More Can, Less Can't

A few years ago, I included the goal "More 'can', less 'can't" in my list of New Year's resolutions.  I felt that I had been saying "can't" a lot over the years; that I had not been imaginative enough in finding solutions to feel happier and more fulfilled.  This feeling was compounded by the third party in my marriage: my husband's company, which was fully in control of where we would live and for long.  A feeling of powerlessness permeated our efforts to make major decisions and to plan our lives.  Intricately linked to that was my slowly-dawning realization that my professional path would be forever and greatly altered each time we moved for my husband's work.

The minor victory of having been partially in control of our move out of New Orleans left me wanting more of that feeling.  Being able to go back to school around that time to learn how clothes are made then increased it.  And so, more "can" trickled in.

During the first couple of weeks in Calgary, sitting on the floor while we waited for our moving truck to bring our belongings, we wondered aloud what would happen if we left the company and had to get back to the U.S. without their assistance.  Again, "can't" snuck in.  We said "No way, that won't happen."  I said, "Whatever happens, I'm not moving us out of here.  I've had it with the moving.  Someone else will have to do it.  Surely any job you have next would offer a moving benefit anyway, right?"

Wrong.  [See also "I'm Never Moving to Houston".]

Turns out sometimes even really great job offers don't come with moving benefits.  And still, we didn't blink.  Plenty of "can" by that time.  The entire move from Calgary to Houston was planned, orchestrated, and paid for by us, and I've never felt calmer or less stressed by a move.  Turns out maybe a feeling of "can" and being in control are linked for me.

Fast forward to now.  Some dust has settled.  Addresses have been changed, closets have been organized, license plates have even been updated.  All that's left is for me to get to work.  And here, I'm drowning in "can't" all over again.  I've sent out some resumes, and have heard very little in response.  I used to always at least get interviews, but lately I haven't even been getting polite rejection letters.

Mindful of the job changes that occurred in Calgary, the currently tighter job market than when I first started working, and the resulting resume that now reflects many changes but not as much professional substance as I would like, I have been taking my time to try to plan the next step.  But I'm getting anxious, and the anxiety is feeding my old adversary "can't".  I don't have enough creative skills yet...there aren't that many clothing companies here...I've never been published...I don't know how to make a portfolio isn't ready yet...the list goes on.  Yet, while I'm in class, I'm confident.  My ideas stand up well to those of my peers, and my skills are also solid.  But my resume...ugh.  If I saw my resume, I probably wouldn't call me either.

I need a re-branding.  My resume needs to be re-organized, from the ground up.  The foundation of it was built a decade ago, and mere updates and cut-and-pastes no longer reflect who I am, or what I can do.    Setting aside the obvious truth that resumes are lame and crappy vehicles for expressing who we are as people, hear me now: my sixth goal for 2012 is a professional re-branding.