Which job is better?

I work for the state at a VERY relaxed (we can wear whatever- flip flops, tank tops- whatever) The thing is, I don’t have a lot to do. They acknowledge this. I am bored much of the time, which drives me nuts.

My conundrum is- should I interview for another state job (that pays more or an advance, but who knows what the atmosphere is)? It really is a good group I work with and I have worked for the devil himself in a female form in the past.

I’ve only been here 6 months. It could get better or not. I’ve asked for additional duties but none are available. I worry that my job could go away because of that, but when I expressed my concerns, they assure me not. But of course- it is government.

Thoughts?

I feel like I’m in a job that doesn’t fit who I am

I’m 25 years old and I work in a senior advisor position within a government.  I help form decisions with some of the most senior elected officials that appear on TV news hour. I navigate political warfare, and I make more than the combined salaries of my parents.

But somehow this meteoric rise churns in my stomach since by night I inherently reside in another galaxy. I’m a hobbyist performer in breakdance/funkstyles/hiphop culture. I share communal practice space and session 3-4 times a week after work. I’m more in-tune with the grassroots arts organizations and people that meet what we call a “struggling artist” profile. I do local outreach with them in fact.  I know and can recite all the lyrics of Notorious B.I.G’s Big Poppa, prefer high top sneakers over oxfords, and generally grew up with this type of environment since high school.

I find myself in a space in life right now where I simply don’t have a place called home in the realm of social circle. Don’t get me wrong, I can mingle with the best of the suits in a networking session, but I’m genuinely not interested in hearing about how fast your Porsche 911 can go. In the same way I admire the artist community, I couldn’t find myself fully relating to some arts educators who tell stories about literally saving children from suicide by teaching them dance.

I feel there’s something wrong with me. I wake up many mornings wondering if I should pursue other things. Do “successful” people at mid 20’s ever face loneliness? What if I don’t find myself fitting in with the country club?

What should I say about the company I tried to start but didn’t?

I spent a year working on my app but have nothing to show for it since it’s not ready. What should I do about my resume? Do I  1) leave the app off completely and have a gap there, 2) tell the truth about running out of money (which sounds like a lame excuse to me), 3) say I dropped the app because I realized it wasn’t going to work out, 4) forget changing jobs?

I know how to talk about the business. My concern is, there’s a difference between getting something off the ground and failing, and not even finishing the thing in the first place. It sounds like I don’t have the grit to get something done. Or that the idea was stupid and I’m not qualified to run their business because I’ll just come up with more stupid ideas.

Advice on daily decision making with Asperger’s

I am a college student with Asperger’s and I need some advice.

Daily decisions really wear me out and I am incredibly bad at making them. For instance, I had a wisdom tooth ache and I didn’t realize that it was causing all the health problems I’ve been having for years until I connected the dots yesterday. Also, I had trouble on deciding when to schedule my dental appointment because it would conflict with school. So, in making that decision, I had to weigh my own level of pain, the severity of the ailment and my personal schedule. It really drained me.

Also, I have a lot of trouble making daily snap decisions, such as whether to have lunch with friends or alone, where to study, what I should do with someone new I’ve just met, what I should do about an event/unexpected social plans that just cropped up but that may conflict with other errands that are in my schedule, when I should answer email or check my Facebook account, how I should behave when confronted with certain unique situations I’ve never encountered before, etc. etc.

I really don’t want this problem to keep me from living the life I want to live or stop me from doing what I want. Do you have any advice for me? How do you do it? Any tips would be extremely appreciated!

What to say in an interview if I’ve been fired?

I love your site and have a sticky question to ask about resumes/interviews when you’ve been unemployed. You said you yourself had been fired a few times, so I hoped you might have some insight.

I worked at a company with a high rate of turnover and what was (in my mind) a toxic work environment. I was fired for the first time in my professional life last summer.

I know it’s something like career suicide to say your old bosses were horrible people and that you were victimized, but when asked about why you left the last job, what is appropriate to say?

I was considering something to the effect of, “Restructuring.” And also bringing up the detail that I was replaced by a contract worker, but I myself was offered continued freelance work with the company, after the fact (which shows that I couldn’t have been a horrific employee and that they liked my work).

Do I mention that there was constant restructuring at my old company? That I saw 60% of my colleagues get let go, restructured, or otherwise terminated?

It seems unfair that the only time my performance was called into question, it was by a volatile company. All the same, a lengthy explanation makes it sound like I’m covering something up.

I know the best course is diplomacy, but how do I cover my butt while being professional?

