My Best Career Advice

matt-ragland-8OVDzMGB_kw-unsplash

This week is a huge step in my career. I am finally sitting for the first year of my certification class. I’ve been looking forward to and dreading this week for the past year. I don’t think I’ll ever feel ready for the exam at the end of this but I’m trying my hardest!

That might make it seem like I’ve got it all figured out career-wise. I can promise you that I don’t though. I’m still figuring everything out too.

I’ve recently accepted the intern mentoring position for my department so I’ve been thinking a lot about what I wish I had known as a college student preparing to enter the “real world” so I can pass this information to the interns that I will be mentoring.

The one thing I wish I had known when I graduated was that you don’t have to have everything figured out yet. 

I had no idea what I wanted to do when I graduated. I thought I wanted to go into marketing but here I am 4 years later still working in finance. You don’t have to have it all figured out. Apply for all of the jobs, do the interviews, and figure it out as you go. There’s no right answer and there’s no easy path. You just have to do what feels right.

You might end up not liking your first job out of college and that’s okay. It’s okay to take some time to figure out what you want to do. There are lessons to learn at every single job even if it’s not your “dream job”.

I never pictured myself working in finance but I took the leap and applied for the job. I didn’t expect to like it and I didn’t think I’d make it even one year. Four years later and I have learned so much. I am a subject matter expert, a leader, and a contributing member to a team of talented people.

We are all figuring it out as we go so don’t feel like you have to have a set plan. You’ve got this!

What’s the best career advice you’ve received?

Footer

Photo by Matt Ragland on Unsplash

Summer 2020 Bucket List

img_1749

Summer 2020 will go down as being the weirdest summer of our lives. A summer where graduation parties, weddings, and concerts were all cancelled. Life looks different right now but that doesn’t mean that we can’t still enjoy it!

Here are a few things that I will be doing during this weird summer.

  • Play badminton in our backyard
  • Walk local trails
  • Spend time at the lake with family while social distancing
  • Take a Michigan roadtrip with Brett for our anniversary
  • Make pasta sauce using veggies and herbs from our garden
  • Try a new restaurant for carry-out
  • Visit Lake Michigan
  • Host a social distancing cookout with a couple of friends
  • Take a day to do nothing
  • Do an outdoor house project
  • Send co-workers and friends cards in the mail
  • Have a picnic in the park

I’m actually really enjoying having a quiet summer for once! My husband is really involved in air shows so usually our summers consist of an airshow every weekend. It’s nice to be able to enjoy some time at home this summer!

What’s on your summer bucket list? Have you been able to make any plans?

Footer

 

Sunshine Blogger Award

Capture

A huge thank you to Becky for the Sunshine Blogger Award nomination! If you haven’t already, make sure you check out Becky’s blog!

Rules:

  • Thank the blogger who nominated you and provide a link back to their blog so that others can find them.
  • List the rules.
  • Answer the 11 questions the blogger asked you.
  • Nominate 11 bloggers for the award and ask them 11 new questions.

Becky’s Questions:

What’s your favorite outfit to wear?

  • My favorite outfit to wear is anything that’s super comfortable. I am a shorts and t-shirt kind of gal. I will for sure never be a fashion blogger!

If you could meet anyone from the past, who would it be and why?

  • This may sound crazy but I’d love to meet my great-grandparents. I’ve heard so many stories from my parents and grandparents but I don’t have any memories of them and I have questions that I’d love to ask.

What skill would you like to master?

  •  I would love to master hand lettering. I love watching videos of other people writing and I find it so peaceful. If I’m stressed at work I usually doodle something on a sticky note and feel much better. I think hand lettering is super cool but much harder than it looks!

What’s your favorite quote?

  • My current favorite quote is “I still remember the days I prayed for the things I have now.” As a teenager I just wanted a partner. I craved the stability of having a set person that I could always rely on. I wanted a husband, a house, a dog, all of that. It’s not that I can’t be an independent woman, I just really wanted a stable, lasting relationship and this quote comes to mind so often when I think about my life right now.

What movie can you watch over and over without ever getting tired of?

  • I could watch any of the Harry Potter movies a million times and never get sick of them!

What “old person” things do you do?

  • So many! I really love staying in on a Friday night to read a book on the couch even when everyone my age is going out.

