Archive for Career


I was working through the book, Very Quick Job Search (buy from indie booksellers, y’all!) by J. Michael Farr today, and I realized that I’ve got a problem:

When it comes to my job search, I have this enormous blind spot. (Originally wrote “bling spot.” Not sure what that would entail? Blinded by the light?) To wit, I am stoked about my career and the future and jobs and such, but when it comes to my job search, I get mopey and morose and BORED.

Wrapped up like a douche?!

Wrapped up like a douche?!

I was trying to write about accomplishments today, and everything turned into jargon. I didn’t dislike my last job, and I am quite proud of the things I did there, but it turns generic when I try to describe it:

Maintained database
Eliminated backlog of materials to be cataloged
Trained and supervised twelve staff
Created documentation and streamlined workflow for department

Like, seriously? I don’t know if that how much of that is just the language of job searching and how much of it just reflects my utter terror of the people I imagine to be “in charge”. I’m afraid to stand out and to be “different.” When, in fact, the things that make me different are going to be the things that land me the job.

And I keep thinking, Oh, I’m going to accomplish something soon that will be resume-worthy! There has to be something from my past that I can convert into an exciting, dynamic talking point!

So, here are some things off the top of my head that have excited me in the past (job-related or otherwise):

Learning to speak French when I got to college
Teaching myself how to run and becoming a freakin’ runner
Getting an MFA in Creative Writing
Earning two advanced degrees while working full-time
Volunteering in Maine because I felt moved to
Creating documentation for my job and the jobs of my employees out of thin air
Creating an entirely new job for myself and advocating for a promotion and raise

You see, here is where the energy is. It feels more authentic and more exciting to me. I notice that I feel most drawn to learning new things, creating new things, and taking risks. So, maybe that is where I want to focus, when I am putting together my resumes/cover letters/JIST cards: newness, risk-taking, learning, creating!

As for the jargon, I am wondering about how much I can loosen up without being too casual about the whole thing. Maybe Brazen Careerist has something to say on the matter? (I totally went over there thinking that I could probably dig around for something, but the very first blog post in the “Career Advice” section was this. Brava!