I’m about a month and a week back in the full time logistics world.
Checking my previous entries, seems like I took a dramatic dive for the familiar, doesn’t it? It’s different this time, though. The type of work I’m doing now isn’t much different. The pay, hours, and benefits, about the same…but I’ve changed. I’m surprised how much growing up I’ve done.
Nearly two months ago, I’d decided I’d had my fill of free time devoted to my “art”. I’d already produced one book, and I was blocked on what has now spun off into two separate follow-up manuscripts. My ambitions to move out and live life were starting to write cheques that my financial situation of the time literally couldn’t cash.
And despite having all the time in the world to write, the kind of thing I dreamed about once upon time when I was miserable behind a desk from 9 to 5, I wasn’t getting anything done.
I’d decided it was time to advance. So I did. Within three weeks, I’d landed another full time job. There’s a fair bit of overtime each day. It’s challenging and stressful but also a little fun, and it’s in the industry (logistics and transportation) where I first cut my teeth in the working world, so it carries a certain satisfaction.
And I’ve written more in this past month than I have in the previous six.
My theory was simple: embrace all the things I used to bitch and complain about as being obstacles to my writing….and harness them. Kind of like aikido for your life: use your enemy’s movements and energy against him. In this case, it’s the 9 to 5 grind working for someone else, and constraints on my time. So far, I’ve been proven right on both.
This job is good, and I want to keep it. In fact, I work pretty damn hard to make sure I don’t lose it during these tenuous probation times. I take nothing for granted. But it’s still non-writing work, so every now and then, I’ll have a day where, just as a few years ago, I stop and ask myself “what am I doing with my life?”
Then I remember: “I wrote a novel. And I need to sell that novel.” I couldn’t say that five years ago.
Most of “Convergence” got written while I was working full time. Somehow, when my time was scarce, I got the inspiration more often. When I was setting aside time to write because I had no choice, I actually wrote.
And though the anxiety about getting in trouble at work is always running in the background, every time I feel it, I re-focus on my writing. One such stressed out day resulted in my booking my first public author signing event at Indigo Milton on Saturday, June 29th around noon. Others saw me journalling passages for one of the new manuscripts that don’t have a context….yet.
And, on top of that, I’m living now.
Subtle changes happen from full time work. You become task-oriented: get this done, get that done. It becomes a mindset, one that we then complain about not being able to shake when we’re in situations that call for being more in the moment (i.e. the cottage, vacation, even just as home chillin’).
And yet, you can easily apply that “get er done!” mindset to your own passions,
and it’s not as much of a stretch. Let’s face it: most of us are lazy asses prone to remaining at rest, and that’s what happened to me when I had too much idle time. Now I take that mindset and I’m getting my own things done. It’s that simple.
I have new words on the page, I have the money and functionality to invest in selling the words I’ve already written in “Convergence”, I can pay my debts, save up for my first own place in nearly three years, and, well, live right now rather than for some hypothetical point in an uncertain future.
We’ll see where this goes. I take nothing for granted, but I’d like to say that I hope to make probation and still be employed for the long run at this company so I can do what I must.
I think back to the times in my mid-twenties when I spent so much time looking for full-time jobs only to be disappointed, so unhappy, so desirous to have my time and all the luxuries of life without major sacrifice.
Now that I’ve had my time, I’ve come full circle, and now I’m going to use the things I hated to power the actions I need to take to get the life I’d love to have. And I’m being a responsible adult to boot.
I think that deserves some Grown-Up Gold Stars.