If someone narrated your life, who would you want to be the narrator?

  • This is a hard one! I think I’d pick Emma Stone. She’s funny and reminds me of my sister.

What artist or band do you always recommend when someone asks for a music recommendation?

  • Green Day has, and forever will be, my favorite band. I also love Tom Petty!

What’s one song that you can’t stand hearing?

  • My least favorite/hated song is “It Wasn’t Me” by Shaggy. I don’t like it at all and will turn off the radio if it ever comes on.

What do you do for fun?

  • Recently my favorite thing to do for fun is to play badminton in our backyard! I also love reading, walking my dog, and watching YouTube.

What’s your second favorite color?

  • My second favorite color is probably a light blue. I also really love grey but that’s too boring!

My Questions

  1. What’s the story behind your blog title?
  2. Where would you live if you could live anywhere?
  3. What’s your dream job?
  4. Why did you start blogging?
  5. What’s your favorite thing to do in your free time?
  6. What’s your all time favorite book?
  7. What are three things that you can’t live without?
  8. What’s your favorite meal?
  9. What book/TV/movie character do you relate to most? Why?
  10. What quote do you live by?
  11. What’s the best thing that you’ve learned this year?

My Nominations

(That’s close enough to 11)

Thanks again to Becky for the nomination!

Footer

Migraine Update // Muscle Relaxers & Anxiety

jesse-orrico-rmWtVQN5RzU-unsplash

Last month I went to my Neurologist appointment not really knowing what to expect. I wanted something to change but I wasn’t sure what to do.

It was extremely weird going into the appointment since I had to fill out extra forms and be temperature checked at the door. I wore my mask the whole time and felt safe but it was a much different environment than I’m used to.

Overall the appointment was really good. I do like my Neurologist and feel like he listens to my concerns and answers my list of questions that I always bring with me. He isn’t pushy and I really appreciate that since I had such a bad experience with my previous Neurologist.

We decided to take a bit of a different route this time around and try a muscle relaxer in addition to my normal preventative medication. The muscle relaxer is supposed to help relieve tension and can be especially helpful for people suffering from tension headaches. I had never considered taking a muscle relaxer for my migraines but my Neurologist was really informative and I decided to try them.

It’s been about a month and I have mixed feelings. I sleep so well when I take the muscle relaxer at night but I almost sleep too well. I feel like I’m in a coma and just pass out and then have a hard time waking up with my alarm. I also feel pretty groggy the next morning which isn’t great for working.

Lack of sleep is a huge trigger for my migraines though so sleeping this well is also great. I get more sleep than I used to when I take them. I haven’t really noticed a decrease in migraines but I think it is a little helpful to take the muscle relaxer.

I’ve also had an increase in anxiety over the last month. I have a small tremor in my hands that I take medicine for. I was so stressed out and anxious last week that my small tremor turned into a full blown episode where I was shaking so bad I couldn’t hold a drink. My mom thinks this was brought on by stress and I took a video to show my Neurologist at my next appointment.

Since my increased tremor last week, which thankfully lessened after a few hours of rest, I have been trying to take it super easy. My body obviously isn’t responding well to stress and I need to keep that in mind and stop pushing myself so hard.

I also had a level 10 migraine last weekend. I haven’t had one that bad in so long and I barely made the car ride home from my sister in law’s house. I laid on the bathroom floor for awhile before Brett helped me to bed. I think the trigger was a small glass of wine that my SIL gave me. I know I shouldn’t drink wine but I thought it wouldn’t hurt me that much.

I have a lot of notes for my next Neurologist appointment but I still feel hopeful. I have the option to do the Amiovig injections so that might just be my next path.

There’s a lot of trial and error when it comes to finding the right treatment plan for migraines. I try to open to trying new things and I just remain hopeful that one day something will work!

As always, if you are suffering from migraines just know that you are not alone. There are millions of people suffering in America alone and I’m just trying to share my story and advocate.

Thanks for reading!

Footer

Photo by jesse orrico on Unsplash

Long Distance Sisterhood

MT1A00994

My sister and I are only 20 months apart so I don’t remember a time before she was born. She’s always been my built-in best friend.

Growing up our bedrooms were right next to each other and we shared a bathroom with only one sink. We have our fights and disagreements but at the end of the day, she understands me better than pretty much anyone else.

