Back in November, and December, I announced a major change in my life: I'm Looking for a New Job, or a New Career Direction.
3. Hey, World Travelers! Man in Mid-Life Career Change Crisis Seeks Advice: Can you think of places to live with at least 10 of these 15 factors, or half, or just the to5? ;-D
I've been taking some computer classes, and reading some books, and one book I read was the 2011 edition of What Color is My Parachute? by Richard N. Bolles.
Billed as "A Practical Manual for Job-Hunters, and Career-Changers", I figured I had nothing to lose, and maybe something to gain, from reading it, and doing the exercises.
I want to share what I did, and if anyone has some thoughts to add, feel free to use the comments.
The "My Life Stories" Exercise has 7 Parts:
1. Almost 9 years ago I was encouraged to become a writer, online, in order to share my interests, hobbies, and opinions, and especially develope, and share, my creative writing skills of storytelling, and poetry.
I had little HTML skills, and no knowledge about using online tools to make a blog, and only 1 friend who knew anything about the new blogging community of the time.
I was encouraged to join a simple blog making site called Blogger, and this friend helped me set up my first blog, and gave me tips for some rudimentary skills I'd need to use to enter links, and other things, in a post.
I learned how to better use search engines, and how, & where, to meet other bloggers online.
As the years went by I learned to use more complex blogging platforms such as Movable Type, then Typepad, as well as text, and image editors, & a camera, & Flip Camcorder in order to share images on my blogs, and on YouTube.
I made several blogs, and connected with other bloggers, and blogging communities, sharing my stories, opinions, and pictures, with the world.
I made one of the first Bicycling Blogs (2003-2010), and a personal blog, on which I shred photos, stories, travels, humor, poetry, genealogy, and more. I created an online identity for my cat, which developed a life, & identity, of its own to such an extent that "He" was seperate, and distinct from me in "His" interactions with others online. ;-D
I closed my 1st personal blog (2002-2007), then opened this one, the same month, that no-longer focused on certain things I did before, and gave more attention to my creative writing telent, especially poetry, humor, and my Cat, & I joined Facebook &, later,Twitter.
I came to realize the Cat side of my online world was evolving into something special, and finally gave "Him" his own blog, & eventually a Twitter, and Facebook account.
This all led me to read my poetry in public, and make presentations on Cycling to audiences.
What came of all this?
No great financial rewards, so far, no huge audience of blog readers, the world over, like more famous bloggers, that's for sure. ;-D
However my bike blog inspired others to become one, too, & use their skills, knowledge, and resources, to do things I could only dream of.
Som of my other blogging, especially my stories, & poetry, as wella s some investigative journalism, gained praise, and atention, from bigger bloggers, well-known journalists, and even famous artists, poets, writers, mucisians, and politicians.
Nikita's cat Blog, begun a year ago, while also having an extremely modest audience, has done things, and gotten attention, that I never could have imagined when it was begun, and gives me hope, creatively speaking, for my future as a writer.
2. My first job (1984) was working in a bookstore, & I wanted to keep the job! ;-D
This was my first job, and I had no experience working with the public in a business environment.
I learned how to use a cash register, a credit card machine, a lottery machine, and eventually even a computer at work, in order to do the job.
I learned interpersonal skills that allowed me to deal with co-workers, customers, and representatives of businesses who sent us our stock.
I learned how to order, & return, merchandise, stock, and organize the store, and build, & assemble store displays.
I learned how to be a salesman, pitching products to customers.
Within 6 years I was so good at what I did that I was made store manager, and over the next 11 years I managed 3 other stores in the chain during the most challenging years in the history of the company.
What came of all this?
I gained confidence in myself, and the skills to do many things required of someone in a retail career.
This helped me in my next 2 retail jobs, a college bookstore clerk (2001), and a cashier at Target (2002-2004).
It even helped me be a better customer service person in my most recent job as a Directory Assistance Operator (2004-2010).
3. A decade ago I wanted to go on a trip to Phoenix, and another to Chicago.
I had a very limited budget, and so had to research online to find out plane, bus, & train fares to, and from, in those cities, as well as find a cheap hotel, and gather transit schedule info.
I put together all the info I needed, ordered info, & tickets, or found out where I could get them on the scene.
I bought tickets online, read, and used schedules, and used the various modes of transit, in unfamiliar locales, easily.
I thus saved time, & money, and had a great time on both trips.