Working in an office environment can be monotonous. When you hear a discreet, but intentional, PSSST… when you pass by one’s cubicle, you hope that this summoning will add a little UMMPH to your day. When the summoner starts the conversation with “Chile…I got tea!” you are compelled to do a happy dance if it weren’t for the fact that you are in a dry, stale, sterile office environment where the quiet level rivals that of a mouse peeing on cotton. You lean in to listen because you just know, THIS RIGHT HERE, is going to be good.
Unless our attention is awakened in such a dramatic fashion, however, how often do we lean in to listen-really listen and absorb what the everyday, run of the mill activities of the day are telling us? Probably not often enough. I encourage you to stop…or slow down and just…listen.
Blogging is a new activity for me. In this first week, I have learned a lot, already; 1) I need a plan-a content calendar because winging it is frustrating; 2) consistency in blogging and posting during an optimal timeframe for viewing is important; 3) the act of marketing takes marketing…this is never-ending, which brings to mind, anything worth having is GOING to be earned; 4) grow a thick skin quickly because everyone isn’t going to like every post and just because people aren’t ready to hear a particular view, doesn’t mean the opinion still isn’t worth being voiced; and 5) enjoy the journey and know the road is rough, but the “scenery”-the moments- are breathtaking.
I checked out my email and noticed one from a recruiter I had worked with for a particular 9-5. It read, ” Lauren the decision was tough, but unfortunately, you were not chosen.” As hard as I worked to prepare for that interview, surprisingly, I was relieved I wasn’t chosen. Briefly, I thought, this is what the start of a mental breakdown looks like. Fool, you have a mortgage to pay and health concerns to manage. YOU NEED BENEFITS. As quickly, I startled myself when I heard out of my mouth, without thought, Thank You Jesus!
I went to get my brows done the other day, this is an every 6 week pampering ritual. My brow lady and I have become friends and we have come to have brief, but very meaningful bitch sessions over the years. Quite therapeutic for me lately. Our topics of discussion vary. This session’s topic, a play that is currently at a neighborhood theatre about Brown v Board of Education. I was intrigued due to the subject matter AND because the community in which it is running- it’s just not the most likely to engage in this type subject matter, or so I thought.
Then the next day I am in an entrepreneurship training class and I get a call from a woman who I haven’t spoken to in years, like dang near a decade. She saw one of my blog posts and hit me up on FB to connect. She suggested grabbing a coffee and a slice of pie at a little coffee shop in the valley. Ok…cool, what the hell?! I am trying to be more open to people and occurrences, ya know, enjoy life for what it is…the moments.
Like an infomercial, “but wait…there’s more!” I am babysitting my friend’s 2 year old the next morning, prior to having the coffee and pie. My friend works from home in the afternoon, so we have time after her conference call to suck down a couple of cold frosty ones–why oh why is it 107 in Los Angeles in October??!?! Anyway…having cold frosty ones is a run of the mill occurrence. What is not, is the kind of conversation we had. My buddy isn’t one to voice support for me, usually. While I appreciate the “suck it up buttercup” mentally she has, because it doesn’t allow me to wallow in pity, a little encouragement, periodically, especially as I embark upon an unfamiliar path to begin a new career, is needed and appreciated. I guess she thought the same because she shared some pearls of wisdom and encouraging words. I was surprised…VERY pleasantly surprised and TOUCHED.
I went for coffee and pie later that evening and had an absolutely WONDERFUL conversation with an old friend. It was like no time had passed from the time I last saw her to now. I really didn’t think our meeting would last that long. We shut the coffee shop down! More surprising to me was how happy she was for me that I am starting to blog…focusing on my desire and finally setting a goal to publish a couple of novels and a collection of short stories. She also shared with me the story of how she met her fiancé…and then it clicked.
While I keep running a script in my head that this goal is attainable and I voice that I have faith that things will work out, I am not TOTALLY convinced. Well after connecting with these three friends throughout this week, during “run of the mill” encounters and now reflecting upon the good time and conversation I had with each, it was when I slowed down…leaned in and really LISTENED, I heard and so “Chile…I Got Tea!”
What you need and/or the desires of your heart are found at the most unexpected times and it is rare to find them in your zone of comfort and familiarity. While the message you listen to in the moment, is one you need and you appreciate for what it is, there is a more important message normally, to be HEARD. The recruiter and these three women were “pimped out”-by God. He used them to assure me of several things which most writers and encore performers in any profession should remember, 1) Listen to me, I know what is best for you-my child; 2) You are on the write (right) path; just keep moving toward your goal, and 3) I got this…just do you!
For golden nuggets of info, helpful to writers in their creative and business process, check out @brianklems @writersdigest http://www.writersdigest.com/online-editor