Please Allow Me to Re-Introduce Myself
I took a bit of a break from writing. I thought everyone, including myself, deserved an answer as to why. It’s quickly written, with little revision, because it took me so long to understand what to write and even harder to go back and read it.
Almost year ago today, I moved back to New Orleans and was promptly confronted with the reality that finding a job in marketing might be impossible. Fast forward two months, dozens of withdraws from my savings account, and a short stent as a day laborer for my uncle later: I accept a position at a “boutique” marketing firm.
I was thrilled for the opportunity to learn skills in a client-facing role, like how to create budgets, go to tape cutting events, project manage, and coordinate news crews.
But for the first time in my career, I felt like an imposter. Despite over delivering on the duties I was hired to perform, I was told the reason I couldn’t get a raise was based on my underwhelming performance on administrative data entry tasks and my lack of expertise in other niche marketing areas.
I wasn’t excelling at the aspects of my role that had nothing to do with my expertise. My boss and I tag team tortured myself over it. I felt guilty, incompetent, worthless, and even, at times, stupid.
To bolster my esteem and bank account, I worked two other freelance jobs. I was making twice as much per hour with these other companies, but I was telling myself I didn’t deserve it. I did, however, deserve to work 60+ hours a week.
Six months ago, a friend sent me an interesting job posting. Less than a week later, they offered me the job.
Realizing I could never get paid enough to deal with the gaslighting and abuse, I dumped my old boss over the phone like a shitty high school boyfriend. (Which I still feel a bit guilty about).
I was almost overwhelmed with the welcome from this new company. Immediately I felt valued, respected, and trusted. I began trying to shed the feelings of abuse, self-doubt, and shame, but I was scared I would disappoint them.
Eager to set an aggressive pace and exceed expectations, my job quickly took ahold of my life. I worked endlessly, skipped meals, and slept little and poorly. No one told me to be this maniac. I guess I thought I deserved it.
My personal life got complicated in several areas for multiple reasons (due only in part to my intensified and ridiculous work life).
I came home every day absent of energy, appetite, or general motivation for life. My relationships with friends and family were suffering and, for the most part, I was having trouble caring. It was what I deserved.
I decided to take a (sort of) vacation and went to Germany for Oktoberfest and friends. Halfway through, I decided to punt the work that could wait and focussed on taking the vacation I deserved.
I met with friends, went camping, and allowed myself to loosen up (ever so slightly). And tried my best to figure out many of the things in my personal life that I’ve been struggling to grasp.
While there, two of my most trustworthy friends (and apparently biggest fans) meet each other for the first time, and to my surprise, one of the first topics we fell on was my blog’s abrupt halt.
Upon some (rather aggressive) encouragement from these dear friends, I decided it was time to get back in the game and start writing again. Which is why I wrote (halfway through the month) a quick update on what you should do for the rest of October.
Because, hell. It’s something.
Hindsight is 20/20
Today I realize that boss made me feel incompetent because she, herself, was lacking in confidence, discipline, and industry knowledge. I now realize that it’s unsurprising I sucked at the things that I wasn’t hired or trained to do, and that it was unfair to ask me to me to be an expert of anything for $15 an hour.
I realized I drowned myself in my work to prove to myself I wasn’t an imposter, and that I’m not an imposter at all. The reason they were so excited and eager to have me is because I’m valuable and deserve it.
And, finally, that my personal life will likely never get less complicated, and, in fact, will likely only complicate more in the coming months and years. As my career progresses, it’s doubtful my days will get less hectic. But I’ve been learning to mitigate it and take care of myself. Writing is a part of that.
Thanks for listening.