13 September 2011

Overcoming Inertia

"So many fail because they don't get started - they don't go. They don't overcome inertia. They don't begin.” ~ W. Clement Stone

I saw this quote on Twitter (i think) the other day as I was pondering the state of my life and really felt like it was a sign from God or something about my stagnation. As of today it has been 8 weeks since I interviewed for my dream job with the US Army. They're starting this year an Internship for unlicensed social workers and counselors to get the hours needed for supervision as well as the coursework and supervision needed for a substance abuse certification. Its an amazing opportunity and one that I am so grateful to even have been interviewed for as I know that its incredibly competitive. We've been told (through a Facebook page set up by the recruiters) that they will be selecting up to 40 people for 17 different duty locations. However, despite being told it would be a 1-2 week process at my interview (on July 19th) It has now been 8 weeks. With no progress and no sign of progress. One update on the facebook page said that the target start date was October. But then again the target start date in the recruitment email was July and clearly its September and that has not happened.

The interview was one of the stranger ones that I have done. None of the questions were about my qualifications, my resume, my experiences or even social work task based like some of my other interviews. They were all opinion based and in fact there were only 4 questions. The questions were things like how did i feel about working in a military environment, what i thought would be different in military practice then civilian practice, what I thought was the most dangerous drug etc. It was hard to tell how I didn't because I didn't know what they were looking for. If they thought the most dangerous drug is meth and I said alcohol did that knock me out? Who knows! My old boss figures that they know that we're new social workers and they can teach us the substance abuse certification things but they can't teach us to be smart or good thinkers or intuitive so they're looking for more of those things then actual skill based interviewing.

Anyway, in the process of waiting for word on this position I have felt like my life is on hold. My volunteer opportunity which has been the focus of much of my spare time for the last 4 years came to an end as the military hospitals in the DC area transition due to BRAC. I have felt a bit at a loss. This army job could take me to Washington, Georgia, Texas, South Carolina, or keep me here right in DC. I have hesitated to date, make new friends, join clubs etc because I know that at any moment I could be yanked away and loose time or money. In other words I haven't been able to overcome inertia.

But I'm sick of waiting. I am giving the Army until the end of the month to notify me. That will be 10 weeks from interviewing. I know that federal hiring is slow. But 10 weeks is (more) enough. If I don't hear from them by the end of the month I am going to take off on a cross country road trip ending at my friends in Steliacoom, WA where I will continue my job hunt from somewhere new. I haven't been happy in DC for a long time and I don't see that changing. A change of scenery where I can be close to friends from college, my good friend Soldier Boy who just PCS'd there and a different job market seems like a better opportunity then staying here.

I have had 2 interviews for a good job here in DC that would provide the experience I need to get my license however to make this job worthwhile (if offered) I would need to stay for 4.5 years (2 years to get my supervision, 2 years to repay them for paying for the supervision and the 6 month probationary period). The idea of staying in DC for 4.5 more years makes me feel like vomiting. This is when I knew I needed to over come inertia and make my move.

No more putting it off. No more waiting. No more wishing. No more waiting for inertia. Time to push up over the hill. October 6th I hit the road.

Now who has road trip tips?

1 comment:

  1. You definitely should grab that opportunity for that substance abuse counselor certification program as it would not only help you learn more, you would also help others in the process.