Something New

Throughout my days, whether it’s at work, home, or hanging out with friends, I find myself trying to learn something. There’s always something to take away. There’s also plenty to give.

My days are typically filled with work – from working out, to actually going to the job that pays me, sending or receiving emails, trying to network with rescue organizations, and beyond, I’m always working on something.  I’ve learned a lot from the younger people who work for me…and I’ve learned a ton from the older ones, too. It’s interesting to subjects from another lense.

I’d say that overall I’m a realist. I have realistic views, expectations, and hopes for the future. I’m not asking for or seeking perfection: but I want to see people trying. Trying is often times different than doing – but sometimes all you can ask is that people are trying.

Working in the pet food industry has taught me a lot. Managing people has taught me even more. Doing my best to gain something from everyone has shown me a lot about life. Having wonderful friends and a supportive family has certainly helped along the way. I challenged myself to create time to write something today. Something. Anything. …to try to be part of this blogging experience with a great friend. …to try to pull my weight, or at least part of it. The longer I sit the more emails flood through. Questions, comments, concerns, things that require fairly immediate action, others that just want my opinion on what to do or how to do it.

Yesterday, I learned about plasma and just how cool and helpful it is. Today, I’ve learned (and really have known for a while) that good friends truly are a dime a dozen. My co-author has carried the weight and the work of this blog since conception. I am thankful for her and I learn from her and about her everyday from this opportunity.

What are you learning about today? Is it something new? …perhaps it’s something you’ve known and are revisiting. Share it with us so we can all learn together! 🙂

Timely

Halfway There! I’m not a writer, I’m a reader: Day 10

True story.

I was driving home from work one day a few weeks back and I usually decide between taking the back roads or the highway. I take 3 different interstates to get home; 422 to 271 to 8. On average, 422 never has traffic no matter what time of day I drive it. 8 usually has no traffic as well. Sandwiched in between the 2 is 271 that almost always has traffic in the morning and at 5pm. The only time I can expect no traffic is around holidays or if kids are out of school. All of sudden the highways are free, open roads and I can drive like a normal human (maybe speed a little, ssshh).

This particular day, I took a chance to drive the highway. Usually I like to check google maps to see if there are a bunch of red lines but I figured I’d left early enough that I’ll probably bypass it. It was a warm day, for Ohio anyway, and I had my sunroof shade open and I think I was listening to whatever was on the radio that day. I come upon the exit to 271 and instant stop. Traffic was at a standstill. So I did a little bit of maneuverability to shimmy up to the closest exit. I always keep other routes in the back of my head in case I’m trying to be somewhere fast. I’m okay with sacrificing open highway for traffic lights as long as I’m moving. Sitting in a hot car in the summer, in traffic, is the worst.

I get off the highway and onto this side road that turns into 8 eventually. This road starts as a bunch of schools, then groceries and once you cross the bridge it turns into an industrial parkway. There’s a place on the left that just has giant piles of pulverized concrete or sand with this tiny little gas station and then you have a bunch of different warehouses up an down both sides before it turns into the casino way.

I get to the point where the old Arhaus warehouse used to be and there’s stand still traffic again. At first I didn’t think anything of it. There is a stoplight ahead so I figure traffic will start moving soon as it turns green. Well the light turns green and the cars in my lane are still sitting. Then I notice cars on the other side are stopping as well. Automatic thought is car accident right? Which means I’ll be stuck a little longer. Well, the cars across the divide start moving and the cars to my right start moving as well but my lane isn’t moving at all. I begin to feel the symptoms of annoyance come forward because I just want to go home after my long day at work.

An opening appears for me to move around the line of cars that are stopped and get into the moving right lane. I take the chance and slowly crawl forward. I’m ready to continue my drive but I’m also curious to see what caused the backup. I get close to SUV that’s essentially parked and saw the most unexpected thing…

A skunk!! A very big skunk!! If I could have snapped a picture with my eyes, I would have! The skunk is basically pacing in circles. It was so unbelievable, I burst out laughing. My annoyance instantly evaporated. I quickly glanced around my surroundings wondering where the hell this huge skunk came from. This is basically an industrial wasteland. No forest or any sign of nature in the immediate distance yet here is this poor skunk. You can tell people, including myself, wanted to help somehow but at the same time not. That’s just one smell you do not want to take to work the next day. I continued my drive home thinking to myself that I hope the little (big) guy finds his way home. I also thanked Mr. Big Skunk for putting a smile on my face.

Jump to Soar

Majority of us have a Facebook account and we all get our individual “news” feed. Whether it be actual news from pages we follow or friends posting about their lives, we all feel some kind of way about the news we receive. A few weeks ago I decided I was going to try a career change. I came to this decision because I felt my life was just getting monumentally stressful for silly reasons. After many talks with myself, my husband and my friends, especially Mac, I decided it would be for the best. The thing is, I didn’t realize how hard it is to convince myself that this was the right thing to do. You see, after I graduated college the only work I could see myself doing was animal welfare in any capacity. All my experience was with animals and I had become very passionate about the field over the years. Don’t get me wrong, customer service is the main part of any job and those skills are easy to gain. That part was easy to say to myself, “yeah I can take these with me”. The main question was would I be able to learn something new; something complete and utterly different?

So I was going through my Facebook feed and I came across a YouTube video of Steve Harvey. In this short video he essentially gave out a piece of advice for people looking for a change. The words that stuck out to me the most were:

….you can soar but you’ve got to jump. Now here’s the problem, my friends. When you jump…… I can assure you one thing. Your parachute will not open right away. No, that’s the fear part. …… You’re going to hit those sides and those rocks. You’re going to tear you back out on that cliff. You’re going to get cuts and wounded…. but eventually your parachute will open and you’ll be soaring. ……… If you do not jump —– your parachute will never open. So you’re safe, but you will never soar. You’ve got to jump.

After watching that, I felt like my confidence got one giant push. Besides telling myself that I can succeed in a different career, I also told myself to just jump. This was 3 weeks ago and so far, I can say without a doubt, I am much happier for it. I miss aspects of my old job of course but my new life is just so much more.

Ironically enough, in the past week, two of my close friends have talked to me about their lives. Both are looking for a change in scenery. One is looking to get out of the retail working world because she feels like her life revolves around work. The other is looking to get out of the animal rescue business because dealing with puppy mill dogs is really taking a toll on her emotional health. Both want to change careers but, just like me, they’re either afraid of change or do not believe they are capable of doing and succeeding at something different. Can you guess what I told them? Besides going over what I went through in the past 3 weeks and how it affected me personally, I told them to soar. I told them you will never know how great you really are if you don’t try. I told them I have faith that they will succeed in any change that they make. Now, it’s in their thoughts. I’ve planted a seed and I can only hope they will do what they feel is best for them because at the end of the day I will be their parachutes and if they need me to help them soar then that is what I am going to do.

I leave you with another quote, from Denzel Washington’s image award speech, that appeared to me earlier this week and is also great advice to live by:

….never give up. Without commitment, you’ll never start but more importantly, without consistency, you’ll never finish. It’s not easy…….. Keep working, keep striving, never give up. Fall down seven times, get up eight. Ease is a greater threat to progress than hardship. …..Keep moving, keep growing, keep learning. See you at work.