I never really thought about her moving away. I guess I just thought that we would live in the same place together forever.

And then a couple of years ago she met this guy in the Navy who she would end up marrying. It changed our family and I thought that I’d be upset about it but I’m not. I love watching her be happy.

She has now lived in New York, Hawaii, and New Hampshire. I have had the opportunity to travel to new places to visit her on a few different occasions. It’s hard being apart and I always hate when she leaves after a visit but I know she’s happy and that makes the distance worth it.

When she first decided to move with him I was worried that I wouldn’t be there if she needed me. I wouldn’t be a 20 minute drive away if there was an emergency. It’s been hard to let her go but I know that her husband is taking care of her. I also know that she’s a strong, independent woman and she doesn’t need her big sis to bail her out.

Long distance sisterhood has been hard. It’s taught me that I need to have more friends than just my sister. It’s also taught me that it’s okay to set boundaries with family.

We didn’t have the hardest childhood but we had our challenges that we got through them together. Adulthood presents another set of challenges and even though we aren’t together geographically anymore I know that we will still get through it together.

Do you have any siblings? How do you handle growing apart as you get older?

Footer

 

Re-Evaluating My Priorities

adeolu-eletu-E7RLgUjjazc-unsplash

Confession: I’m a workaholic. If I’m not working I’m thinking about work and if I’m thinking about work I’m feeling anxious.

My company is really big on work-life balance but it’s SO hard. They want us to feel like we can take vacation time, have flexible schedules, and come and go as needed and I really appreciate that.

At the same time, my department is always changing and growing which makes it hard to have coverage when I need it. My work has to get done on time so it can’t just wait until I get back.

I’ve mentioned before that I’m only 26 but have been working a paid job consistently for almost 10 years. That 10 years has been split between 2 companies, 6 years at one and nearly 4 years at the other. I am a hard worker and I like to stay at a job for as long as I can given that there are opportunities to advance.

My dedication to work has caused a big issue in my life though. Work quickly became my #1 priority and I’m having a hard time shaking that mentality.

My current dilemma is that I am senior in my department and potentially up for a promotion or two. As amazing as that is, I honestly don’t know what I want to do with my life and the thought of a promotion makes me question everything. Can I handle this new set of responsibilities?

All I know right now is that it’s time for me to re-evaluate my priorities. I don’t want to look back in 10 more years and only be able to say that I worked really hard. I want to remember times with Brett and our future family. I’d really like to find a balance before having kids.

How do you manage work-life balance?

Footer

Photo by Adeolu Eletu on Unsplash

Five on Friday #22

sincerely-media-b8wztr4H4xU-unsplash

Happy Friday, friends!

This week was a bit of a cluster for me but I’m trying to just enjoy everything right now. I am so glad that Tax season is over though. How was your week?

  1. My sister is in town for a few more days visiting from New Hampshire. I am so happy to have her here even if it’s just for a short visit. We don’t get to see each other all that often anymore so I really value all of the time I get with her.
  2. I have been loving the TULA Acne Clearing + Tone Correcting Gel lately! I bought it in a FabFitFun sale because I had heard good reviews and I was looking for an alternative for the Murad Acne Clarifying Solution. I love the Murad product but I ran out and was ready to try something new. This is my first TULA product and I’m actually really impressed! Have you tried any new skincare products recently?
  3. I’m taking a certification class the last week of July. It’s a three year program and this is my first year so I’m still super nervous. My class supplies arrived yesterday so I’m going to start to get everything organized and ready. I feel like I’m back in college again!
  4. I used to have an Instagram for my blog but when I quit blogging I switched to just having a personal Instagram. I’m thinking about starting to use my blog Instagram again. Do you have both a blog and a personal Instagram?
  5. Speaking of my sister, we recently discovered Beanitos Hint of Lime tortilla chips and they are so good! We both love the regular lime tortilla chips but these are way more flavorful. Super random but delicious!

My dad’s birthday is on Sunday so we will be celebrating with him. I don’t really have any other weekend plans though. I really want to get some sleep because I’ve been super tired this week.

What are your plans for this weekend?

