Thursday, August 03, 2006

Balancing Act

"We do ourselves a great disservice by judging where we are in comparison to some final destination. This is one of the pains of aspiring to become something: the stage of development we are in is always seen against the imagined landscape of what we are striving for. So where we are- though closer all the time- is never quite enough. "
-Mark Nepo, The Book of Awakening

At each interview, I try a new life on for size. I look around the office and assess the vibe. I listen to the supervisors interviewing me- listening past the words to a feeling that taps right into my gut. Could I work here? Would this be a good match for me? Do they like me? Am I coming across as confident? Oh shit. They want me to role play a major gift ask? I've never done that. What's my motto? Oh right. Fake it 'til you make it. Gotta remember that.

Along with the dreaded strengths and weaknesses question, they always ask what my aspirations are. Sometimes the question is phrased as, "Where do you see yourself in five years?" or "What are your long range goals?" I tell them honestly knowing in the back of my mind that I could very well end up on a different path than the one intended. It's important to have that vision but to not get so wrapped up in it I can't see who I am in present tense.

I struggle with living in the now. My eye seems trained upon what will be instead of what is. This is a frustrating, hallow way to live.


I've been on thirteen interviews not including the three phone ones. Yesterday's interview lasted two hours. And they didn't have any formal questions- it was more like freestyle talking. I guess that's what you get at an arts organization. It was refreshing though I hoped they walked away with a good sense of my abilities. I feel like something has to give in the next couple of days. The final meeting with the Board member or an offer or a call back or something. I don't have any other interviews scheduled outside of these three possibilities I've been waiting on. All this interviewing and waiting is stretching me thin. I feel pulled taut like a high wire. I'm the wire and the walker. And I'm holding my breath that I make it across.

15 comments:

alissa said...

Any organization would be lucky to have you! Don't get discouraged, it's all part of the game.

Melissa said...

Think of this whole interviewing process as part of your training. It really does hone your skills at getting to the heart of a person in a few short questions and will benefit you later when approaching a patron for a substantial gift. It teaches you how to (in not quite a totally positive way) get the gist of someone and learn how to work them very quickly to get what you want.

Alison said...

You'll make it across.

Karl said...

I've said it before and I'll say it again. Anyone who doesn't hire you is a moron! Just tell them to call me and I'll tell them so myself!

sue said...

13 interviews and you aren't CRAZY yet? OMG... you poor thing! Hang in there, I'm keepin' everything crossed for ya!!

JustRun said...

That is an incredible amount of interviewing. I know it don't pay the rent but you should be proud of getting through all that!
Something is coming soon, I don't doubt it. :-)

Becky said...

I'm seeing an interviewing tips book in your near future. I really hope one of these works out for you. The Board one sounds very promising. I know what you mean about those stupid canned questions -- what does it really matter where I see myself in five years b/c I probably hope to have YOUR job, but I'm not going to tell you that now, am I?

Jenny said...

your weekly dose from ILM :)

I relinquish all attachment to my affirmations. My affirmations are not for manifestation but for expanding my possibility consciousness. I refrain from assuming that I know what it right or best. I want what is for the highest good more than I want what I think works for me. I trust that there is a greater wisdom and take comfort in this. I relax into the awareness that there is divine unfoldment. I let go of micromanaging G-d. I am teachable and desirous of being led and directed. I release particular expectations and move into a state of pure expectancy.

The dutch Sizz said...

Two years ago I also went throught this torture of intervieuws.
Just as I was about to give up I got myself a temp job.
It was supposed to be for just two weeks but I'm still there.
Still a temp ...but hey it's a job ...a good one..really.

Hmm i sound like a push over. Maybe it's time for the "hire me or I'm gone talk"

I'm sure you will find a job soon.
Hang in there Sizz

Mr_Rodacre said...

Once upon a time, the world's greatest tightrope walker challenged himself by walking a highwire over Niagra Falls. As crowds of people looked on, the man crossed high above the falls. When he reached the other side - to the crowd's amazement - he turned around and walked back over.

When he stepped off the highwire, he got a wheelbarrow and pushed it across along the highwire, carefully balanced. Once again safely on the other side, he turned to come back.

The crowds grew as the man then put his beloved dog in the wheelbarrow and once again crossed along the highwire and back.

He then had members of his family sit in the wheelbarrow and all day long the man carefully balanced the wheelbarrow across the thin highwire. The crowds grew in size and amazement at this feat.

Near the end of the day, the man could see his fans had grown and one fellow stood out to him as possibly his biggest fan, grinning ear to ear.

The performer asked the fellow, "Do you think I can cross this wire with the wheelbarrow one more time today?"

And the man excitedly said, "Yes! Yes I do believe you can do it!"

"Are you sure?"

"Absolutely! I've been watching you from the beginning! I have absolute faith that you can do it one more time!"

The performer said, "Good! Then get in the wheelbarrow! Let's go!"

The man turned white as a sheet, "Oh no, no, no, I couldn't possibly..."

"But you just said you believed I could do it? I wouldn't let you down!"

"Yes, well, I guess... I am afraid..."



---Many times we say we have faith - that God or our higher power will take care of us - but a lot of times we don't always BELIEVE it to be true. Have faith. Get in the wheelbarrow. Everything will be fine.

Rosie said...

oh, dear sizz....from one non-profiter to another -i sooooo hear you.

have you ever thought about higher ed development work? i ended up here out of desperation for a job and i actually like it. plus it pays MUCH better than traditional non-profit work....and its usually more well-run, with better resources and all that. but i totally get the "doing what you believe in" philosophy as well.

i've never had to role play a major gifts ask, but it sounds heinous!

Claire said...

I hate the 5 years from now question. I couldn't really say what I want right now for a job much less 5 years from now.

Hang tough!

Bre said...

I hate when people ask me for my strengths, I always feel like a snot when answering!

When it comes down to it, they'd be lucky to have you ... and if they don't see that then it's not the right fit!

Nihilistic said...

Where do you see yourself in five years....ugh that is such a stupid question to ask in an interview...it tells you nothing of the person or their job experience or abilities. Its dumb! DUMB I SAY!!!

Margaret said...

Frustrating ans stressful as it is, it's kinda cool to get to try on all these different possibilities: your perspective is amazing.