So in this post, I want to talk a bit about the stresses of modern life, and a possible antidote.
I just lost my job of two years at Princeton University. It was a glorious opportunity, but it was not for me. There were certain skills that particular job required that I did not have. The skills that I do have and thrill in using, including playing with technology, media, consulting, training, graphic design, presenting, and other creative skills were not the ones that caused an issue. There were a lot of necessary skills related to short-term memory, intense and tight focus, methodical and diligent site testing, and political sensibility that I do not, and may not ever own. In the end, it comes down to a misunderstanding on my part about what the job was going to be, and despite that misunderstanding, a need for that job to be done and done well in the way that they wished. Writing styles, working styles, and other stylistic differences also contributed. I wish them very well and continued success, and they did the same to me.
So, what to do now?
One of the things that had happened more often than I would have liked is having to turn down consulting work. An endless schedule of a nine-to-five job often eclipses the flexibility needed to succeed in consulting work. One of the outcomes of this change is that I am very free to pursue consulting work now. If you are interested in following my effort there, please visit https://www.facebook.com/lemasneyconsulting
Another thing that has become quite clear is that I do not need, nor want all the stuff that I have acquired. In my separation and later divorce, moving from a single home to a studio apartment, two cars to one, alcoholism to sobriety, obesity to fitness, and lots of money to very little, I have learned many things, but chief among them is that more is not better. In fact, to the contrary, losing all of those things has been a struggle in change, but a relief in the gloriously simple result.
I have also gone deeper into my embrace of nutrition via simplification and minimalism. One of my favorite things now is to grab 2 or 3 fresh whole vegetables from the fridge, like potato, tomato, and broccoli, and gathering it together into a delicious, simply prepared, subtle beauty of a meal. I have recently closed off my television service. I have stopped voluntarily going out to eat at restaurants. I have increasingly moved towards a whole-foods and local-seasonal nutritional lifestyle, going so far as to throw out my Splenda tonight, and realize with certain joy that I’ve drunk only a variety of loose leaf teas over the last week or so.
This is leading somewhere. I’m developing a new budget that eradicates my credit debt, maintains my living space, supports my family, maintains my auto insurance, and allows me to eat. Eventually, I’d like to get rid of my car and rely more strongly on walking, biking, and public transit. As a final goal, I’d like to own a very small plot of land (40’x40′?), with a tiny structure (20’x20′) to eat, sleep, meditate, play, think, and work. The world will be my yard.
Crazy? I’m pretty sure I’m not. <3 Passionate? Yeah, that’s me.
- John LeMasney speaks to the SLA/PT about Branding in Libraries. ()
- Princeton ArtWalk is Happening Thursday! (walkableprinceton.wordpress.com)
- 7 Tips for Decorating Studio Apartments (reallysmarthome.com)
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