I’m scared people who read my blog will think I’m pathetic

I’ve been blogging for 18 months under my name in Spanish about personal branding, studies, college and self-knowledge because I studied business and that’s what I thought I wanted to blog about.

But now I want to write in English about fiction and poetry I’ve kept closeted in my room.

I know you’re an advocate of writing under the same blog & under your name.

But I feel as if the readers would feel lost –because I know I am lost and I want to embrace it. But I don’t want to confuse anyone and let them know I have been confused all along. Should I use a pen name and keep a second blog secret until I’m ready to tell the world?

Should I train colleagues to do my job?

I recently started a new job. I love the work that I am tasked to do and for the most part I really like the organization and most other people that I work with.

My supervisor asked me in the interview if I would not mind training other colleagues to do my job to help with their capacity development. I said I was fine with this as I really wanted the job.

In the three weeks since I started I have found my colleagues apathetic about their jobs, and they do not equally share information with me regarding their roles and responsibilities. However, my biggest concern is training a colleague to take over and do my job. Additionally, my colleagues have been working with my supervisor longer than I have and they already have a good relationship with my supervisor.

I work in a small department, so I have no other choice but to train these colleagues. What perspective should I take on being asked to train other colleagues to do my work – is this a good thing or a bad thing? How should I proceed to train such colleagues, yet ensure my own job security in the future?

How can I succeed at a new job with Aspergers?

I’m a diagnosed woman with Asperger’s heading into a job in customer service. The environment I am heading into is like high school, according to many of the reviews I read on Glassdoor and other sites. Any direct advice for this type of job so I can succeed?

In my town there are no other jobs. The actual unemployment rate is really high and among the disabled it is even higher of course. I want to work, very badly. I also want to be a success in my own eyes as well as the eyes of my parents and my friends.

Any wise words would be appreciated. (Did I phrase that right?)

I’m about to be fired. Can I save the job?

I am a Mechanical Drafter (CAD Operator I), for a Mechanical Contractor by day. By night, I am a courier driver that has a specific route. I live in Minnesota.

I’m married and have three grown children, two of which still are struggling to be grown. I have three grandchildren, of which me and my wife help raise one them almost full time. My wife is a stay at home wife, she has some health problems. I am very patient with my wife, since she has been very patient with me and my outbursts at times and I have gone to therapy for this.

I have always been the socially awkward person. I fit in sometimes and most of the time I don’t. I have ADHD, more the ADD than the Hyperactive. Medication for ADHD doesn’t help me. I’m left handed and feel like I’m somewhere on the Autism spectrum but it’s not pronounced enough to ever have made a diagnosis. I have social anxiety, depression at times, and sometimes anger issues. I take Cymbalta, lowest dose possible to help with depression and anxiety. I recently got a membership at a local Anytime Fitness and started working out three times a week.

I wrote to you because I’m having issues at my job. I work with other drafters, designers, and engineers to draw and update plans. I have been with this specific company for a year now and have mixed emotions on how I feel I am doing at this job.

The problem is my attention to detail. I have had two sit downs with my boss, the lead mechanical engineer. The first conversation was last October and the second was in January. The conversation goes, you are making to many mistakes, why is this happening, what are you doing to not make mistakes.

The first conversation I had with him was not a shock to me, I knew I was making mistakes but felt it was beginner mistakes, since I had just started working there a couple of months before. This is when I learned that I cannot say “I’m doing my best”. This kind of threw me off guard a little but it made me really look at myself and ask am I really doing my best. So, I did my research and found a good process I thought would work for me.

A couple of more months pass, I’m trying to learn and implement this new process of doing work. I’m still making mistakes, not major, but mistakes a newbie would make. My boss has another sit down with me in January. I tell him the process of what i’m doing and so on. He is really frustrated with me and is ready to let me go and lay me off. See, this is where the not fitting in part I think goes into play. I’m not the best conversationalist and in meetings i really clam up. Obviously, i’m not doing this on purpose, its just my physical and emotional makeup of who I am. I have poor short term memory and giving input at meetings is a real struggle for me. I really do try, like keeping a notepad for notes at all times, sometimes recording learning/training sessions, and so on.

