Advice on Going from Survival to Success for the "Instant Generation."



Day 73: I Quit More Often Than I Realize


Sometimes, I wish I could just forget statistics…

Last night was a difficult evening. I didn’t get something I really wanted. I also thought it was something that was a “slam dunk.” Logically, I know God is in control and that He is absolutely and always good. As long as I kept myself busy with activity, I did well; held on to the truth I know and believe. But, as soon as the action stopped that “chatterbox” full of lies started attacking me. What makes it hard is that it isn’t just the simple verbal garbage I have heard throughout my life–it’s researched backed statistics. When I start to think of those statistics I wonder, why bother? See it’s research, statistics, and thoughts like these that make me give up. On most things, it’s for a short time, but other goals and dreams have faded and died because of this process. So, this morning to fight another temptation to give up I started writing a goals list:

Goals List

  1. Get a new job in Boston

Why: I love Nick, and I know that God has more for us, and being separated by 6+ hours of a public transit commute works for now–but will not work on a permanent basis; Boston is more accessible and has a much more lively, active disability community. I need a job where I am not just scraping by to survive and where I am actually treated with respect and dignity.

Steps: 1. keep applying, 2. keep reaching out to my network, 3. keep my head up, 4. cold emailing, 5. Don’t QUIT

2. Get Certified in American Sign Language

Why: I learned Sign Language at the School for children with disabilities that I went to when I was little. I stopped using sign language when I went to Public School but when my dad got re-married my stepmother reintroduced Sign Language. I loved it all over again. Knowing sign language well enough to be an interpreter will give me more of an in with a part of the disability community that I care about. I also see this as a way to possibly serve in churches to make them accessible to the deaf and hard of hearing. Also, won’t lie, I could totally use the extra income of a certified interpreter.

Steps 1. wake up early enough to spend 45 minutes in the morning practicing my sign language, 2. when I have practiced enough find groups on Long Island where I can practice my skills 3. Practice, Practice, Practice 4. DON’T QUIT 5. Take Certification exam

3. Gym (Health)

Why: Mainly because it makes me feel good! I like going to the gym it gives me a natural endorphin rush that really makes me feel good. For the first time in my life, I don’t look at myself with disgust when I put my clothes on. I also need to go. Strength training makes walking easier and less painful for me. Also, I work for a health company part-time, if I am not taking care of my health how will that reflect on the company itself?!

Steps 1. reset my alarm clock that is across the room so that when my medication reminder goes off in the morning, I don’t just take my medicine and go back to sleep but I actually get up! 2. go to the gym first thing in the morning for strength training, 3. keep eating the right food and using my Melelucca products, 4. go to the gym after work for endurance training, 5. Don’t Quit!

4. Melaleuca

Why: Because I can’t live this existence anymore. I have worked so hard in my life and none of it is paying off at all. My Degrees are simply tokens that have lead me into an enormous amout of debt. I do not want to enter any future relationship dragging my debt with me, as much as people laugh at me I refuse to be another American in a large amount of debt living paycheck to paycheck having anxiety everytime I get hit with the “unforseen.” The “unforseen” happens a lot more often than anyone cares to admit; I’ve come to see.

Steps 1. Don’t Quit–I was considering this recently. 2. Don’t be attached to outcomes 3. talk to more people 4. be more intentional 5. Master Social Media Marketing (SMM)

5. Blog–SMM

Why: Because I love writing, I have a story to tell. I don’t think I have the right to tell it until I have moved past this survival mode but in the meantime I can write about how to keep you hope, confidence and motivation intact so that even though you feel like you are going three steps foward and two and a half steps back–you can stay focused on that half step foward. Bloging ang SMM is the way to be heard in this increasingly noisy world–I have to be heard in order to be seen for my value.

Steps: 1. read the materials I have on blogging and SMM, set up a weekly schedule for posting across the diffrent platforms, 3. stay consistant. 4. Don’t Quit!

