Order of the Good Write

That Magic Feeling When the Words Flow. A Blog by Debi Rotmil


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How To Bring A Hound to New York

americanine-at-the-met

I miss New York like crazy.

With the recent change of jobs and, well, being “in-between” opportunities right now, I’m kind of free to move wherever I want.

I say “kind of” because I’m not rich (yet!?).  It’s not easy to just get up and move back to New York from California to search for work back home – where things are expensive. But I’m making some plans and getting my home inventory together for selling off my life to do it.

But here’s the thing. My hound Baxter is coming with me, and it’s going to be quite a journey for the little guy.

He’s a California hound.

He knows of green grass and warm to cool temperatures.

He knows nothing of snow.

He’s okay with rain.

I’ve not a clue what he’ll do with ice.

Maybe he’ll eat it? Maybe he’ll grow found of the taste of snow?

He’ll have to  learn to poop on concrete if we can’t make it to the grass fast enough.

He’ll have lots of smells because New York is a cesspool of smells.

He’ll find new friends that will make his wag his tail.

And maybe I’ll find things to make my tail wag, too.

Unless a job comes up in Los Angeles. If one does get offered to me, then I guess if it’s a great one – I’ll stay a little longer.

But I’ll still miss New York, and I’ll long to see my hound romp in the snow for the first time.

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Going with the Flowing

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Ah, the first feel of autumn. It doesn’t matter if the calendar bumped over the Autumnal Equinox, summer’s heat always hangs around like a friend who’s outstayed their welcome on her couch.

Pumpkins are on your neighbors’ front stoops. Cotton blobs have been stretched and draped over bushes and trees to resemble massive nests of spider webs, but actually look like dryer lint that has exploded through a laundry room window. Decor of miniature rubber rats and cats with arched backs are sitting on lawns, freaking out your dog who thinks they’re his enemies.

Yet – the summer heat still lingers. They call it Indian Summer, where the colors of the leaves that are ready to shed off summer branches. Both entities don’t match the temperatures hitting your skin. The smell of mulch, mixed with dying summer. It’s the in-between. The confusion of leaving something behind and looking toward winter and it’s chill.

But, I’m going with the flow. Setting up a routine of meditating, job search, networking and writing. Trying my best to ignore how each of my neighbors go off into the world to earn their money to keep their home, live the lives they have chosen.

There are possibilities out there, and I’m in the twilight between what has left me and what’s to come. Just like autumn is the in-between of summer and fall that roars right into winter.

I only hope that what’s to come won’t be a snowstorm, or brittle cold. We work on choosing paths that will alter the chill. We discover and cherish warmth, color, beauty, light and abundance within frost frozen windows. Let it snow out there.

We’ve got more than what we need within. The more we know that, and the more we work at what we want with that belief – we are sitting pretty. There is a job out there that wants me. What is meant for me will come. I will work at it and embrace it. There is much I have to offer.

And – there’s that book I want to write, and the course I want to teach.

“A blank page or canvas. So many possibilities.” Stephen Sondheim

That’s going with the flowing.


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Job Seekers: Pep Talk Time

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The job seeker’s search for the soulful job is a challenging one at best.  Some get paralyzed with fear and worry about the unknown. The reality is – the only thing you can deal with is now. Not the past, nor the future. The past is a memory. The future ain’t here yet, brother. You only have this right here. So, when the window closes on a job, believe me – a big door opens. I’ve been through this a few times. I’ve seen it.

It may cause your stomach to fall to your knees. Being “let go” is not for the weak hearted. But sadly, even the weak hearted have to deal with it at one point. They need to find their strength and get used to the waves. It’s not the end of anything. It’s a start of something. Yeah – I’m going to get all self helpy here.

Don’t give into fear. This change has allowed you to embark on a new, open road, filled with vast possibilities – as a chance to recalibrate their career compass, to learn new ways to improve skills and sharpen their personal outlook.

It’s scary, yes. Bank accounts don’t lie, and sometimes the severance check doesn’t land in your bank account sooner than you think.

I’m going through all this now, and I’m here to say this to anyone in this position:

Don’t give into scarcity.  Don’t shrivel up and panic.

Does the loss of a job put the fire under your butt?

Yes – it does. And that’s good.

Does the pain of trying to find your footing in the world of job search get you down?

You know what? Yeah, it’s a bummer. And you need to embrace that, because I’ve come to believe – through the readings of stoics and “not give a fuckers” – that happiness is earned through the rough and tumbly waters of difficulty. It strengthens your wings and sets your sails toward survival. That strength, that survival, creates happiness.

As Mark Manson says in his book “The Subtle Art of Not Giving A Fuck”:

“…happiness requires struggle. It grows from problems. Joy doesn’t just sprout out of the ground like daisies and rainbows. Real, serious, lifelong fulfillment and meaning have to be earned through the choosing and managing of our struggles.”

