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    Tuesday
    Jan042011

    Working for the Man

    Well, in this case, the woman.

    I'm pretty lucky to have had some meetings/coaching sessions with one of our senior executives.  I recognize that it's a benefit that couldn't happen at a huge company...And I like her, and I think she's very bright.  These are good meetings.

    For our next coaching session, later this week, she asked me to come up with a list of ten things that I would want in an ideal job.  And she asked me to be specific.  "Don't just put that you like to be challenged," she said.  "If I ask you to scrub toilets on your hands and knees all day, that's challenging, but is that what you want?"  Good point!  And she also asked me to come up with ten things I absolutely would not want.  Thus - without further ado - I present you with my lists.

    Top Ten Things I Would Want

    1. I’m working with people I trust and respect, and who can positively challenge me professionally and creatively
    2. I have my own space – where I can have some music going softly, and maybe even open a window
    3. I’m not always in the office – there is a balance of being able to work at home and traveling, but a healthy balance
    4. I work for an organization that I believe in and support, something that is tied to helping people, positive change, things like that
    5. The hours are balanced and reasonable, but no one is a clock-watcher
    6. I have a reasonable (less than 45 minute) commute to work; the shorter, the better
    7. I’m about 50-50 on interacting with people and working on my own
    8. Something where I have a concrete output at least part of the time, something I can look at and see that I’ve done and feel accomplishment
    9. Training or mentoring people so that I can share information/experience
    10. Some sort of creativity is involved – whether in presenting things, creating documents, something like that

    Top Ten Things I Would Not Want

    1. Anything with eyeballs
    2. Ridiculous hours that dominate my life
    3. Low morale, surrounded by negative people
    4. Managing large groups of people
    5. Constantly working with other people, never having time/space to myself
    6. Physical labor – I’m not in shape
    7. Doing something I can’t take pride in
    8. Repetitive, repetitive, repetitive
    9. No growth or challenges
    10. Being micro-managed – yet also not having support

    That's what I have...We'll see what comes next.

    Sunday
    Jan022011

    Soup's On

    I am living life on the edge!  A week or two ago I saw this recipe online for African Chicken Peanut Stew.  I was intrigued...I mean, really, any recipe that calls for peanut butter is going to catch my eye.  And I figured - well, why not give it a whirl?

    I haven't made a soup in a long time - maybe a year or so.  I like doing it, though; actually, I really enjoy cooking, even though I don't do it nearly enough.  And with diabetes, high cholesterol and high blood pressure, let's face it: I really need to start taking better care of myself.  And making a big pot of stew, where I can freeze some for a quick dinner in the future, is one good way.

    But - chicken with peanuts and sweet potatoes?  I wasn't sure how this would go.  I figured that it would either be really good or really horrible.  Of course, since I'm a spice wimp, and since I can't stand the taste of cilantro, I left out the cayenne, black pepper and cilantro.  I know it says that the stew is supposed to be peppery, but well, not in my house it isn't.  And the results?  It's really tasty!

    I only had to simmer everything for an hour.  The most tedious part was chopping everything up, and even that wasn't too bad; I put on some good music and went to town.  Also, it's pretty good on the budget...Ginger is probably the most extravagant item in the recipe, and even that's not too expensive or hard to find.  The chicken has bone and skin, so it's easy to find for a good price.

    All in all: I recommend this as a nice warm winter meal that's easy to make and offers a nice change to the usual flavor combinations.  Go for it - and let me know how it turns out!

     

    Saturday
    Jan012011

    And So It Begins...

     

    It's the beginning of another year, and another blog vomiting thoughts out into the web world...Is it worth it? Do I have anything interesting to say? I guess we will find out. I don't have any specific goals for this at this point, other than to post at least once a week. Otherwise I'm hoping that by committing to write - not just to write, but also to share it with others - will help me go a little out of my comfort zone, maybe even nudge myself into growth.

    I'm inviting you to wander down this path with me, to see where we end up. It's always nice to have friends along for the ride, isn't it? And maybe I'll even make some new friends along the way.

    So what am I going to write about? I don't know yet. Maybe it'll just be random thoughts...or perhaps a review of a book I've just read. I might share some amazing new recipe that I made, or possibly a new song that I can't get out of my head. There could be a stray post about my political thoughts and leanings...but probably not, since I'm not very political. I could wax philosophical about the meaning of life and such...nah, probably not. I might even be brave enough to share some of my own poetry; we'll see.

    Whatever comes of this, I'm looking forward to starting down this road and seeing where we end up. In the meantime, I hope you enjoy this cute little snowman that I have on my cubicle wall at work, made out of those magnetic Bucky Balls.

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