6. Do well at my current job

Why: It’s where God has placed me right now. I am not working to please people but I am working as unto the One who created me. I am to do my best to maintain my work eithic and contribute whatever I can to the agency. When I am given the opportunity to move up, I want to leave them with a good flavor in their mouth.

Steps: 1. Be early, 2. return from lunch on time, 3. finish data entry in a reasoanle time frame, 4. take a grant writing course, 5 re-start the agency newsletter, 6 volunteer to help where/when possible. 7. Come in early enough or stay a bit late to clean out organize desk, 8. Don’t Quit–till it’s time.

7. Driver’s License

Why: Even when I do get to an accessible city it will still be good to have access to a car, that way we are never stuck anywhere. I can travel to non-transit cities and not be dependent on figuring out who is going to be around in order to plan everything.

Steps: 1. reschedule my lessons, 2. check with my brother and see if he will let me practice with him (he has an adapted car and this will give me more practice, 3. Simulations? 4. Don’t get anxious about finances 5. Don’t Quit!!! 


Maybe I Don’t Quit I just Restart–A lot!





Day 58: At it again and on “Do it Again”


Job Applications
Applying Again

If you remember back in January, I said I was taking the month off from applying to jobs because I was just getting so worn out and tired of the process. I was hearing nothing and getting nowhere. I had gone through developmental training, got help from a career counselor and had friends putting themselves out on the line for me and still getting nowhere. By the end of December I was so tired and to the point of tears. Everyone was telling me I was well qualified, my resumes and letters were well written. I was told nothing was wrong with me but that the job market was just scarce. I was reminded that there are people who graduated when I did and still were without any job so I needed to be thankful that I have a job. I will admit, although sometimes, things are not easy here I am grateful to have a job.

I ended up taking a break for a bit longer than the month. At the time, I thought it was the right thing to do. I had just moved into a new apartment, started taking driving lessons and thought that if I worked hard, I would prove my value to my job. I thought that if I showed my value to my job, I would be able to move up and continue to contribute to the agency. I am now fully convinced, in heart, in mind, and in spirit that things need to change.

My driving lessons are going well, but even if I managed to obtain a car, there is no way I could afford the insurance or gas. My job has made it clear to me that there is nowhere I can move within the organization. I can’t stay where I am. Too many days I go home feeling worthless and undervalued. So, my job search is back in full force; this time with Boston on the radar. While I was there I saw and heard about so many job opportunities that I lit up inside; in a way, I have not lit up in a long time. I have now filled out five applications in two weeks. My resume, with any luck and the help of God, may get into the hands of the CEO at one of the companies I applied to.


Melaleuca The Wellness Company: CONFIDENCE 

Meanwhile, while I have been searching for a new job my dreams have been getting bigger. Do you remember the Dream Board I made? Well, that accessible house, I want to give someone I love the ability to see their design plans for a universally designed home to come to fruition. I also want to start a fund that is set aside to help churches to meet financial needs so that they have no excuse not to be accessible and open to people with disabilities. I have been seriously considering giving up on Melaleuca, as a marketing director.

I love their products, they have worked for me, but I keep feeling like direct sales are just not for me. For some reason, I just can’t do this. My mentor (poor guy) called me last night. I was on my way to Physical Therapy, so I only texted him in return, but as I was walking home I was thinking: maybe I should just tell him I quit. Thankfully, I skyped with my boyfriend later that night. He is taking a bold step in his career aspirations and I am so proud of him. I realized that he already thinks I am amazing (Don’t ask me why; I couldn’t tell you!). But, I know worked at Melaleuca he would be so proud of me, and I would be able to meet my financial goals and dreams. After talking to him, I decided not to tell my mentor I was quitting. On top of that, this morning I heard a video about confidence from Steven Furtick called “Do it Again.” I am not giving up.








Day 6: Driving Evaluation, Timing and Fighting Discouragement

Yesterday by 7:30 my body was rendered useless. My aunt was an angel and wrapped me up in an electric blanket, that actually provided enough relief that I only woke up twice during the night from pain. Grateful for bits of relief. Before my body was rendered useless a few things happened.