I know – I’ve done the Abraham Hicks stuff, and I understand that in order to manifest cool stuff in your life, you have to feel good all the time. But facing the crappy stuff and finding solutions to your setbacks are more empowering.

Know your worth. Understand what you bring to the table when looking new opportunities. Don’t let anyone make you feel or believe you aren’t worth anything if rejection holds you down. Don’t let it suck you into the mire.

Know your finances. Be smart – not nuts about what you have to live on until you can find work. But if you have some dosh coming to you via severance or temp work – embrace it. Relish it. Be kind to yourself and treat yo-self to a lunch.

If you need to buy a new suit, or a new home printer because you need to look sharp and whip out instant resumes with powerful cover letters before that last minute interview — do it.  Spend a little money to help prepare you for the task ahead.

Get your hair done. Get your manicure fixed.

If your iPhone’s ringer doesn’t work and you keep missing important calls – consider getting a new iPhone – even if it’s not an upgrade. Just get yourself up to task so you show up bright, on point, shiny, empowered and ready for an abundant new chapter.

That’s what I’m doing. I’m flipping the bird on scarcity and fear. I’m doing it carefully because money isn’t growing on trees – but it is all around if you open yourself to it. Still -I’m not holding back on the things that I’ll need to get me there.

And if you’ve been unemployed for a while and have just given up – think of all that rejection as a nudge to do something else. Start a project that could spin into a real job. Volunteer at a local food kitchen. Start thinking like an entrepreneur and build a little something on the side that could spin into your life’s calling.

Take control of your path.

I know I’m going to get there. And you will, too.

 


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Human Resource: Being Human

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One of the worst things a person can say to someone who has just been laid off is, “What are you going to do now?”

What do you  mean, “What am I going to do now?”  Are you asking me because there is an answer? Do you have a job for me in mind, and the question is to see if I’m free so your wealthy dad can hire me?

What am I going to do now?

Well, for one – I’m going to feel a bit relieved. I wasn’t happy in the job I held for almost 5 years, and was gravely underpaid and unchallenged. Not that I didn’t try looking for a new job with better options while employed. I did. I have a resume that’s polished and updated. I have recruiters numbers and HR contacts on speed dial. From New York to Los Angeles – I’ve traveled for jobs that rendered nothing – yet.

And then, I’m going to speak to my financial advisor who deals with multi-millionaires and must wonder why the hell she took me on as a client several years ago when I was making better money, had a better job outlook, yet moved to Los Angeles for a change of pace only to run into low paying jobs thinking I’d get out of this financial rut. But seven years on? I have yet to.

And then, I’m going to write a book proposal where I reach out to frustrated people who are underemployed, underpaid, unemployed – millennials, Generation X-ers, Boomers Y-ers  — the multi-generational workforce that is fucking tired of trying to exist in this world. Not just in the material aspects of life, but spiritually. We are living in our machines – our faces illuminated in the light of our iPhones. We don’t see or feel each other. We argue and hate – in a world divided because we can’t find the American Dream.

And then, I’m going to find a job that pays better than what I’ve been paid. I’m going to write the book that needs to be written. I’m going to coach people to change their mindset so they find empowerment in the job seeking world that transcends race, gender and generations.

We are all in this together, folks. We need to wake up and understand how to survive.

Yet – here’s the thing:

I refuse to give into fear. I REFUSE to panic, to  live in lack and scarcity.  And if you find yourself in this position – YOU SHOULD TOO.

This is the hero’s journey, the big story of our lives, where we are taken out of our comfort zone, the “ordinary word”, and reluctantly forge to the “ordeal”, where we fight the slings and arrows of rejection and “what’s next”?

I don’t know if I believe we all have a “purpose” in life. Some of us do. Some of us don’t. But it’s nice to do something that helps others while we’re trying to help ourselves. It makes us – and jobseekers alike – human in a Human Resources world.

Just don’t ask a person who’s been laid off “What are you going to do now?”

What do you think I’m going to do?

Survive.

 

 


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Writing: Not Giving A Rat’s A$$

no fucks given

**Warning: This Blog is Filled with major potty mouth. If you don’t like this language (and I don’t blame you) I absolutely respect it, and suggest you click on another fine, insightful blog post here at “Order…”. The subject matter brought out a way of writing I don’t want to edit. In fact, it was cathartic.  Thank you!

I’ve been reading this amazing book called “The Subtle Art of Not Giving a F*ck” by Mark Manson.  The title alone just pulls you in. If you’ve been disappointed and tired of self help gurus and the magical thinking of manifesting and positive belief to get what you want – well, this book turns that all on its head.

By not giving any fucks, we’re not talking about going through life not actually giving any fucks. We all have to give some fucks. But the whole point of his thesis – and a very wise and interesting one it is – is making sure you know where you place your fucks and how.