When are questions insulting?

I have really great people on my network on Facebook (but not all of them talk to me) and yesterday I needed a few brilliant ideas that I turned to my Chat box and saw who among my Tech connections (people I look up and respect because of their ideas) are online and it happens that this “Social Media Boss” was online so I approached her with,

“Hi [name]
I was wondering if you could share some crazy ideas like what’s the craziest thing you’d do for something you’d really want?”

I fired up the question hoping it was interesting and perhaps she’d be so kind to share some, and I was totally taken aback by her answer:

“What made you think I would share ideas with you?”

I told her I’m sorry if she doesn’t want to and that’s fine with me; and I forgot her services are paid.

Now me and this lady have a lot of mutual friends, she’s a boss in a consulting company, but we never really talked except once I told her that I really liked the video interview of her despite the criticisms on it and she thanked me. Besides that, the second encounter was the unfortunate event yesterday.

Then she went on that “Do you pay by hour?” I told her I couldn’t afford her services and since she’s someone I look up to, perhaps I could get some ideas. Then she told me it was my nice way of saying I like her services but I want it for free.

Now I get it, maybe she felt insulted and violated that she’s someone that has mastered her skill and has become a “big shot”(at least her region and she thinks she is), and I, have been ‘stupid’ to ask for her ideas when she’s actually paid to do it. Then she goes on with:

“Thank your luck you’re one lowly an individual” that I wouldn’t trigger a backlash. Now that I must tell you, hurts.

But then again, I apologized if she felt insulted and violated because after all, we don’t have any strong association. She posted on her Wall that if I really “look up to her”, I wouldn’t ask her on a “cheap Facebook message”.

Penelope, I wonder if is that how most “big shots” really respond? Like when a blog reader asks you a question, would you feel insulted that I solicit your opinion or idea for free?

I would really appreciate your comment on this. Perhaps you could shed me and your other blog readers some light as to when is it “good” to ask questions, or is it even okay to ask “professionals” like her when she does consulting for a living. I thought it was an innocent question, but what do you think?

Hey, remember that time you told us you posed nude?

I’ve been a big fan of yours recently.  I can’t help but think you said that you posed nude a few times in one of your blog posts before.

I was wondering if there was any way to see those shots?

If not, sorry for asking.  Just being frank, something I wouldn’t mind seeing.

My daughter with Aspergers doesn’t want to do anything

I have a daughter with Aspergers.  She doesn’t know that she has it and if we try to speak to her about it she will not accept it.   I read your article Don’t Miss Diagnosing Aspergers in Young Girls and my daughter also can’t seem to wash her hair properly, nor comb it . . . ever.

She is 14 and doesn’t have friends.  She says that she does, but they are all online friends who have never met her in person.  It is hard to find help for her since she thinks that there is absolutely nothing wrong.

She is not a good student, the only class she does well in is Language Arts. She is disorganized and will just lie on her back with her computer on her lap all day long if I don’t force her to do something else.  She can’t manage time.

What I am trying so desperately to figure out is what kind of help works?  What type of therapist works?  Especially for someone who thinks that they don’t need any help? We live in Raleigh, NC.  I don’t know where to go or what to do.

Timing of baby and grad school

I am in my late 20s and married to an amazing man. I have a liberal arts degree, and after much unhappiness in the workplace + a job layoff, I enrolled in a grad program. I love what I’m pursuing (speech pathology), as it’s much more rewarding and interesting. I’m an INFJ personality type, and the cutthroat business world wasn’t for me.

However, I am feeling very stressed about when is the “right time” to have a child. I considered this before beginning school but assumed I would figure it out, though I still have not. My ideal age is 30-32, and my husband agrees, but this is when I will be new to my career (I graduate when I’m 29).

I fear I won’t be taken seriously if I get pregnant in my first few years of work. I’ve also considered getting pregnant while in grad school and trying to “time it” so the baby is born after the degree is completed but before I begin working. I know ultimately no one can decide for us, but I’d appreciate any insights from you & your readers.

How can I sell my inventions?

I am a 56 yr old who was laid off a great job (kind of) around 4 yrs ago because I was a egotistical person thinking they will not ever lay me off being the most important person there besides the owner! I was their main product designer / INVENTOR / engineer / problem solver. I gave that company so many ideas/inventions I lost count. I gave them at least 12 patent ideas, maybe more I lost count of those also!

