Physically, I feel pretty good and that has helped me maintain mentally. If it wasn’t for CrossFit and more so the good folks at CrossFitAC I can honestly say that 2015 I would not have been doing so well.
On October 13, 2015 I celebrated one year of CrossFit. One year of picking things up and putting them down. Doing things that I never ever dreamt of doing (what up bar muscle up?) with my body and pushing myself both mentally and physically.
I’ll tell on myself, I did chicken out of doing the Open in 2015 (a global competition–really against yourself) but that ain’t happening in 2016. There was zero reason not to do it. It’s nothing more than a baseline of my fitness.
A few key lessons from CrossFit: just show up, work hard and practice. Before long you will be doing things you just couldn’t have seen as possible. Practice is key. That means doing more than just the Work Out of the Day, but actually finding time to work on the movements you are not so good at.
And from Coach Dino, “Abs aren’t made in the gym, they’re made in the kitchen.” I’m still working on that one man. Love you guys.
I’m afraid to let go of my “brand.” However small that may be. The result, I think, is limited help.
How many people in my network know that I’m looking for my next career opportunity?
How many would be willing to help if I simply said, “Yo, this is where I need help.”
I’ve learned that after long periods of time I’m not who I want to be when the situation isn’t the way I want it to be. I’m trying to think of a better way to put this. Ah, maybe this is better,
I have a set of standards that I strive for. When my external conditions are not what I would like them to be…for an extended period of time, I notice I’m not as focused on those standards. The easy way that I’ve come to explain this to myself is Maslow’s Hierarchy of Needs.
I’ve learned to respect the process. I knew that at the beginning of my job search I couldn’t go out guns blazing asking for help because things would change overtime. I’ve been with Intel for 8 years in a role I didn’t necessarily want to jump into again and the last role I had there was awesome but also one you don’t see advertised by companies for external hires (just in case you know of a company hiring for Employee Advocacy, let a brother know).
So my job search was really a job journey. One that involved learning where my skills and experience matched the markets needs.
I had to learn to accept help even when I didn’t want to really listen to what was being said. I had to ask myself, “What’s true here?” in every message.
I’ve learned that there is a part of myself that I don’t fully own and express. A kind of boldness or turning up the volume that I want to jump into more in 2016. Hmm, sounds like a good place to list some of my beliefs:
- I believe you have a choice
- I believe if you don’t want to change the situation, say so, which frames the conversation and keep talking
- I believe I am dynamic
- I believe in creating based on the talent you have and not just what you think you need
- I believe in being a “whatever is needed kind of person.” Forget early bird or night owl
- I believe in sprinting
- I believe in motivation
- I believe in meaning
- I believe every speech should have a quote from a hip hop artist.
- I believe in energy
- I believe in being grateful.
A Few Shoutouts
There are a couple of shoutouts I would like to make. Not to exclude anyone but these are a few that come to mind right now.
Andre Blackman for always texting me after I put something on Facebook or Twitter with the following, “You alright bro?” You know come to think about it maybe it’s automated. LOL.
And also for being willing to trust me with his network when it comes to this job search thing. He has helped me get pass many a gatekeeper.
Desiree Adaway for sending me a message, “hey, do you have 15 minutes to talk in the next day or two?” When we get on the phone, “I don’t get it? What the hell are you doing on Facebook? I’m old and may not get it but what are you doing?”
Let me frame that with the conversation starts with, “You know I love you right?” That conversation with Desiree touched me so much because it’s a perfect example of, “They may hate me and never talk to me again, but I refuse to let my people show up as less than their best self.” I can only hope to be as brave and caring.
Pam Slim for taking me to everyone one of her community building tour stops across the country….virtually by sharing my No More Reasonable Doubt podcast story. She didn’t tell me she was gonna do it but the Twitterverse always let me know when it was happening.
Neil Licht, a local dude who has a very strong personality and even stronger heart. He is the guy who told me to stop wasting my time with gatekeeper and go for the hiring managers. He also told me, “DON’T STOP BEING MIKE.”
and I met a few years ago at a meet up in Worcester and he also was part of a meet up crew I put together in Shrewsbury. Thanks for believing in me when I was about to stop believing in myself.
Allison Myers, for your time and compassion Dr. Myers. If it wasn’t for Allison I would have given up on the No More Reasonable Doubt project. In fact there wouldn’t have been a project as she was the one who helped me with the research question to make sure this thing was actually going to be of value to the people.
Jenny, for your generosity. I don’t know where you find the time as the tech mogul that you are but I’m glad you made the time for me.
Jullien Gordon: I really can’t say enough about this guy. Every time I get on the phone with him is like sitting in on a Stanford Biz School class. And he is one of the most down to earth, caring dudes I know. This year we had a chance to meet up for breakfast and lunch while at ScholarCon in Orlando. Not only did we break bread but he listened deeply to where I was and provided feedback and made connections for me. Oh and he refused to let me pay for the bill.
You may not get it but Jullien is one of the main speakers at ScholarCon which means the audience wants his time and other speakers want his time as well. What he did was made space for us to spend about 2 hours (if not more) together in communion. That’s a big deal to me and the kind of thing I look forward to reciprocating.
Dyana Valentine: Gift of being seen and giving me words like “Watch me; Do You,” and being accepting of words that you have been fighting. My words are activists and servant.
There are more of you out there who have been so gracious to me in 2015. Thank you. Hopefully I have personally thanked you.
I felt like I had to get this off my chest to move forward in 2016 with the work I must do of finding work and letting my life serve as my greatest body of work.
Thanks for listening and reading. Now get out there and make something happen.
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