On The Job – Stilling the Mind


Over the course of my life, people have suggested in kind, and not so kind ways, that I need to relax.  Had I ever tried meditation ? Did I know of this great yoga move that could instantly make me a Type B personality ?  Would I consider getting my energies checked to see if I was out of balance ? Had I ever given thought to taking up running long distances with a pack of hungry wolves at my heels while running barefoot over glass in order to embrace the adrenalin high that results in zen-like euphoria ?  I think somebody is trying to tell me something…

This week it was my employment counsellor at The Centre.  I’ve made use of The Centre’s employment services before and found it quite useful.  Never one to shirk the opportunity to use everything at my means to get what I want, I sussed them out again after graduation.  I also read tons of books on the “mature job seeker”, signed up for countless websites (and quite frankly I can’t remember to use 1/2 of them), have taken webinars on personal branding and have spoken to as many experts as I can about the best way to increase my chances of employment.  The counsellor, after two meetings, has come to the conclusion that I’m a bit intense.

Given that the wolf story is really not too far off from my current situation,  though that’s my Type A perspective, I really don’t understand where she might get this impression from.  Just because she says I’ve done more leg work in 2 1/2 months than she’s seen some people do in 9 ? Just because I have successfully booked 11 informational chats in two months ? Just because I have a list as long as my arm of jobs that I’ve applied to ? Just because I have endlessly edited and improved my resume and sent her three versions since our first meeting ? Really ? This seems like extreme behaviour ? To this I say bah. Humbug.  This is normal for me.

It could be that I’m taking my lack of employment VERY personally.  After all, who else is there to blame but the one on the business end of the resume ?  It could be that I’m having a difficult time accepting that most people have to job search for up to six months before having success.  After all, why can’t I do it in 3 ?  It could be that I’m very self-critical and not owning all the hard work I’ve put in to this process.  After all, I’m still seeing an unemployment counsellor which sort of illustrates my point.  It could be she might have a point too.  After all, I am the only me I’ll ever have and I need to live with me for a long time.

Right now I’m listening to a lovely CD called, “Gathering of Hope: Rejuvenate Naturally” by Dr. Lee  Bartel.  It has bird song and running water and I’m sure some subliminal messaging that will turn me in to an axe murdering zombie but we’ll hope that the goal is indeed to relax and recharge a tired mind.  This is as close as I can get to the meditation that my counsellor suggested I embrace.  To try to sit for a long period of time with no book, no art pad, no photos to edit – this is painful for me.  It is not relaxing for me.  It is very counter-ohm for me.

To still my mind requires more effort than I am willing to give right now. To still my mind would be a joy.  To still my mind would be freeing.  To still my mind would require herculean effort that I would rather put towards mastering the art of aperture control and drawing something zany that makes me smile.  To still my mind would require complete silence which never happens in my house.  There is always a dog or a kid or a husband or a phone call or a thought persistently nagging and niggling in my brain.  To still my mind would require pharmaceuticals and I’m afraid that is not an option.  Being me only works when I’m not actually a zombie.

So with everybody’s best intentions and offers of advice, I’ll do the best I can to still my mind.  Or at least reasonably manage the chaos within.  I will try to own my hard work and remember the wise words of the employment counsellor who assures me that employment is imminent.  I will continue with my job search in the systematic, organized way I do most things and recognize that I’m further ahead of the wolves than I think.  Being a Type A has its advantages and building a good zombie trap is probably on the list somewhere.  Stilling the mind, however, is not.


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