First, I was contacted back by both places where I had a possibility of employment. One ended up telling me, they wanted someone with more experience in the corporate sector. I understood but was still discouraged. They try to make you feel better by telling you they will hold on to your resume for “future openings.” I have to tell you, that doesn’t ease the pang of rejection much. The other position was for a non-profit, but the pay being offered is less than what I am making now and it is in a city I don’t really want to go to unless the opportunity being offered is the opportunity of a lifetime. Being that I rejected that one, I was surprised at the discouragement that crept in then.

I have never been very good at pushing through discouragement. But, this time, I got over it rather quickly. I know that my current situation is not ideal but I know that God is working through it. For example, I have a great small group with people that love me and love each other in a way that blows me out of the water. I haven’t had that for at least a year and a half prior to moving back to home; and I searched desperately. One of the women from my small group is facing such a difficult time right now because her precious son is facing another medical issue. This young teenager has faced medical issues that would discourage any adult. Yet, him and his mother fight through it all with a strength I will never comprehend. When I got discouraged about my job situation and search I just thought of them, prayed for them and got over myself real quick.

Second, I got an invite to attend an alumni night at the first college I ever attended. I have to tell you, it was God’s timing because I was planning to take off the week earlier from work. What I was planning to do that week and while I was away was not only against my better judgment but against a fundamental aspect of my faith. Even though I know that what I was planning to do was wrong on so many levels I still tried to justify it in my head. Thankfully, between a conversation I had with my sister in law this weekend, and this alumni event occurring the following week I am not going through with my original plan.

Lastly, I DROVE A CAR!!! Seriously, I drove a car. I had my driving evaluation done by the adaptive driving school here. It turns out that I can drive a care without any adaptive equipment. So, I was terrified, as I have never been behind the wheel of a car, I have even been terrified to start a car when people have asked me to. When the instructor told me I was switching to the driver’s seat I looked at him like he had 10 heads (maybe more), slowly slipped out and prayed to God I wouldn’t kill anyone as I drove. I think I will be praying that prayer as long as I drive. I drove both with and without hand controls. The instructor decided I had enough muscle control, strength and reaction time to drive without hand controls. This scares me, however, it wouldn’t be the first time I have doubted my own abilities.

Day 2: Driving and Prioritizing

I currently live in a suburban area. It’s beautiful, but, I hate it. I don’t drive so getting around can be a pain. For years, I was not allowed to drive because of a medical condition. Not to mention, that the agency that was supposed to help me become independent and meet financial needs kept; “losing” my case or flat out denying me for services for one reason or another.

Well, about a month ago, since I was now more than a year without medical complications, I decided to re-file my case with the vocational rehabilitation office here. At first they were set to deny me again. Then, I laid out the facts for them. I have been offered several jobs here that I had to turn down because I do not have dependable transportation. The jobs that I have been offered have been in my field and offering me 0ver $20,000.00 more a year. After hearing those facts I was granted my request to get adaptive driving lessons and any adaptive equipment that I will need to drive safely. I was told to get my Learner’s Permit and then call my vocational counselor when that was obtained.

At the end of last week, I called my counselor; letting him know I obtained my learner’s permit. From our conversation at that time I could tell he had forgotten about our meeting. He stated listing the impossible stipulations that had led to a denial of services in the past. I tried to jog his memory of our meeting, but he was not having it. He said he would call me Friday of that week or Monday. He didn’t. So I called yesterday. This morning, he got back to me letting me know I was approved for services. (The persistently squeaky wheel gets the grease.

Last night, however, I had a conversation with a mentor I have had since 2012. He reminded me that if a good paying job became available in city with good transportation I needed to go and that I would have to work on getting the license later.  I agree with him, but is it wrong that I am hoping enough time passes between a job offer so that I can finally know the independence that comes with being able to drive?

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