So, it’s been a year working here and I still feel like an outsider. I feel like they consider me incompetent at times. I really have learned a lot in my year here. There still is so much more to learn. But I feel like i am on a short leash. I feel like my next mistake will be my last and I will get laid off or I will be the first on the chopping block if that ever happens. I’ve told my boss i’m never intentionally trying to make mistakes and mess up. He knows I have a process. Who knows, maybe I’m over analyzing everything. I came this far to try and get some career advice.

I can’t bring a girlfriend home to my family

Lately I’ve been texting this girl that I seem to like. Yet whenever I imagine us in a relationship I get concerned. And it’s that way not just with her but with any girl I really like. I just turned 22 in February and I’m still in College and have never experienced anything sexually. Never a first kiss, nothing.

I’ve been doing some self reflection trying to figure this out, but I don’t think it’s the fact that I’m new to these things. I think it maybe has something to do with my family situation. My dad, my sister and I aren’t close at all, we rarely even talk to each other, and we live in the same house! My brother and my mom and I have a decent relationship but for some odd reason we don’t feel comfortable expressing our love for each other. We do all love each other as a family, but after some arguments and some bad experiences with each other we seem to have grown apart to the point where it almost feels like were all strangers. The only member of my family I have a perfect relationship with is my little brother who is about to turn 9.

I look at how dysfunctional my family is everyday, and the thought of one day having to bring a girl home who I really like or a girlfriend to introduce or worse, her parents wanting to meet my own, scares me to death.

My parents are always arguing about stupid things, my brother and sister are always arguing, the dog is barking and it really is not what I want for my future girlfriend or even wife to have to see or deal with. My mom is overweight and has bad eating manners, my dad comes home from work and watches tv all day in the second living room all by himself. And my brother and sister lock each other up in their rooms and have zero respect for my parents. I can’t stress enough  how dysfunctional this family is, as of late there hasn’t been any horrible events, but in the not too distant past there has been many bad experiences. My dad has hit my mom before. Things of that nature. My parents provide food, and a roof over our heads and there is nothing lacking in that regard, but emotionally we just aren’t there for each other.

I feel the only way to fix our situation is to spend some time away from each other. That’s why I’ve been trying to save up so that I can move out soon, because I’m nothing like them. I’m an honest person, and I live my life well. Everyone that knows me is always shocked when they see who I live with, because they wonder why I didn’t turn out the same.

Anyways, if I was to tell my parents I had a girlfriend that I really cared about I would feel extremely vulnerable. They wouldn’t change there ways, not even for me and my future, or for the person I care about. And that would hurt me every single day. I hope this is making sense, it would be like a constant slap in the face, it would be like collectively they would be saying “we don’t care about you and your girlfriend, we’re just going to continue our old ways”. And my dad and mom would continue to under-appreciate me and all that I do, and  I just wouldn’t feel comfortable telling my parents about a girlfriend.

This is probably why I also feel odd when it comes to having a girlfriend I really like. I don’t want you to think that I can’t express love, I can and I do it all the time, for my friends and professors anyone else I care about. (Fortunately outside my family, I have plenty of good friends) That’s not the problem. I just can’t with my family, except for my little brother. It just feels “awkward” and strange. I can’t even tell them happy birthday, or happy mothers day etc.

After writing this, I take back what I said about feeling odd having a girlfriend, I’ve now noticed that’s clearly not the problem, the problem is my family, and the vulnerability that comes with them knowing something like this. I would just feel odd and guilty after having treated my girlfriend very nicely, and then I can’t even say a simple “hello” to my own sister or my own dad. I’d feel like a hypocrite, or something.

I’m afraid that the only way this family can be saved is by all of us siblings moving out, and living our own lives, and just not seeing each other for a while, then we can come back and really “start over”. Or maybe this just can’t be fixed.

I apologize for the rant, but I just wanted to be as detailed as possible so that you can clearly understand what’s going on  here. None of this will stop me from being in a relationship with someone special, but what should I do when it comes to telling my parents? And can this dysfunctional family be fixed?

Finally, have you ever heard of a situation like this before? I truly feel alone on this one.

Best career launch strategy for someone with Aspergers

I am simply overjoyed to have found your site. The resemblances in our paths seems uncanny, but you’re some years ahead and exactly where I want to be. I am a 21 year old with Aspergers, can’t keep a job to save my life, rarely change, shower or brush my teeth, and the only thing I’ve managed to make work for me is working in my parent’s bookstore.

