Monday, June 14, 2010

The 5 Minute Pitch vs. The Little Voice Inside My Head

A few days ago I decided to stroll through a little bookstore in Harvard Square killing time before meeting some friends for din din. While there I decided to take a look at a career guide called The Idealist Guide to Nonprofit Careers for Sector Switchers. I got about halfway through the book while sitting there and plan to actually buy it sometime soon (sorry Harvard Coop since you are kind of "The Man"... I'm going to buy it at Trident instead). One thing that stuck with me is the idea of creating my own elevator pitch. While I know that this is not the world's most original idea it got me thinking a bit. Then, when I was in the shower this morning I came up with what I personally think is a good pitch. Immediately following this great epiphany the little voice in my head weighed in as well. Incidentally, while this entire conversation was going on in my head, I forgot whether or not i conditioned my hair, forcing me to repeat the entire process. Now my hair is silky smooth. Also, I'll probably bring up the whole voices inside my head thing at my check up next week.

Anyway, here's the elevator pitch:

Random Stranger: "Well hello there young lady. What prey tell do you do with your life when you are not in this fine elevator."

Me: "Well hello kind sir. Thank you for asking. I am actually in a transition period right now. Currently I am a lawyer and mediator and prior to that I was a social worker. Now, I am looking for my next career move. It seems that my skills and my interests lead right to the nonprofit sector and I am exploring careers involving international humanitarian aid. I think that my unique combination of human service, problem solving, crisis intervention and leadership skills fit well with humanitarian agencies. Plus, I love to travel and explore new places."

Little voice inside my head: "Truth is I have no effing clue what I am doing with my life. I left a defense litigation job about two years ago, then opened my own law & mediation firm. Now, I've decided to close down shop and tell the student loan companies to eat a fart. Additionally, I've been working as a Batista & waitress for the past two years, a position where I have no desire for upward mobility, just cash in hand. I leave work smelling like a not so pleasant combination of french fries and coffee grinds, stop and pick up a BBQ chicken pizza on my way home, eat the entire thing myself and then fall asleep on my couch in a self-loathing puddle of drool."

Dear Little Voice, SUCK IT....GOOD DAY...I SAID GOOD DAY! Thing is that working at a restaurant has allowed me flexibility, financial comfort and the ability to meet amazingly interesting people from around the world. Why just yesterday my supportive mommy sent me an article talking about what a great idea this type of work is when you are looking into starting a career.

When I was 25 I thought that I needed to figure out the rest of my life RIGHT THEN and choose a "professional career path." Now, at 32 I am the happiest I've ever been, waiting tables and figuring things out. And to my dearest student loan companies, I hate to sound cliche but you can't bleed a stone.