The problem might had started when the owner/ex-president of the company, took the CEO’s and most of the office people out to lunch after I had gave them enough ideas/inventions for the company to move in to a bigger building (around 3 yrs in to that employment). He told every one there in front of me that it was because of all my new ideas we were moving in to a bigger facility, so that gave me a big ego! From that point on maybe not noticing it but that ego stop my career as becoming a much better product designer.

I thought I didn’t need any more education other then my god given talent to invent/create new ideas/inventions! So all those years there instead of improving my education (thinking I would retire from there) I screwed up because now after trying for the last 4 yrs to get back in to the same field of the only thing I have ever been good at, I need this that and the other thing as far as new programs needed to land such a job! I can still invent / design new ideas all day long but just can’t talk any one/company in to giving me a chance like that last employer did!

I have found a toy/novelty/invention broker lately to try and sell some of many ideas, he has taken on 88 out of 120 ideas/inventions I presented to him, but how long that will take who knows? In mean time I can’t afford go back to school, I can’t afford patents and I can’t find the same type of  work that is my passion and know I can do it for any company if given the chance, but they will not;(

I have been a single dad the whole time I was at that last employment for over 20 yrs, raised two boys the best I could, one is in a junior college and WE can barely afford that! Meaning my son and I do any type of work we can. Him mostly part time and me full time at temporary positions I hate!

Physical jobs at my age are very hard since I have arthritis and bad knees from many years of racing motocross since I was a kid! I raced high school motocross and turned pro right out of high school, while some friends were pursuing college or starting good careers as longshoremen or firemen, I was traveling around the country pureeing a very limited career as a professional motocross racer! Well I got injured way too much to go on and came home to start working driving cement trucks, cement pumps etc for my family / uncles. Which was okay money but was not my passion and even though I knew that it was the 1970’s/80’s and was just the thing to do if you could. Going to college was not a thing to do for most back then as I remember it.

So now how many years later I have no career any more, no retirement in site, no way to support my family, living in complete stress and depression:( Maybe yes one of my ideas / inventions will sell but until then I am wearing knee braces and taking tons of Aleve to try and get a job as a truck drive again at 56 yrs old, and all the while my friends who keep at it are retiring, it sucks lol!(and I remember them all saying”you,ll be rich some day Rodney with all those ideas”). They still say that while I worry stress about my rent and bills!

I really just want to have the chance again to do my passion or god give talent (my only god given talent since the two wheel talent didn’t pan out!) . I have no business savvy to try and do any of my ideas/inventions on my own. I have written some short stories and people who have read them like them allot and said I should pursue that! But again I would need some education to be a writer which is nearly impossible right now. I would love to write since I have many ideas for stories reality or fiction.

My son has a talent for writing also and he is pursuing that right now even though his complete family and friends are against it, except me! He wrote and directed a few movies / short stories in high school and two of them won at the high school film festivals (one got a standing ovation!). So he has talent and I want him to pursue it, in fact I want to join him in some short story writing.

But it all comes down to paying the rent, I do just about any thing and have for the last few years to try and keep him going at what he loves and myself also, but off and on we almost ended up on the street! I have sold just about every thing, used up my complete life savings and 401k is gone! we live month to month with stuff pre-pack just in case but no where to actually go but the street, and I know there are lots of people in the same boat:(

I have many ideas / inventions ready to go as far as having working prototypes etc, but no way to do them myself.  And I have gone out on my own to try and sell/license them off, with no luck. In fact I have been RIP OFF which has add to my depression knowing we could had been doing okay right now, if these different companies(assholes) had not rip me off, or if I could had afforded to have patents on those ideas!

Last year my son and I work really hard on one of my ideas, with videos, drawings and good working prototypes we tested late at night in secluded / private areas.  We brought that idea to a company who signed all the correct/proper NDA contracts etc, but a few months later it/my invention was on the market and they had no intentions of reimbursing me for it;( So even more depression/stress set in for not only me but my son). We tried to get legal help but can’t afford it so now one of my potential ideas is on the market making these assholes money! And that was not the first time, so I have found a guy who has taken on my ideas/inventions as a broker to hopefully sell them and not rip me off!

But at this point I would hire any one or let any one try and sell any of my many inventions/ideas in many different industries for profit to share! So if you know any one trustworthy enough to help please let me know?

But how can any one know which way it will go? You don’t and can’t, but just pray it will some day pan out before we are out on the street or before I am too old to enjoy it! I am working three temporary part time/full time jobs that pay shit and are very hard at my age just wishing/praying it all pans out for my family/son!

Well that’s part of my story I guess, one depressed/broken/stressed/rip off inventor dad looking for some thing?