Now I don’t get hours anymore and I am expecting a child, wondering how on earth to make it work. My partner and everyone around me says I would do best at creating my own job, but I can’t for the life of me figure out what that should be, or focus my energy on one thing long enough to take a project to fruition.

So my question is, when you were first figuring out how to get started at running your own projects instead of finding jobs to get fired from over and over, what was the most valuable advice you received or, alternately would in hindsight have hoped to know then?

Can I get hired for being good at listening?

I’m job searching, so I’m trying to put myself on paper. Something that occurs to me as one of my best skills is listening. I’m the kind of good listener that stranger tell their secrets to. People have brilliant ideas while talking to me. I’ve used it to get by in situations where I felt really lost and ignorant, like the summer I went to a hacking conference without knowing the slightest thing about computers.

I know this skill can be useful, because its how I’ve made most of my friends, its made people fall in love with me, and in school it got me great grades.  I just don’t know how to get a job with it. I don’t know what type of fields or positions it would be valued in. On a resume, it looks silly, and I worry it comes across as passive.

I have other skills too. I’m insightful and creative. I’m good at leading people and inspiring them (used to direct plays). In my heart I think listening is what makes me stand out, and strengthens my other skills.

P.S. I notice people mention their personality type in your letters, I’m definitely either INFP or ENFP.

How should artists use the Internet to promote themselves?

I am an artist that has been drawing since I was four, dabbled in oils for a while then took a ten year break from art all together. I just recently picked it back up about a month ago and with my husband’s blessing I have decided to pursue an art career part-time. There’s a lot of information that I have been reading and researching on the Internet but it can be overwhelming sometimes!

Any advice for beginning artists like me? I have a goal to build up my portfolio to twenty art pieces by the end of this year, and I am currently enrolled in an art business and marketing webinar course online (it’s a 2 month course). I’m reading books, reading tips online, practicing my painting, I have a website and social media pages for my art. Am I missing something? You can be honest with me. I know most people do not think it is realistic to pursue a career as an artist, even part-time.

How can I get a career I like while I’m on maternity leave?

I’m 27 and happily married to my husband (33) but my career is worth nothing but emotional torment. I work at a bank and my job is administrative and empty and horrible for my creative soul but it pays the bills. We are getting ready to start a family and need my job for the maternity leave. My husband makes decent money working for smaller companies and has full flexibility over his calendar, but we rely on my corporate role for the job security, perks and benefits. But I hate it and I am dying every day. Worse, my manager and I DO NOT get along.

Do you have any advice as to how to balance my everyday misery while I hang onto the job for what it has to offer? And do you have any advice for finding more meaningful work while I am on maternity leave so that I can establish something for myself, independent from the corporate world?

Is it okay to not job hunt and live off unemployment? (And, can I be a journalist?)

Should I continue collecting unemployment insurance as long as I can, or accept the next job offer I get?

Right now I’m happily collecting unemployment, and applying and interviewing for new jobs at a steady pace.

I am really enjoying not working for the first time in years. I can live comfortably off of my savings unemployment benefits until they expire. I volunteer for several organizations I love, so I am still very busy. And for the first time in my life, I might have the time, energy, and means to really travel, as long as I continue to adhere to my state’s unemployment requirements. I also have plans to start in-state graduate school in the fall for a professional degree program that I know will expand my skills and career options in my city, so I’m not totally without direction.

I am 26, have a 4-year college degree, no loans, work in journalism, and live in the Midwest, where jobs in my industry are harder to come by.

Is it career suicide to just remain unemployed between now and graduate school? Will the gap in my resume become too much of a problem after a couple more months pass? I am looking forward to getting back to work in what will hopefully be a less decrepit environment, and with every passing week I get a little bit more anxious about just finding a job already. I agree with you that it’s good to try new careers, but how often is one lucky enough to be on unemployment and without a care in the world? I also don’t think my story should raise any red flags with future employers, since essentially, “My contract with company X expired in February, and I elected not to stay because I wanted to travel and pursue personal projects. I felt like my goals and skills had outgrown that position and company, and now I’m really eager to apply myself to the next opportunity.”

Thank you so much for your time, Penelope.