Well, I made it through the first week and I’m in to the weekend. The initial pain and shock wore off quite quickly. That probably has more to do with the fact that I am experienced enough to know that something fishy was happening in the company throughout the summer, despite not being able to put my finger on it. So, this is probably good that I am willing and able to move on as quickly as I am. However, in order to move on, I had to identify items that were holding me back. Again, I am no success coach or corporate executive. I just happen to be someone stuck in the trenches, and have found a few things that are helping me. They are keeping me motivated and encouraged. This is important if I’m going to be able to land a new position. If there is anyone in the same position that is reading this, and finds anything useful that helps and encourages them, then again it is all worth it. Again, don’t expect a well written blog post. I write code.
The hardest thing so far, has been the ability to sleep at night. It’s not so much the worry of everything that has been keeping me awake, but the memory of the incident that just keeps looping in my head and feeding my negative emotions. Sometimes it drives me to tears and makes me angry. I’ve discovered for myself that this is unhealthy and is holding me back. So, in order to move forward, I needed some healing. Thus, in order to heal myself, I needed to take care of that endless loop. Otherwise, I will be stuck and things will only get worse. Fortunately I had a trick up my sleeve to take care of this. In June, when all of these things were starting to happen, I had decided to go through my old Anthony Robbins Personal Power courses (been using them for almost 30 years). One of the things he covered in the course was what he referred to as the “erasure technique”. This is where you take those endless loops that are negatively affecting you, and perhaps holding you back, and start playing them in all sorts of ways that scramble the video in your head to the point where it is no longer recognizable. The source for the materials that were used to scramble this video we’re provided to me courtesy of my wife, Nichole, whose twisted sense of humour is something that I am truly grateful for. Before we went to go grocery shopping she decided to take me out to make me feel better, and get a clear game plan. So, blindly, I let her drive me to wherever we were going. Once we got close, she goes, “are you afraid yet?” I wasn’t sure what to think until we got into the parking lot. Once I saw that we were turning into the parking lot where Angel’s diner is where I figured we were going for some breakfast. When we parked the truck, she goes “we’re going to the Stag Shop.” Knowing that this is so unlike her, it made me laugh really hard. Honestly, he gave me a smile all through breakfast. Yes, we went to Angel’s diner. I’ll get to that below. However, for the purposes of my endless loop this was enough of a pattern interrupt to get me started. Immediately, I started playing the loop using material from the Stag Shop injected in. I started doing anything fun from placing French maid outfits on the HR personnel as well as my former boss, to leather teddies. Then it got really fun adding in the whips and chains. Whether anyone reading this is smiling or shocked, I don’t care. This work for me. I’ll play this image in church if I have to in order to keep grinning (it’s not a sin). For now, this might be one of the first nights I get a good night’s sleep since getting laid off.
Yes, Nichole myself went to Angel’s diner this morning. We’ve been thrown in a tough situation, and this was a little something to help us get moving. We had lots to do, and couldn’t let something like this stop us. We are human. This was a time for us to appreciate what we do have, and that was each other. Besides, it’s not like we spent an exorbitant amount of money. Both of us had the breakfast special, and that was more than good enough for me. It helped me to feel grateful for what we do have. And, if anything, I learned a long time ago that the key to happiness in moving forward is gratitude. Going to Angel’s diner helped me feel that gratitude. It was a little thing, but those little things are the big things.
I have to keep telling myself, “this is the weekend.” If anything, I have been sending out resumes and answering technical challenges. Now, don’t get me wrong. I actually enjoy the challenges because they prove to myself what I can do, alongside proving to others what I can do. They are helping me to think. If there’s anything that I love to do, that is think. However, this is the weekend. I’m allowed to rest. That’s what I did when I was working. That’s what others are doing, Looking for a new job is work. If anything, I’m proud of myself for the number of resumes that I sent out last week. I am prepared to do no less for the week coming up. However, I need to teach myself that resting is not something to be guilty of doing. When I was working, I would take the weekend and play some guitar and write some songs. I need to do the same now. In fact, I’m going to do a shameless plug to show you what I’m about when I’m not working. For me, the work life balance was very important, especially for the past four years. It should not change now, and I will not punish myself because of a situation I could not control. So without further ado, feel free to have a listen:
And, if it moves you to help support independent musicians, and you find that my music reaches out and touches you in some way, I would be greatly appreciative. I have never been one to ever asked for a simple hand out. I always like to give something back of value and these songs are more than just songs. They are stories of my life. In fact, one of the songs in this album documents was inspired by not only the mass layoffs happening at BlackBerry, but was also a twist on their campaign slogan at the time. And don’t worry, I don’t plan on living like a rock star. Anything that I have ever made from music was re-invested back into music, such as DAW upgrades and new drum libraries. If anything, however, I love the programming life as well as the music life. They help me to feel balanced, and I hope to get back into it very quickly.
As I have said previously, these are things that are helping me to move forward. For those in the same situation as me, and I know that I am not the only one, read beyond my words define the meaning of what is going to help you move forward. Here’s to a new week, filled with new hope and new possibilities.