Tuesday, August 6, 2013

The great debate: work

If anyone wants to chime in here, I could use some advice.

I am at a career crossroads. 

On the one hand is the known quality of my current job, which has pros and cons as all jobs do.  Pros: Great flexibility.  Proven success.  Good medical.  Decent salary.  Cons: An industry I am not passionate about.  Boredom.  Such a small business that there is little room for collaboration.  Everything is urgent, everything is important, so it's hard to move forward with making progress on bigger projects that interest me because it's all here and now.  (This is a result of my boss's personality, and she owns the place, so there isn't anything that can change about that.)

I get a month of vacation.  I stay home when my daughter is sick.

On the other hand is the great unknown.  I am really passionate about changing the world, and I have a lot of connections in the world of non-profit.  Tonight I had a woman from a local non-profit come over, and we discussed my upcoming speech (audience expected to be 1200) at a 5k event, as well as grant writing, as well as expanding the focus of the organization, as well as where their current marketing is succeeding and failing.  I know without hesitation that even in a couple of hours I helped her out a lot, and that the work I could do in that arena is valuable and useful. I would be passionate about doing that kind of development for a non-profit that did work I believe in.  This is a breast cancer organization, but I could be equally happy to work on child development, literacy, eradication of poverty, homelessness, health screening, women's rights, women's health, etc.

Pros of nonprofit: Passion about what I do.  More structure in a bigger organization (which I'm craving right now).  More growth opportunities in the field.  Decent salary (it might be hard to come in where I am now, but there would be growth potential from there if I can hit that much to begin), better benefits (potentially).  More intellectual stimulation.

Cons:  Less free time, less flexibility.  The fear of the unknown.

Do I choose ease and flexibility, or passion and changing the world? I am so fortunate to feel these choices....but can't I have it all?

I know what I want to do.  I know what I'm capable of.

Shoot, I don't need advice.  I need a plan.


Over two years ago, when I asked my (ex) husband for a divorce, I had no idea how I was going to keep a roof over my head.  A year ago at this time I was still completely overwhelmed by all that I needed to do, all that I had yet to accomplish.  But now, I feel my feet solidly under me.  I have a track record again professionally, and I can prove that what I've done adds value.  I manage my life well, and I'm proud of that.  It seems slightly insane to want to shake things up so soon, but on the other hand, this is the one life that I am given, and I want to live it thoroughly, completely.  I don't want to live my good enough life, I want to live fully and richly.

I believe that I can change the world, that I have that power.  I believe that I can make my dreams come true.  I have to be careful about career moves at this late stage of the game - I've missed so many years already - but I wonder if I stay put if I will regret that even more.


Signed up for a half marathon.
Signing up for a writing class (as much to keep me going as anything else).
Signed up to do lots of volunteer work for a great organization, primarily speaking, fundraising, and grant writing but they want my marketing input, too.
Leaving on a camping vacation this weekend.
School starts - a new school - for Katherine in early September.
Keeping the household running.

And you know what?  Somewhere in there some dates will sneak in. I  don't know about love, or when that will appear, but I still feel playful.  (I'm averting my eyes to avoid that flirtatious thing I've got going on but lately it seems like I just can't help myself!)

It's a bit busy.  Maybe that means it's time to shake it all up again.  A new job - do I have it in me to find it, to make it happen, to do it well?  I'd like a raise, too, while we're at it.

I've got some thinking to do.  Please wish me luck!

1 comment:

  1. that's a hard one but it sounds to me like you really want to take the non-profit job. And the personal satisfaction, in addition to the professional challenge, will be huge. Doing something so meaningful makes you feel so fulfilled even if it life is hectic. I think you are ready if you do. You are doing GREAT!