It's a GAD GAD World
Thursday, February 03, 2005

I've had an epiphany of sorts. And I've learned some amazing things in this past week.

There is a gentleman at Prestigious Institution who acts as sort of an ombudsman for the place. I will call him "Jack". He's a Catholic priest, so anything told to him is kept confidential thru "the sanctity of the confessional". I've spent a good deal of time talking to him in the past 2 days, and he's given me exceptional advice. Basically what he's told me is that the situation I'm in is not going to change no matter how much I talk about it, so it's best to shut up. Not only that, but if I keep saying how hard it is, it may create the impression that I'm not qualified for the job and give them reason to fire me. He also suggested that I compliment the powers-that-be whenever possible. People love to hear good things about themselves, so if I make them feel good, they'll be less inclined to view me negatively.

I also discussed my GAD with him, and I told him about my yearly talk with the students and how much I enjoyed it. Turns out he battles with chronic depression. So he understands the stigma.

I came to another realization. I've been contemplating the thought of leaving this position. (Not actively plotting to leave, just contemplating it.) And the thought of leaving brings me a wonderful sense of peace. I'm thinking that perhaps this is a sign. I'm not 100% sure it's the answer, but the thought of it makes me feel good enough that I'm making tentative plans. Right before I got this job I was contacted by one of my temp agencies and told about a fabulous receptionist job at a non-profit. At the time I told them to go ahead & submit my resume, then they told me not to hold my breath waiting. I called them back this week just to get an update on the situation. Turns out that they may not be hiring right away, but that I was still in the running. Also, I may have mentioned that I had an interview at a CPA firm the day I got dumped by the piano store. I just sent the head honcho an email asking him to keep me in mind if/when they do decide to hire someone new. Thirdly, Prestigious Institution has an affiliate that is not connected to their job website. In fact, the only way to submit resumes is to snail mail them. The affiliate is also where I met my doctor (he's no longer there). I would love to work there. And depending on the job, it might be saner.

I've toyed with the idea of doing psychotherapy for a while now. I've never done it because 1) my previous experiences with therapy have been miserable, 2) I couldn't afford it. But now I think I might want to meet with Jack on a regular basis, even though he's not a "therapist". First, he gives good advice. Secondly, he's free! Thirdly, he's convenient--our offices are in the same building. Fourthly, if I do decide to start looking for another job, I could use him as a reference.

Here's another thing I've learned: I just read this article about setting goals. It said that people who have no goals in life spend a lot of time being dissatisfied--life just happens to them, and they're forced to react instead of act. THAT'S ME!! I've never really had any goals in life. The article also said that people who follow material goals (to get a high-status job, buy a fancy car, etc.) instead of intrinsic goals (i.e., self-improvement) are unhappier and more likely to waste time comparing themselves to others. (I sure as hell did a lot of that when I was un[der]employed.)

So I guess if I want to be happy, I have to start setting some goals for myself. Now if I could just figure out what they are...

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