Phase one: work and save money for travel and decide where/what you want to do. Check. I worked full-time for four months saving every penny. I found workaway.info and decided to farm in Costa Rica.
Phase two: live in another country and be a part of the culture. Check. I lived and worked on farms in Costa Rica for three months, learning Spanish along the way.
Phase three: Job shadow, study Chinese, and work part-time for the awkward two and half month period before I go to China in April.
Finding a job proved to be a bit more difficult than I had hoped, but I did manage to get a job before February came. Currently I am working as a receptionist at High Desert Rheumatology and Internal Medicine. (It took me a day to remember what the office was called). It’s a great, low stress job with flexible hours and really nice co-workers.
So after securing a job, things started falling into place. I started feeling more motivated to do stuff. I began searching for people who I could job shadow. I contacted a woman who knows a lot of business people in Farmington and she connected me with a graphic designer at Majestic Media. I interviewed her one day about how she got her job and how happy she was with it. Then I sat and watched what she did for an hour.
I’ve realized that connections and relationships can really get you far in life if only you pursue them. In January, I met a woman who owns a bed and breakfast so I asked if I could see what she does. She showed me around the place and told me about how it got started. Currently it is the low season so I didn’t actually get to see her interact with any guests, but I hope to soon.
The third job shadowing I’ve begun is at San Juan Reproduction. I know one of the graphic designers there. I’ve gotten a quick tour of the place and a peek into what she does. I will continue to go there on a weekly basis and will get to play with the programs that she uses on a computer beside her.
I also have a pending job shadowing at a restaurant, which could even turn into another part-time job…
I plan on writing more in-depth on each of my job shadowing experiences. So if you’re interested in the lessons I’ve learned from each of the jobs I’ve dabbled in, be on the lookout.
In addition to my career exploration, I have been asked to help with a new business. So, not only have I been job shadowing, I also am helping design and maintain a website for this business. (More details about this is March when we launch the website). I have never designed a website before, so I am learning a tiny bit of HTML and a bit more CSS as well as blogging. The woman I am working with (I guess you could call her my business partner?) has over twenty years of advertising and marketing experience, so I am getting to learn that aspect of business as well. We met with a man who owns an internet marketing company called ICT Marketing (Insert Catchy Title…yes I did borrow the name for this blog post). So now I have learned about SEO and how to make a webpage come up in google. And the plan is to continue using his expertise to get people to our website. Being a part of beginning this business has provided me opportunity. An opportunity to learn by doing, to create, to do something for Farmington, to make connections, to form relationships, all of which will help me to get a career(s). I’m learning skills that college just doesn’t provide.
Right now my life is a collage. It seems a bit messy, but it works.
My goal of studying Chinese has been a bit difficult as every time I try to think in Chinese it comes out in Spanish…But I’m working on it.
You’d think that once I got a job and started job shadowing that would be enough, but I also enjoy learning/playing bridge twice a week and I’ve started going back to Tae Kwon Do. And I still have free time. Cool, huh? It’s amazing how many things you can fit into a week.