It’s Not Your Job

Yesterday was a good day. I’m waiting for some client work to come in, so I had time to work on a personal project and put in some quality time over at the About Writing Squared forum. Plus there was some sort of issue with one subscriber who couldn’t get in. Hopefully I cleared that up for her.

Plus Anne and I had an introductory call with the forum members where we chatted, talked about what they want and what they can live without, and got to know each other. It’s great to spend time bonding with other writers.

I got my website back to where I started. Not what I wanted, but at least it’s not in Flash Hell any longer. I’m back to a static, boring site. The difference is now I know where I’m going with it and I’m on it.

I’ve often said my best ideas come from you. Today is no exception. Gabriella said something on Wednesday (twice actually – sorry about the spam filter snafu, Gabriella) that resonated. She said a woman she’d interviewed for a job the woman was pitching said this about sticking her neck out: “I already didn’t have the job, and the worst that could have happened was that I continued to not have the job. Don’t be your own worst enemy and make something not happen because you’re scared.”

What a great perspective! I don’t know about you, but that’s a freeing statement. You can’t lose what you don’t have. Likewise, asking costs nothing.

It’s another case of the what-the-hell attitude – amplified.

Sometimes we need to lay off ourselves a bit. That’s why this woman’s attitude is so intelligent. She allows herself to try and to not get caught up in the fear of failing.

Where can you apply the “it’s not my job to lose” attitude?

How would things be different if you stopped being afraid and started doing instead?

When did you jump in with both feet? What was the result?

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  • Wendy September 30, 2011 at 12:41 pm

    Thanks to Gabrielle for sharing that quote from the interview. I like it a lot. Basically, it says that you walk out of the interview the same way you walked in (if you don't get the job). You don't change at all, except you may be a little disappointed for a bit.

    The world doesn't end, nor does the floor crumble from underneath you. It's just an opportunity to move on to the next one. Who knows the next one may be tons better than the previous one.

  • Wade Finnegan September 30, 2011 at 2:44 pm

    I'll piggy-back on Wendy's idea. There is opportunity everywhere. As a freelance writer you are going to miss more than you make, but one great client makes up for a lot of misses. You need to be a little stubborn and just keep asking until someone says yes.

  • Gabriella F. September 30, 2011 at 2:50 pm

    Thanks for the shoutout, Lori.

    I totally loved her quote–and it was a good reminder for life in general. I like Wendy and Wade's thoughts, too, especially the bald fact that we freelancers are going to miss more than we make.

    So true, yet we still keep plugging ourselves. We are a unique and tenacious breed, aren't we? Go us!

    OK, I may have lost my mind for a minute there. Carry on.

  • Jake P September 30, 2011 at 3:28 pm

    That is a great quote, a perfect corollary of my feelings when I made the decision to make the freelance leap way back when. There was no fate worse than another day in a job that was making me profoundly miserable.

  • Paula September 30, 2011 at 5:50 pm

    I love the quote, too.

    I landed all of my top clients by jumping in head first. A few people may have thought, "Who does she think she is? Why would those entertainment publications want a business writer located in the middle of nowhere?" I took a shot that they needed good writers who could focus on the business side of the industry an ignore the gossipy side of entertainment. I was right.

    [OMG – I'm so embarrassed. I just had a minor coughing fit during an interview and had to ask the guy to hold for a minute.]

  • Lori September 30, 2011 at 8:32 pm

    It sure takes the pressure off, doesn't it Wendy?

    Well said, Wade. I've sent queries out to everyone in publishing it seems. The ones who say yes make up for the ones who don't respond.

    Go us indeed! LOL Thanks for sharing her wisdom.

    Jake, I couldn't agree more. Having gone from loving my job to loathing it almost overnight (thank you, new boss), getting sacked was actually welcome. I've not been happier.

    Great perspective, Paula. You did what Gabriella's interview subject did – you created your own specialty. (And I'm sure the guy's ears are fine – we're all human!)

  • steve January 19, 2012 at 6:53 pm

    I often say there is no time like the present… If i come up with a story idea from a news item, from a dream, or it just pops in at times and burns…. till i write it, I will try to at least write a summary of the idea so its not forgotton.

    I dont fear failing as much as not getting started…

    Dont overthink, you just wont write.

    It kills creativity.