The Hazy World of Unemployment

In this strange change-of-jobs time, I find myself sort of wandering around my world bumping into boredom, anxiety, and ennui.* Every so often I feel a wave of gratitude that I can take a 3-hour nap in the afternoon or learn to throw pots with a new friend at her studio in the next county. (Take heart, I’m not enjoying this too much – that wave of gratitude is rinsed away by a barrage of guilt that I’m  not contributing to my household.)

One of the activities occupying my time is networking events. I’ve found a group I like and I’ve been visiting them, learning a lot. Like, I know nothing about business. NOTH. ING. My business plan has been…pass out business cards and do my “real” job until someone calls me for a writing job. I’m also woefully unskilled at sales. You have to be good at sales at least a little bit to sell your small business. It makes me uncomfortable to talk about my VAST WRITING TALENT! and how I can MAKE YOUR BUSINESS BETTER!!! And I do this graphic recording thing which is dang hard to explain in a way that makes people want to pay me to do it.

In an effort to educate myself, I’ve been schooling with all the resources I can find for free – books, videos, podcasts. Stuff on how to market yourself, how to be a better sales person. I read everything networking contacts suggest if I can get it from the library. I go to any free or cheap meetings I can get to.

And I don’t know what I don’t know so I just kind of bumble around so far. A sales coach I met with offered to teach me a system for business but it was going to cost me $400 a month. I’ve no doubt in this coach’s ability but I have doubts in my ability to pay my utilities without that $400 so it’s an unkind paradox.

I haven’t had any interviews for regular jobs. My first thought is, “This is God The Universe and Everything telling me to go, be a writer and graphic facilitator,” but if this is what that is going to be like, no thanks, it sucks.

I also get overwhelmed with there being so many OPTIONS for my time. With wide open days, nothing MUST get done today or it won’t get done ever. I could do any of a zillion things and sometimes I just go take a nap instead. Thank goodness I’m not an emotional eater because if I were, I think I’d be a candidate for some TLC show at this point.








*Ever since Gorey’s Neville died of ennui I have loved that word.



  1. I was curious about the graphic recording service you offer (sorry, I’m not a corporate executive who can book you for the next corporate brainstorming thingie!) and took a look. This seems like a really innovative and valuable addition to the ho-hum easel and whiteboard records of workshops and such events. It provides a permanent visual record of the spirit of the event, something that could go up on the wall to remind people of their insights & resolves made under the influence of the group process. Your webpage should mention this aspect of it and show an example, a photo, in addition to the video. And getting the (what do you call it?) up on a wall is an ad for you, accompanied by your business card (perhaps oversize for this purpose). Maybe try & get a testimonial quotation from someone. Do you network with anybody who is doing motivational events? Seems like natural for that; after the inspiration of the event is past, your (gotta have a name!) still inspires people & gives them a sense of accomplishment for having been there. It reifies & vivifies what is a rather intangible happening, makes it visible and bright and capable of sparking peoples’ thoughts & feelings all over again. I think it’s really cool, can you tell?

    One of the hardest things for many of us is to see the implications of our skills, and appreciate our own accomplishments, and then make ourselves get that out in front of people. Sometimes it helps to exchange this with someone else, you tell them how you’d promote and state the value of their skills and accomplishments and they do the same for you. I know when I look back on half-forgotten things I got done or was in charge of, my tendency is to think, Yeah, I did that, no big deal, while if someone else told me they’d done it I’d feel it was an accomplishment.

  2. Oh no! I posted my comment (awaiting moderation) and then looked at another of your blog posts, “Thanks, Jobfox…The Writing Spider Hates You Now” , and I’m afraid I might have sounded like Madeline the Decepticon telling you you aren’t conveying your achievements strongly enough! And now I have this great service to sell you…except I don’t. I just got enthusiastic about your graphic recording and thought about how to promote it. Jobfox sure sounds like a con.

  3. Thanks for your enthusiasm! I continue to revise how to talk to folks about graphic recording (that’s what we pros call it but you can call it visual mapping or visual thinking or big ol pictures on the wall). I continue to improve my story of the work and how it works. There are, in fact, several pictures on my website of graphic recordings – and also I’m also working on how to make my site let people contribute comments but so far I’m technostupid and can’t work it out. : )

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