Mae & FrugalPatat's Journey

Where are you and where are you going?
Posts: 101
Joined: Wed Dec 27, 2017 3:44 am
Location: Belgium

Re: Mae & FrugalPatat's Journey

Post by Mae »

Job coaching part 1

So I had my first session on Monday and it took me nearly all week to process most of it, and the next one is around the corner :shock: The session was around 1h15 duration and we walked around a local park while we discussed the exercise. Normally, my coach tries to finish a whole life in 1 session but we didn't make it that far :lol: So I'm stuck at 18 y/o Mae until Monday.

I got a few labels: gifted, highly sensitive, creative generalist (as opposed to a specialist). I am not a big fan of labels but my coach told me that these are just tools to navigate through life, relationships, job environment, etc. I expect that we will do more with the labels in the next sessions.

She also already gave me a (dynamic) meditation exercise :lol: because I was explaining that all the suffering in the world and the egoistic or egocentric nature of humanity as a whole can have me feeling depressed sometimes. The exercise serves to ground myself and snap my thoughts out of that negative loop. It isn't usually part of the job coaching lol.

So one of the things that came up a lot, to her, was freedom. Freedom to choose hobbies, flexibility, etc. I can see why she noticed that, but I don't think it is something that I am actively striving for. Perhaps I should, to be happy. We'll see how the rest of the exercise goes.

Then 3 other things that were prominent: (1) creativity, (2) sports, (3) reading. I have basically always been doing some creative hobby, although not one of them stuck for a long time. I usually pursue things for 1-2 years or just occasionally.
Then the sports thing, she noticed - as I have before -, that I use sports or physical activity in general to calm my mind. (Re: the above racing, depressing thoughts lol) She thinks it is good that I figured this out and she encourages me to keep practicing some kind of sport.
And reading, well, I have been addicted to reading since I could and it hasn't stopped! It's the only thing that really stuck with me over the years, except for a couple of months after uni. (Currently reading Jane Austen - Persuasion and a biography of Simone de Beauvoir (Becoming Beauvoir), highly recommend.)

She also gave me a test for perfectionism that I have to fill out by Monday. I don't know if I will encourage her to focus on that, because she said it would be a different sort of coaching and I want to stick to job coaching. If anybody wants the questions for the perfectionism test, I am happy to share, but as they are all open questions and there are quite a lot of them, I will refrain from translating and posting them, unless somebody IS REALLY EAGER to do the test.

I was planning on posting about some other stuff too, but it took some time to type out all of the above and I feel a bit tired now. Not a lot of it was ERE-related anyway :D
Last edited by Mae on Mon Nov 23, 2020 4:51 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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Joined: Thu Aug 06, 2020 3:33 am

Re: Mae & FrugalPatat's Journey

Post by disk_poet »

@Mae: Thanks, I am feeling much better. It really sounds like this triggered a lot of thoughts. I always find introspection tiring so I can empathize. I had the same experience re work/friends and it gives me pause because the goal of ERE is to not work (or work very little in my case). Basically I looked at my list and realized how much of my social life was circumstantial but that doesn't work well if I actively pursue semi-ERE. I need to be more proactive or I will just become (more of) a weird hermit ;)

It's funny that you feel like the session was not ERE related whereas when I read it, it seems to check a lot of boxes. Just from browsing the forums it seems a lot of people here (might also be my confirmation bias, so please correct me if I am wrong) are striving to be generalists (the whole renaissance idea) and are individualistic. Freedom of choice and lifestyle also fit pretty well with ERE. So the way I would read your insights is that you seem to be on a path that aligns well with the values that you worked out so far. That in turn I'd see as something positive. You're actively working on aligning values and actions. Does that resonate with you at all?

Posts: 101
Joined: Wed Dec 27, 2017 3:44 am
Location: Belgium

Re: Mae & FrugalPatat's Journey

Post by Mae »

I'm happy you are feeling better today.

I still see a lot of my colleague-friends from previous jobs, so not all is lost. I also made a lot of friends through volunteering.

Yes, it resonates with me. I think I was looking at the job coaching in general, because I am dumping 60 euros per session into figuring out how to not get burnt out again and if I should switch fields and if yes, where to. I figured it would be worth the investment because my indecisiveness is strong(tm) the past months and the knowledge will serve me for quite some time. I agree that I am on a path that aligns with my values (and that this -being on a path that aligns with my values- is important to me an sich) but now I need to fill in the details :D

I have coaching tomorrow + an appointment with a temp agency and an appointment for a possible temporary, part-time job the day after. Also working on my sewing skills/project and tidying in general, now that I have the time. Immer vorwärts!

