is hiring?" Job hunting has become an act of desperation a little, right? We take what we can get at first because the odds of getting the job you really want maybe be a little out of reach at first. Maybe you need to go to graduate school to be qualified for the position you desire or just need more experience to snag that job as a journalist for your local paper. And how discouraging is that after working your tail off for the past four or five years to obtain this piece of paper that is suppose to be the key to the motherland. (I speak for myself with these generalizations and not everyone.)

So you graduate and it's like you have to plan a whole new route about getting to where you want to be and you measure the pros and cons and decide is that what I really want? Take me for instance, I majored in government/journalism. I like government and find it interesting(try and resist the jokes and snide comments please because I know I left that one wide open.) So I interned for the Governor's Office and loved it because of the people I met and the work I was doing. However, when my internship was over, I knew it wasn't really something I seriously wanted to pursue cue identity crisis. So for about four months I racked my brain over possible jobs I thought I wanted. I went anywhere from physical therapist to nurse to teacher. People, I was flailing like a flag in the wind. And the worst part of it all is that being involved with someone made it nearly impossible to think for myself and make decisions about my future without involving that person. I couldn't tell you what I really wanted to do because at this point I thought I would be happy doing anything as long as it involved being with my partner. That's no way to make important decisions, especially because partners are permanent and they can't make you happy. Some people have already learned this but it's important to do what you love and makes you happy first and then life has a way of working the rest out. And BELIEVE ME, there is nothing more irritating than hearing a few days post break up, "Sara, you just need to do whats right for you and worry about yourself." In my head I'm thinking, "Do you think I'm just sitting here trying to do whats not in my best interest? I'm not a masochist." But a couple months later, that abstract idea of making myself happy has become so simple. Really! And this comes from someone who over analyzes everything! It really is that easy!

Sure, I'm not the person I envisioned myself being when I started college or even when I graduated but I'm not that bad off. I still am pondering some possible careers and applying for various jobs that interest me but nothing set in stone. I've thought about things I want to do before settling into a thirtysomething year old lifestyle. I want to travel to South America and Fiji and want to have the flexibility to be curious about the world while I can. There will always be school and time for me to go back. Here comes the cliche, you only go through your twenties once where its socially acceptable to go travel for three months, have a quarter life crisis and get drunk on a Tuesday night. This does not go to say that I love everyday of my twenties but most days I could definitely be worse off. I accept that I don't know exactly what I want to do with my career, that I'm single, living with my parents, my dog's my best friend because this is the time in my life where that's all okay! And if some people don't approve of that, that's okay too because I've accepted it! I continue to let my curiosity aid in my personal growth but what's the point of forcing it? As long as you haven't morphed into a part of your couch with the remote control glued to your hand, it's okay to work dead end jobs for a little while or go back to school at the local junior college. You're guaranteed a diploma at the end of college but most definitely are not promised wisdom and confidence that everything is going to workout the way you thought it would at the beginning and honestly, even if people tell you that, it's just something you learn along the way for yourself.

Before this gets too lengthy and everyone loses interest, no need to hit the panic button if things haven't worked out the way you think they should have. Often times we don't enjoy whats right in front of us because we're too busy worrying about things that are out of our control. So my food for thought tonight: If you stay motivated and have some faith in yourself, why not sit back and enjoy the ride? You'll get to where you want to be if you just keep on keeping on.

I have never identified with going-with-the-flow because it seems a little to chaotic for me but there's nothing wrong with taking it a day at a time.

Till next time,

And for all the people who read this just to see a picture of my dog... here ya go.... lets be honest who the real celebrity is here.

Sunday, December 1, 2013

Hello all, my name is Sara and for privacy reasons and I believe the internet is a scary place I will leave my last name out. (Truthfully, I'm surprised I even made a blog, but it was either this or starting a book, I'd like to think this is a little easier than writing a book.)

I started this blog because I wanted to convey my experience as a post-graduate, living at home with my parents in the small surf town I grew up in. I'd like to believe that I'm not the only one who moved home after receiving a bachelor's degree but who knows... there are some pretty ambitious people out there. So I write this blog to detail my progress up until this point and progress to come in the future to prove to myself, my parents and others (mostly my parents) that I can be a civilized, independent adult. But until then, I write, hoping to shine some light into others who may feel the same sense of lost and misunderstood I do post grad.

For beginners you might as well need to know, I went to college for five years; two at a junior college and three at a university. I finally received my hard earned bachelors degree in the Spring of 2013. (I'm sorry to be a bore with all the logistics here but you need to know?) I moved home to my sleepy little surf town I grew up in to my parents house. Sidebar:
Other than advice from my parents and noting their former occupations here and there, the only detail I will give is that they are amazing. AMAZING. Just in case you didn't see it the first time. My parents have been perfect role models of what I aspire to be each and every day.

Back to my journey to moving home...
I moved back home literally the weekend after I graduated. I wasted no time to get out of where I was and to move on with my life. Initially my thoughts about moving home were that it was going to be temporary because I was in a relationship and figured I'd probably move again at some point to pursue making that relationship work. Well... just shy of about four months after I graduated, that relationship ended and what I was left with was a dead end job as a receptionist and a 10x12 ft. room at my parents house. At the time, losing my relationship felt like losing everything. Regardless of the integrity my significant other had, my relationship with him felt like the last thing that was actually mine since I had graduated. I hadn't anticipated the loss of independence in my life that I would feel moving home so losing the last thing that made me feel independent was devastating. It felt like all the work I had put in to being independent in college was worth nothing now. Naturally I confided in my parents because I assumed that they had some wisdom and insight into my quarter life crisis.

My dad, a man of many words, has been my confidant through this transition. We have a pretty strong daughter-father relationship and I value his insight more than anyone's. At times, he may have a God complex but what can you do, the man was a firefighter for 25 years. He survived life at the hands of death every day, so he gets to feel that way. Through our weekly conversations about my flailing life and pursuit for success, he tells me this,
"Sara, you constantly have to reinvent yourself because the world is constantly changing." 

At first my initial reaction to this was, "Yeah dad, no shit, I'm not going to be acting like an eighteen year old when I'm twenty-five." It took me some time to really get what he meant. It wasn't my mannerisms but my goals and what I wanted from partners, careers and life in general. So that my friends is what I ponder these days. I knew who I was in college. I was a student-athlete for so many years that when I graduated I was burdened with the question, "oh god, but really, who am I?" For those going through something similar to me, I challenge you to ponder the question of reinventing yourself and what that means for you.

Till next time,

And here's a picture of my dog Pete since you kindly read my blog that you may have absolutely no interest in whatsoever.