Make sure your priorities are in check. In looking for your bliss – be realistic. Life is one big bowl of suckitude. It’s always unfair, rife with inequality and the luck of the uterus we were gestated in.

We lose our jobs, our money, or people die on us, leaving us bereft. We struggle to survive financially. We write lots of blog posts and articles, book proposal unseen and spec scripts turned down by TV studio workshops that favor writers with better connections.

We loose the love of our lives to other people. We hate on our politicians, our leaders, our false profits and the hypocrisy of a dangerous world placed in the hands of people who are looking out for themselves.

I could go on and on. Yeah, yeah – life can be beautiful. But we dwell more on how life can suck. Because life sucking makes you want to change things for the better.

This all doesn’t mean we shouldn’t try. Quite the contrary – we should try so hard it makes the fucks quake. Just don’t try by thinking you’re going to make it, because that will be your obstacle. It will make you raise the bar so high for yourself, that you won’t want to even try.

That’s why you shouldn’t give a fuckety fuck fuck about the outcome. Just do it. Just be a Nike ad. Just write. Just create. Who cares if it brings nothing. Let the work make you happy.

As Manson explains in his book: Life is hard, and choosing HOW we live through the pain is the secret to surviving. The pain of bad luck. The pain of hardship. The pain of pain. The pain of taking lemons and not making lemonade, but understanding the lemons so we can make some nice pressed juice in the future. Maybe with some lemons, now that we understand them.

The subtle art of not giving two fucks is to stop looking for happiness in materialistic things like money, houses, wealth, that hot man or lady who we think will complete our lives, because it only lasts for a little while. Then the problems begin. The bills. The upkeep. The arguments. The way she likes to snap her gum in your face, or how he scratches his butt at inappropriate moments.

It’s fuckery to compare someone in another lane, riding in his Mercedes and sharp suit, thinking this dude is all happy and we want to be happy like that too, only to find out the guy in the Mercedes is going bankrupt and being sued for a portion of his earnings and his wife left him for her bi-sexual spin instructor.

The art of not giving a rat’s fuck is allowing yourself to clear expectations of yourself and your goals. To chose your fucks wisely. It is here where we find freedom.  The freedom to clear away obstacles so we can just do the damn work for the sake of doing it where no fucks are given, and the fucks don’t even wanna know.

I’m going to write that book and coach people in writing. I don’t give two fucks.

Thanks for reading. But please – read Manson’s book.


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Multi-Generation Workforce: What is Our Future?

middle of nowhere

Photo by Nitish Meena

It’s a crowded world out there. Apparently five generations are actively participating in today’s workforce. We’re all competing for the same jobs, with various degrees of skills and experiences. I could go into a comparison on each generation’s tussle with finding the job they want – but I will admit to not having enough research to make claims.

Nor do I want to get into an argument over which generation is more worthy of a job than the other. We all need to survive, no matter what our age. With the economy being so stagnant and debt choking our ability to save for the future – we are all on common ground.

It’s hard out there. We’re not against each other. We are in this together.

Yet company’s are slow to hire the young and sluggish in hiring above the age of 45.

If this keeps up,  how will we all end up?  Unemployed? Draining Social Security and Unemployment reserves? Will we be living on the streets, homeless with suicide rates climbing higher as the opiate crisis turns into options for those who are hopeless because we couldn’t find employment to save for our future?

Sounds dire, yes. But really. What’s to become of us?

Members of each generation yell at the other for being unfair, for leaving the world in a worse place and not laying down the groundwork for a better life they were born into.

The reality is – there never was a better world to build. Some tried. Some succeeded, but many took, took and took. Greed got in the way. Complacency. Political figures shouting down those who worked against the fold to make this world better.

The point is – we are not entitled to anything someone else leaves behind, We are entitled to live in this world and make it the best we can. That’s all anyone has ever done. They tried and some died for it.

However, in today’s economic and sociopolitical upheaval – what is going to happen to us when we are old? Are we going to fight against each other? Or are we going to come together and form a different economy and workforce that looks different than it does today?

Or – are going to be a multi-generational force who throws aside the conventional world of corporations who tie us down and make us question our own ability?  Shun being someone we are not in order to gain employment by fitting into their culture deck and corporate goals.

Let’s be honest. We put ourselves in this position because we don’t know any other way. We are conditioned – or at least some of us – to believe we are participating citizens in the world when we work for others.

Some already know, from birth, that this isn’t the way – and they go it alone, finding independent success with future’s uncertain, but still financially stable.

We need to wake up and take life and career into our own hands.  Even if it means we bring our best to a company by making it better, infusing a fresh new way they can produce. Even if it means going it alone and building your own business. Through coming together and working out a new mindset to the workforce and how we can contribute passionately to meaningful actions, perhaps we can pull it together and find a future we can look forward to instead of fear.