Posts: 101
Joined: Wed Dec 27, 2017 3:44 am
Location: Belgium

Re: Mae & FrugalPatat's Journey

Post by Mae »

Job coaching part 2

So today was my second session of job coaching and it was a fun one. I returned home full of energy. And I got 2 resources! For your typical renaissance person. The Ted talk describes me to a T. It was a bit uncanny. ... anguage=en

We went over the last part of my lifeline (19 - now (29)) and discussed some things like: of all the jobs I have had, which one did I like the most? She picked some things that I had emphasized, to discuss further, like hiking in the Scottish Highlands and working a student job as a barista.

I forgot to tell last time that she labeled me a 'loner' :lol: She asked if the label was appropriate lol. I said yes, and we didn't really discuss friendly relationships further. (I must clarify, though, that I have a couple more or less close friendships.)

So at the end of the exercise, she asked me to identify common threads. (This is something that the people who are reading here and doing the exercises can do as well.) She also asked me to pick one of the periods, to which I felt myself drawn to in that moment, and to explain why. Then she proceeded to share some thoughts about the way I live my life and said that I seemed to her an authentic person who is living along her values, and that I should not forget that this is not too common. "Some people don't even know their own values," she said.

Unfortunately it was almost time to conclude the session. She asked me that if I could do ANYTHING right now, regardless of fears or financial limits, what would it be. I told her I would go hiking in Scotland again, I wanted to start writing (anything) again and I would like to study philosophy. In hindsight, I think I could have thought bigger. Oh well.

We talked about how we could make the first two things happen (because I only added the last thing when we were really wrapping up). The first one was a bit hard, given covid. The second one, she asked me how I could make it happen?
I usually start and stop hobbies within a 2 year time span, except for a couple things like running, and I explained to her that, to keep going, I often entered a competition, to keep up the motivation and discipline. I do not do it for the competition per se, but more as a means to get shit done and keep getting it done - accountability. I always felt a little bit conflicted about it - why didn't I have the internal motivation to just keep doing things? - but she encouraged me to keep doing things this way as necessary.
So to return to the question how I could make it (it being: writing) happen? We concluded that it would be good if I asked some friends who were also aspiring writers to have regular meetings, in order to keep writing and making progress. (So umm, if anybody is up for that ... :lol: )

I also got my next exercise. It is quite a big one and I have three weeks to complete it. It has only been the second session but I will miss this weekly coaching already. Next one is on December 15 and seems far away.

Anyway, THE NEXT EXERCISE is one to identify talents with a side note included that we often take our talents for granted:
  • Step 1
Write your 5 biggest talents on a paper, as well as your (1) biggest point for improvement. Do this
before you advance to step 2.
  • Step 2
Ask at least 3 people who know you in another way (e.g.: 1 family member, 1 best friend, 1 colleague):
- What are my 5 biggest talents?
- What is my point for improvement (1!)?
Play the role of journalist. Don't send or interpret, but really listen to their story. What do they mean by a certain word? Why do they think that are your greatest talents? Can they perhaps give examples? ...
  • Step 3
(this one, I had to chuckle, you will see why ... :lol: )
Take this personality test and don't see it as a stamp, but as an inspiration. What do you recognize in the resulting text and what not?
Highlight about 10 qualities that you recognize for yourself, and about 5 that you do not recognize or recognizes less.

Have fun ;)

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Re: Mae & FrugalPatat's Journey

Post by ertyu »

hm while i see the reasoning behind interviewing others, i'm not sure i'd trust them to be objective. part of this is that looser acquaintances and even friends would probably lie to avoid conflict (those who are sincere are still very likely to be projecting*). With family members, I wouldn't trust them to not be self-serving. E.g. my mother would probably be very quick to tell you that my main area for improvement is that I am "too sensitive" (read: unwilling to accept dysfunctional family dynamics and not rock the boat).

(*) the projecting thing is actually quite interesting. I've always had an interest in psychology, which is what prompted the following. Years ago, a much younger (coughkindateenagecough)and more innocent ertyu belonged to a forum for fans of a certain singer. It became apparent that many of us were into this singer not just because of his music, but also because we saw him as a role model to emulate. We found his personality inspiring and admirable.

I befriended around 10 of these "more intense" fans, of which, full disclosure, I was one. One day I decided to ask them who they saw the singer to be, and what qualities of the singer they found most worthy of emulation.

Imagine my surprise: all ten or so of us were talking about the same celebrity, went off the same interviews, song lyrics, and public appearances, but we each saw his personality differently. What was most surprising to me was that the admirable qualities my friends saw in this singer, and the qualities they thought were most worthy of emulation, were actually qualities I thought described them! Basically, all of us had projected our best selves onto this celebrity.

tl;dr: rather than asking others about your possible blind spots, it might be much more fruitful to characterize a celebrity or other inspiring figure or role model for what you admire about them. Chances are, those would actually be a mixture of your values and your strongest qualities. And yes, I was a romantic emo-ish teen :lol:

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