Budding shoots

Busy packing boxes for the move into my new home next Friday. There’s mess all about me, and unfortunately more stuff than boxes to fit it in. I figure I’m down to the last 15%, and will be glad when it’s all done – and gladder still when I’m packed away in my new place. Much chaos between now and then, but so it goes.

So it goes is an apt description for my career also. When last I commented on it I was faced with a dilemma, since played out. The choice was between a short-term, but lucrative contract in Bendigo, doing what I know best; and opting to continue with the uninspiring and unrewarding security of a permanent job. Put like that it seems a no-brainer, but I would go sleep thinking on it, and would dream of it through the night.

A week later I can report it’s not happening. I spoke to my contact and discussed the role further, but ultimately it became too hard. I need a longer contract, but even if I managed such a thing with this role – a possibility – the commute to and from Bendigo daily for months on end seemed too much. We agreed to watch out for the next opportunity.

It’s not an outcome that satisfied me overmuch, and in the aftermath I made some decisions. Fact of the matter is that if I’m to get back to where I was there will almost certainly be some risk involved. I’ve always embraced risk, but it hasn’t always treated me so well. I’ve gone back into my shell somewhat, by necessity, needing to stabilise and consolidate and stop the free fall. I’ve not been scared off though, and common sense as much as burning desire tells me that I have to be brave. I have to reclaim something, for the good of my soul, and to secure some sort of retirement. It won’t fall into my lap. I must take a chance.

I’ve set parameters. Once I’m settled in my new home I’m willing to consider any role in my field that will produce a minimum of $25,000, or 3 months of work. That’s not really asking a lot. Once I’m in a role like that I’m back in business, meeting people, forming relationships, creating a network. It will happen.

As it happens I received an email during the week from a consulting firm asking me to the apply for a role of Senior Consultant. The role is a IT/Finance hybrid, hence their interest in me. That’s my sweet spot, but there aren’t many like me who have that plus consulting experience. I’m a sceptic, but I’ll apply all the same.

Then on Friday night I caught up with an old friend unexpectedly visiting from Mullumbimby. We went for a beer down a rainy Brunswick street before heading back to the apartment he had rented for the week with his wife. His brother was there to, a similarly lovely man, though quite different. We had met some years ago at my friend’s wedding, and hit it off – for reasons unknown he really took to me. In our conversation Friday he discovered I was looking for work, asked a few questions, then said there was a consulting role going at his job. He’d ask about it for me.

It would be a relatively modest role by past standards, but par excellence if compared to present circumstances. It’s a suburban practice with an application I know, but haven’t used for years. I think it was my Six Sigma that got him interested. Probably nothing will come of that either, and if it does it’ll be a challenge given I’m not supposed to drive – though challenges are there to be overcome.

There are dark moments and very tight fixes, but I’m generally optimistic that there are signs I will come out of this alive. I won’t go so far to say that it feels a bit like the Spring-time of my recent career, but there are definitely budding shoots to look forward to blossoming.

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