Motivation for Monday – Pineapples and Fear

This week, the kids finally went back to school. I had a few days respite from roasting chickens to sustain Son 1 and Son 2 and I had the house to myself for a few days, but motivation has been lacking and it has been a tough time for this Career Changer.
Reader, I had a birthday….

It came hurtling by last weekend when I wasn’t looking, knocked me off my feet and left me feeling very wobbly indeed. I was clearly unprepared for this particular birthday and have been left with an uneasy feeling that time is running out.  I am shocked by the realisation that it is now a year since I returned from a fantastic trip to Costa Rica – significant because it was this trip that was partly to blame for my reevaluation of my life. Costa Rica is the happiest nation on the planet and visiting this Garden of Eden when your own life is a misery obviously has life-changing implications….

Motivation - Pineapples

In an effort to keep the focus, here are the good bits.

In the last two weeks I have… Continue Reading →

Motivation For Monday – 31st March 14

During this career change project of mine, I sometimes find Mondays a little strange.  In my previous life in the Corporate world, I suffered badly from The Sunday Night Blues – which often started as early as breakfast on a Sunday,  I rarely managed to get to sleep on a Sunday night and when I did finally drift off it was a restless series of duvet-thrashing naps.  Lists running through my head of all the things I hadn’t managed to get done over the weekend, and the overwhelming feeling that yet another long, miserable week was just beginning.

In my new life, the impending arrival of Monday is less traumatic, but also less significant.   I have chosen Monday to be one of my freelance work days, but I want to avoid Monday becoming just another work day.  I have found some great blogs recently and have been inspired by Workerbeefree’s inspiring Friday Fess-up reflecting on her week as a Career Pioneer, and also by the lovely 3childrenandit’s Friday Favourites,  so I am choosing Monday to be my Motivation Day – the day that I reflect on the highlights of the previous week, to spur me on to keep trying new things and meeting new people.

Continue Reading →

The Work and Family Show 2014 – Shouldn’t we be Balancing Everyone’s Work-Life?

Yesterday I spent the day at ExCel London visiting The Work and Family Show 2014.  I have never been before (the irony being that I never had time before of course), and decided to let fate decide if I should attend by entering a competition for tickets being run by Chiswick Mum on her blog.  Luckily I won and fate let me go (Thank you @Chiswick_mum!).

I was at the show all day and enjoyed some really interesting panel discussions including fine-tuning your job-applications, how to borrow money to start your own business, balancing your life and working flexibly.

Although some of the workshops covered Diversity and Gender issues, The Work and Family Show 2014 doesn’t specifically promote itself as a Women’s event, and a couple of the most interesting panel members were men, so where were all the menContinue Reading →

There are Courses…and there are MOOCs

Last week, I started two very different courses and they are worlds apart.

Firstly, I am doing a web design and WordPress course at a Local Authority College.  The ‘Digital Suite’  is a very small room with a very large radiator, belting out heat.  There are ten tiny workstations wedged into the room.  Fortunately, only seven people have signed up, otherwise we would struggle to squeeze in.  We will all be sitting in this tiny room for 3 hours every Monday afternoon, trying to get to grips with the heat from the radiator and building a website.  As with all group courses the pace of study is likely to be determined by the slowest person, and I am hoping it’s not me! Continue Reading →

New Year Hopes Not-Resolutions

I have never broken
a New Year’s Resolution…fact.  Truth is I have never made any to break.  Rather than give up drinking
in January, I did once pledge to drink every day for the whole month.  Something that I achieved way too easily.  However, since I am currently at what can only be described as a turning point in my life, I am allowing myself a few very simple ‘hopes’ for my new life in 2014. Continue Reading →

I’m doing a MOOC..yes a MOOC

I am allowing myself plenty of time to achieve my career change and one of the luxuries I am giving myself is the chance to do some courses.  Some are aimed at improving my skills and make me more employable, some will be an attempt to reignite my long-defunct creativity, but one is just for my own self-indulgent pleasure.
Next week I am taking part in a MOOC – a Massive Open Online Course.  The Introduction to Forensic Science course is being run by the University of Strathclyde and will be the first course to be run by Futurelearn, a private company owned by The Open University.  There is no formal qualification, the courses are purely for pleasure and for me this is simply an itch that I needed to scratch.  Continue Reading →

2013 – What did I learn?

I didn’t expect much from 2013, just another year grinding away in the same old job 11 hours a day, a bit of commuting and then all my ‘real life’ squeezed in to the periphery.  I knew I was fed up,  I even hoped that I would be made redundant to spur me into changing my life, but each round of redundancies left me untouched, sitting, staring at my wall of computer screens.

My back ached all day, every day, from being slumped in front of a screen for more than 20 years.  For 18 months I had physio for my knees, knees that simply didn’t work anymore as my legs had forgotten how to work properly.  My physio pointed out that I wasn’t alone, I am part of the first generation who have sat still for decades, we are the guinea pigs that prove that technology might save time and headcount, but when you reach the point of conducting your whole life from a screen then you are no longer living your life…or using your body parts.