It’s easy to say this when you don’t have college debt or don’t sleep on someone’s couch. But why not try to list some actionable plans that one can actually done – one day at a time – to get us there?

Multi-Generation Workforce – let’s band together. No more magical thinking. Let’s start thinking clearly now. We need to be proactive in our lives and start something new to change this life for the better, and for generations to come.

How do we do that? Comment below.

And stay tuned.


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Workforce: Finding Your Way with Your “Why”

paddling down river

I wake up everyday wondering what my “why” is. Why do I do the job I do everyday? Does it provide me more than just a paycheck, health care and a place to go where I feel I’m making a difference? Do I come home feeling fulfilled?

Simon Sinek is the purveyor of the concept of “Why”. In his book “Start with Why”, he proposes a simple and profound philosophy: Why do you do what you do? How do you help others do the same? What drives you to making you create a life and career that fulfills you?  (Read his book. He’s amazing, and my description can’t do his words justice.)

The work force has changed in the few decades since I graduated college. Rather than going for the safe and seemingly secure job, it’s become clear that nothing is safe nor secure. Money doesn’t grow in our bank accounts. Salary increases are not living up to inflation. Rents are stupidly high. We cannot build up the 401K plans provided by those who will cut us loose when budget figures don’t meet. If we lose health care, we are screwed.

In the advent of layoffs as probable options for companies, we are not able to grow careers under the mentor ship of our company executives unless we really focus on taking charge of our careers.

For introverts, like myself, who find it difficult to get out there and cultivate career goals, we don’t stand a chance.

And then, as we wander our way through the work week, counting down to Friday, some of us wake up and realize – we aren’t find our “why” in a paycheck because we are only at our jobs — for the paycheck.

When I was in college, I wanted to become a writer and producer. I wrote scripts, studied television and interned at NBC. When I graduated and went into the Reagan infused workplace of the 1980’s,  I went the conservative route. I became an Assistant – just to get my foot in the door of a major television network. The rest would take care of itself, I thought. I’d stay and work hard until someone recognized my accomplishments. My own network will grow, and I’ll apply for work that will lead me toward a job on a show. From there, I’ll offer my writing services, learn, work late hours, grow, build relationships.

What actually happened was this. I was laid off 4 times in 7 years. Instead of growing my path, I kept getting knocked off it. Fearing long unemployment, I went for and grabbed any assistant job within the industry – just for the paycheck. Just for somewhere to go that made me feel productive in society. Just to at least try my hand at my plan with another company.

I didn’t do the work after hours to gain my writing career, nor my production aspirations. My days were spent safe. Sound. Bored. Earning. Learning. But learning what?

Learning that after all those years – I fell asleep at the wheel.

30 years later – YES – 30 years – I’m still an assistant. I never ever wanted to be one. I didn’t work my college years writing and getting good grades thinking, “I really want to be an assistant!”

Yet, it happened.

Because I never really believed that what I wanted to do was going to happen for me.

Because no matter how hard I tried in the past, I never won – like all those track meets at school where I’d train and train my ass off to exhaustion – only to come in dead last all the time.  I thought winning was just completing the race no matter the standing. But I didn’t realize that idea had done some slow burner damage to my self esteem.

It’s easy for us to do this. And it’s easy for us to run to the same damn thing over and over again just because we want a little of what we once had, or to just play it safe. The problem with that is – you run aground. Your anchor gets stuck in the marsh.

With all this self awareness flooding through me, and understanding that I’ve been in a deep sleep all these years, I’m starting to wake up. I’m beginning to clear away fear and trying to find that blue sky to freedom.

In this millennium, we need to rethink the way we decide to do life. Millennials, Gen X-er’s, Boomers – we’re all in this together. If life is a drag and your job sucks. Or if you’re unemployed and can’t find anyone giving a damn about your resume. Maybe you should think of changing the work force on its head and go out on your own.

I’m thinking this way now.

Although I’m grateful at the moment that I do have a job, I want to work my way into no longer being beholden to a company.

How do I do this? How do we all do this?

Create a message that one is passionate about.  James Murphy of LCD Soundsystem sings, “You’re a pushover for passionate people.”

Yup. Because they’re all we introverted 30 year veterans of futility have to wake us up to how to flourish from within so we can change our notion of living and how to live. And because I want to be passionate about something or else I will fold into myself and fall asleep in the snow and die of hypothermia. (Cue Liz Lemon).

Devise a logical and doable plan – to build your own thing. Your own business.

Do life you’re own way.

Help others – others who are not your age, not of your generation, not your race, not of your life, not of your sexuality or of you gender – and together – try to find a way to create something that leads you on the road to WHY.

As we have seen in the news – those in elected office who call themselves our leaders – aren’t going to do it for us.

We have to get started. There’s a lot of work to do.