It Lives!!

At long last, my dream is coming to fruition. I have searched the majority of my life for an occupation with two very high hurdles. Being able to set my own schedule and something I enjoyed enough to keep at it long enough to truly engage me. I think I have finally succeeded in both of these goals, but I wanted to share why they were so important to me.

First off, I needed something that would allow me to create my own schedule. One of the truly difficult parts of mental illness is that it doesn’t always agree with what you had planned. Some days I wake up and just simply can’t get out of bed. Other days, I can’t go to sleep because I am filled with so much energy and creativity that I just can’t stop. I can plan whatever I want to, but the reason I am on disability is that I don’t always have control of what I am capable of. I find that genuinely working four days a week is about all I can focus on recently. Right after Laurie died, I could barely focus on the next few minutes. So making my own schedule becomes paramount. Starting my own business seems like the best way to do this.

Secondly, I needed something that could keep my interest. I have had numerous jobs in several different fields. Vaguely related, but not completely. I tried telephone jobs (customer service, mostly. REALLY hated sales jobs) but that was unskilled labor and I felt like I just wasn’t suited is the most polite way I can explain my distaste for these jobs. I tried graphic design, but discovered I didn’t have the patience to put in the time to make a name for myself. So I was just tweaking other peoples designs. I ended up hating the job. Loved the work, hated the job.

I tried doing consulting on computer education with clients. The initial idea I had was to help people find the solutions to what they needed with what they had. I was focused on Apple products at the time, and they offered a pretty large selection of tools that came with the OS that allowed most consumers the abilities to do ninety percent of the tasks they needed to accomplish. But this quickly devolved from teaching people creative solutions to explaining repetitive, boring office tasks to people who would have been much better suited to typewriters or pen and quills.…I kind of backed into this opportunity to do public speaking by volunteering for NAMI (National Alliance on Mental Illness). I started off with Crisis Intervention Training (or CIT) and In Our Own Voices (or IOOV) presentations. I was enthralled. I am a performer at heart. It is easier BY FAR for me to talk to a room of forty or fifty people than it is to talk to individuals or a group of two or three. So, doing public speaking has been a tremendous blessing. It is a rush, I come out feeling very energized. It makes me feel like I am doing something positive with the talents I have.

And that is the very key right there. Doing something with the talents I have that gets me what I want is what I define as success. That’s really all that any of us want. And so, I am looking forward to this new venture, this new chapter.

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