Footer

Photo by Sincerely Media on Unsplash

It’s Okay to Take a Break

harry-sandhu-FpYoDqGGI4A-unsplash

4 years ago I quit blogging. I was a senior in college and the pressure felt overwhelming. I had been blogging for 3 years and nothing really came from it so I closed up shop and moved on with my life. I never forgot about blogging and constantly had the urge to write but I didn’t think I’d ever be here posting again.

I eventually forced myself out of blogging “retirement” because I needed a creative outlet. I realized that I was blogging for me, not for anyone else. It didn’t matter about stats or staying committed to my blogging schedule. All that mattered was that I enjoyed it.

The majority of us are maintaining a blog while holding down a full-time job. Blogging is a commitment but it’s also okay to take a break when you need it. I have found that stepping away from my blog and actually missing it gives me the inspiration to keep writing.

The urge to quit blogging still hits me every once in awhile when I have zero inspiration to write and feel like a complete failure. I want to give up when my life is too busy and putting my thoughts on the internet just makes me feel silly.

I’ve learned from being a “retired blogger” that it’s okay to take a break. Take a week, a month, or a year to gather your thoughts. Take some time for yourself and when you are ready to return your readers will still be here.

Have you ever quit or thought about quitting blogging?

Footer

Photo by Harry Sandhu on Unsplash

2020: Third Quarter Goals

gabrielle-henderson-T0d3UdwPkr0-unsplash

Every time when I go to write a new set of quarterly goals I am blown away by how fast time goes by. It’s already the third quarter of 2020 and I feel like the year just started. This year has not gone at all the way I pictured. 2020 started with a huge transition at work, then a global pandemic, and now another transition at work. All in all, not my favorite year.

One thing hasn’t changed though. I still love writing my quarterly goals. So without further ado, here are my goals for the third quarter of 2020.

  1. Monthly date night. As things start to open back up and return to “normal” I want to continue to prioritize time with Brett. Having a weekly date night has been great but I’m not sure if that’s as feasible with our normal schedules. Making the time at least once a month to have a date night will make our relationship so much stronger.
  2. Spend at least 30 minutes outside per day. I know this was a goal last quarter but I loved it! With the weather still being nice I want to make sure that I continue spending time outside. This has been really good for my mental health.
  3. Start meal planning again. Staying at home all the time has it’s perks but I have basically stopped meal planning. I’m able to grab what I want whenever I want since I don’t have to worry about packing a lunch for work. I want to start being more intentional with what I’m eating.
  4. Find a new outlet for my anxiety. I’ve had anxiety for a long time and I’m always looking for new ways to channel my anxiety. I’ve been feeling really anxious for the past couple of weeks and I know I need to find an outlet for this anxiety.
  5. Write down some professional goals. I feel like I talk about work a lot which is probably because I spend so much time working these days. My career is at a weird point where I’m pretty senior in my department and I have some new opportunities. I want to spend some time thinking about what my short-term and long-term career goals are and what I need to do to accomplish them.

Here’s to hoping that Q3 of 2020 is the best one yet!

Do you have any quarterly goals?

Footer

Photo by Gabrielle Henderson on Unsplash

 

July Blog Schedule

img_1644

July is a super busy month for me and I think blogging will have to take more of a backseat in my life for awhile. I’ll still be reading but I don’t know how much time I’ll have to create content.

Brett and I flew into Maine on Monday to see my sister in New Hampshire. On Tuesday we drove from New Hampshire to Michigan. On Wednesday we got her settled in Michigan and today I returned to work after 6 days off. I am exhausted.

Work has been rough this year. When I originally started writing this post I wrote that things were finally starting to look up. I spoke too soon. I don’t want to go into details because I know I am extremely lucky to have a job right now. I’m feeling really burnt out and I can’t imagine doing this for the rest of my life but I have no idea what else I’d want to do. I’m just feeling very unsure about work at the moment.

Speaking of work, I am taking a class for work the last week of July. I started a 3 year designation course which is usually held at Notre Dame. This year it will be online and I have been studying hard but still feel really unprepared. I will be spending most of the rest of this month studying and preparing for the class and the exam.

My anxiety is really high right now as I figure out how to deal with all of the things that are going on in my life. I’m nervous for all of the changes that are taking place at work and I’m extremely anxious about my class/exam.

Hopefully I will be back in action in August but July will most likely be pretty quiet.

Do you have any plans in July?

Footer