Saturday, 9 July 2016

Inspired by job applications (the post, not me....)

I can't believe it has been almost a month since I last posted anything.  It's been well over a month since I actually felt compelled to write.
And now, on a rainy Saturday in July, I am suddenly compelled.

So much for disciplining myself to the practice of writing every day.

Me and self-discipline are old flames, and currently we are not on the best of terms (if we ever were).   
Like much in my life, I am either all in, or all out.  No half arsed effort, it's either all consuming, fueled by the fire of passion, takes over my entire life-is my reason for breathing....or it's just not.  I am not only referring to writing, this is pretty much how I tackle everything, from cleaning and housework, to (dare I say it) parenting, work and life.

The thing with self-discipline, is the pressure you put onto yourself, and that is indoctrinated into us by society; the whole "to be a success, or be worth any value you have to be self-disciplined, you ought to push yourself", and all that shit.

When it comes down to doing shit that brings you joy; makes your soul sing and all that jazz, there is never any need for struggle; there is no force, because you want to do it with all your heart and soul. The concept of  self-discipline (my personal perception of it), is that it seems to place added pressure onto already high expectations of how we think we ought to be; how our life ought to look.  But that's foolish in itself; life and each moment, and us as human beings are what we are, and things are what they are.  There is no need for expectation.  Everything just is.  Whether we choose to see all for what it is, or whether we struggle and fight and resist cause it ain't up to our standards?  Well I guess that is down to personal choice and the motto of life which one subscribes to. 

For me personally, high expectation and struggle just don't flick the light switch for me.  If I fail at sticking to my own goals, I end up hating on myself.  
And that is no fun at all.

So screw the goals, or actually, screw the high expectation which is placed on achieving the goal which ultimately leads to the harsh self-criticism when a goal isn't reached in the way we envision it ought to have been.

If there's passion there and you wanna go hell-for-leather towards something you want - do it.  If/when that passion fizzles out (which may/may not happen) learn what is to be learnt from the process and move on to the next thing....
Moving forward without pressure.  

Which leads me to the whole point of this particular post.

Pressure.  Do you work well under pressure?
I'll take a bet that the majority of us will affirm a positive to that statement when asked in interviews and on application forms for employment.
But do you really?
I think a definition of pressure is required.  And the context to what is meant by pressure when asked.
I love a bit of pressure when I'm writing, it gives me a good kick up the arse with a shot of adrenaline, knowing I have to finish to a tight deadline.  And generally I have brought that pressure upon myself by procrastinating in the space between being given an assignment or task to the moment when I choose to get down to business (two days before?).

Any other type of pressure though?  To be in an environment when you are required to be constantly 'on' for the whole time you're there?  With every move and moment being clocked, and timed and scrutinised?  And then the work you put your best effort into doesn't even receive acknowledgment? When your contribution isn't valued?  
Fuck that kind of pressure.
No one gets paid enough to deal with that shit.

It's like the ' needs to be good at multi-tasking', when most of us mindfulness freaks know that it's all about focusing on one thing at a time.
Yet on an application form, or in an interview we're all, "Sure, I ADORE multi-tasking, it's what I do, it's how I live my life!!!"

When I multi-task, I fuck up.
I can work on more than one project, sure, but not all at the same time.
My best work?  When I focus 100% on the task at hand.

Focusing 100% on the task at hand is the springboard for my next point.

If we set ourselves too many goals, it would be assumed inevitable that at least one wont be attained. The solution?  Set one major goal, and then work your arse off to achieve it before planning the next one.

My current goal:  To create interesting and engaging content about a trending topic of interest each week, and post the end product on to this here blog (with the clause that some weeks it may be a topic which is of high interest and importance to me, but may not be 'trending' in the traditional sense).

A solid two weeks of job searching and applications provided me with inspiration from which to muse and ponder that I'd never imagined would occur.
It also led me to thinking that I am not of the same elk of the conscientious none-to-fivers (Honestly, I already knew this from much trial and error in my earlier employed years).

I possess a solid and strong work ethic, and I put my heart into the work I do (which is currently unpaid and done because of my shear love of it).  Yet, when I read over job specifications, I do sometimes feel it would be fraudulent of me to say that I can multi-task and work well under pressure, because, although I could, and do, it would be completely dependent on the type of work and the environment in which I am working.
And I stick by the sentiment that we all produce quality work when we are focused upon the task at hand.  Multi-tasking needs to take a leave of absence for a while.
Quality over quantity.

I'm pretty sure that this post could do me out of a few jobs.  But if you were an employer who valued quality of work over quantity, then I am definitely your girl!  And if the role involves writing, well, that would be a dream and a pleasure.....

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