Friday, 3 December 2010

How've you been?

I really think we should be hibernating. Winter is not meant for working, but working's what I've been doing.
So I've missed a few Tuesdays. Not in the real world of course. Nope, I've been working.

We found that our house wasn't earthed, and I wanted to pay the wonderful electrician for all the work he did to deprive our home of its ability to kill us at any given time. I had to go out and earn that. Also I'd splashed out on stuff I needed to complete projects, like perfumery materials and wool (different projects, obviously, or maybe not), and to replace things that fell to bits like washing machines and socks. The result was that I had to give up my life-changing - and hibernating - time to earn my keep.

To be fair, when I go out to work I get to think, have ideas, write, or train other people to write better. It could be worse.I usually relish the chance to do a bit of writing training, but when some of those people are in the room against their will because they are unhappy with their jobs, running a workshop can be like six hours of swimming through mud. At the end I feel like I need to be plugged into a recharger for a week and a half.

So it made me think, after working for a couple of weeks with people who don't enjoy their work, how outstandingly lucky I am to have got to a place in life where I can do things I love - mostly. I've been a council gardener, worked in media planning at an ad agency, sold space in a newspaper (but not enough of it), played in bands, taught yoga and been paid for writing about handmade soap. It's led to a working life I enjoy: thinking, advising people on their businesses (and I really love that), having ideas, writing and teaching.

Today, I got a new book. It's called Job Hunting 3.0 and it's by Richard Maun, who I met at a little do for authors. I don't want a job, not exactly, but I do want to keep working freelance with nice people and it's got many a handy hint that will help me do the preparation for my meetings with them. (I went to one last week, and I was so out of practise, and so tired after the mud-swimming, that I was useless!) So in a roundabout kind of way, I'm recommending that if you don't like your job,you buy this book, study it and go find a new one that you do like. If you know people who don't like their jobs, get it for them for Christmas. That way, when I go out to run a writing workshop, I'll be more likely to meet people who really want to be there.

 I hope you're happy in your working life this week, that you've left a bit of space for diong something unusual, and that if you don't love what you do, you'll consider taking a leap in a positive direction. And now, I'm going to wrap myself in thick woollies and get back to my hibertation.

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