It’s pretty amazing how the matter of a few days can flip your entire life upside down. Strolling through Ikea with the wife this past Tuesday afternoon, I received a phone call that has changed everything about our lives. By its end I accepted a job offer, bringing my jobs-I-quit-this-month to five. That’s right, I quit five jobs in September.

The offer was from a company I have been pining for and to which I had submitted my CV back in June. I had advanced past the initial review phase and was granted an interview. It seemed to go well, and I was advised I would be contacted for a second interview within the week. That was the last contact I had with them, and of course after a certain period of time assumed that road to be closed. Yet suddenly on Tuesday they called, apologizing for the disconnect and actually praising my CV. After a year of fighting and applying for jobs within the career for which I have spent the last five years in school, such praise is appreciated and needed. One begins to wonder, to question, to reevaluate what they believed to be of high value and consider why no one else can see it. So after the long-awaited second interview, and tentative offer was made, and by the following morning an outright job offer was sitting in my inbox to get paid to do what I loved, to get paid to play in the dirt.

So I have had to resign from my new job that replaced my new job that replaced my two jobs, as well as notify the museum I volunteer at that I won’t be able to help out for the foreseeable future. On Monday I drive out to a site for five days here in Florida, to process paperwork and get aligned to their methods. Then the following Monday I’m flying northward for a project that will keep me in the midwest for the next four to six weeks. Like I said, upside down.

My wife of course is amazing and more supportive than any man deserves, and we are quickly striving to align our life to this new reality. I still can’t get my head around it, feeling like it’s a long time coming and completely out of the blue all at once. I knew that September was going to be the harbinger of change, which is what inspired me to quit the two part-time gigs in favor of more stable work with actual days off. It also is what inspired Project 21Days for which this new journal was to be the record. Sadly despite all the positives, Project 21days was perhaps the most tragic casualty of this whirlwind of change. The sudden shift in priorities and new list of things I now need to get done before these two trips put a halt to the project, and I have not had the time to write, lift, run, etc (though I still read everyday of course). Nearly made it to the full 21 days… sort of a shame, but well within reason. I have new patterns to implement right now.

The greatest lesson from this week though lies in the faith system I have relied upon for a decade or more. I have always believed that when you have goals, work hard, be true, honest and steadfast, the universe unfolds. When you are dedicated, and clear, and work on the steps necessary for your ultimate goals, the universe unfolds to provide resources, help you through chaos and provide a clear path. That faith has been shaken as of late. Now past a year since moving here, applying endlessly for the opportunity to do what I love, what I have studied and been trained to do, the universe didn’t seem to be unfolding. I bought a new car on the faith that it was a necessary tool, and quit my jobs to shake up my reality and redirect my attention. Yet the car had a surprise mechanical issue, and the job thing wasn’t quite heading where I wanted it. Then the car thing resolved itself, and the job thing, well, I think it clearly turned out better than I could’ve ever imagined. I stayed the course despite the whirlwind, and the universe unfolded.

So I keep the faith, and I keep on digging.

Adding rocks to the pile…

Posted: September 22, 2014 in Uncategorized

As I have been terrible at utilizing this, I am attempting to create a post from my phone. Let’s see how my patience holds out.

So week two has begun, and the habits I’ve introduced seem to be falling into place with greater ease. The run every other day and the workouts are becoming easier. I am finding my time to write and read everyday, often exceeding my minimum time commitments I’ve established. The Spanish lessons are likewise quite fluid. Though I’m realizing I need more time and investment there to establish it as a second language.

On top of the habits, employment has become interesting. I am in the last week of both my part-time jobs (one ends Wed, the other Fri). I worked my first day at their original replacement the day before yesterday, but as of now I’m terminating that path and starting a brand new one this Saturday. It’s a tad peculiar that at this time in my life while taking on all these new daily habits, for this brief moment I have four jobs.

Despite the appearance of having all the jobs, come this Monday I’ll be down to one, and have my first pair of days off in recent memory. The pairing of two part-time jobs for the past year has meant working 7 days a week for most of that time, with a few breaks scattered throughout the last 12 months. The final resolution on taking this new gig is that it will keep me open to engage with archaeology and explore what I can do with my writing.

On a personal level, it means days off with the wife, and more time to appreciate the everyday. I did not spend the past five years in school and move to sunny Florida to start down another 9-5 career path. I did it to expand my works, and I intend for it to continue expanding until my last breath.

One Week In

Posted: September 20, 2014 in Uncategorized
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So my original intention was to utilize this everyday as I began Project 21 Days, yet of course like all best laid plans that has gone awry. Thankfully the plan itself has not, and I have completed the first six days of the journey with every goal completed thus far. That isn’t to say it hasn’t had it’s difficult moments.

First, to summarize. In the previous post I simply shared the tasks I had come up with, their frequency within the week and the amount of time I needed to commit to them on each of their scheduled days. This is the actual schedule I created based on those goals:

So far the hardest thing has been balancing work and some of the harder, more demanding requirements like lifting and writing. The reading, spanish and running/swimming have been a bit easier to incorporate into my daily life (though the running/swimming has taught me very quickly how out of shape I am). Somehow though I have hit my marks everyday, and am confident I can continue to do so over the remainder of these 21 days.

Overall it has all been greatly rewarding. The reading I had already gained momentum on so that was not a challenge, though it’s useful having that expectation to keep my nose in a book. The Spanish lessons likewise were easy to jump back into as I’ve only recently been getting lax about it. The lifting has been an incredible challenge but also one of the most rewarding. It feels fantastic, like a battle every time against previous limitations. The added changes to my diet have been a little tricky, but it was basically picking up where I left off months ago.

The writing has perhaps been the most rewarding, despite being difficult to find the hour everyday. I really want to see these characters and this story develop and grow, and the more I focus on it, purposefully (and with great effort) blocking all other distractions, the better the work seems to become.

That is perhaps the greatest lesson so far in all of this, that my greatest hurdle is my attention span, which constantly wants to jump from writing to reading to the web to a game to any other random shiny thing. Besides having blocked Facebook & Reddit (though I think this thing automatically posts to FB, so if you comment on it I won’t see it), I have an app that basically serves as a focus timer. It allows me my task for a certain period, gives me a five minute break, then puts me back into it. While the app is running I can’t do anything else, and I keep catching myself reaching for the phone or my book and then having to force my hands back to the keyboard. The hope is that over these 21 days (and beyond of course) I can recondition my mind to have greater focus, to hone my attention on the task at hand until it’s time for another.

That’s it for today. Had to cram this in as well, and now I need sleep before working two jobs tomorrow. I know in one of my outgoing posts on FB I mentioned giving notice to my two current jobs that I was leaving. While I am currently finishing up my last week or so at both places, I have two other jobs I am starting this week alongside my volunteering at the Historical Center in Tampa. So for right now, I have all the jobs. Things will of course simmer down over the next few weeks, but this coming one… it’s going to be helluva time.

Project 21Days

Posted: September 12, 2014 in Uncategorized

This is the beginning…
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