Category Archives: Inspiration/Motivation

How To Get Hired Without Standing Up

I’ve decided that once I get a big-girl job, I’m going to write a book entitled, “How To Get Hired Without Standing Up.”

To put it gently, my internship is very low maintenance, low-demand, boring. It’s at a production studio so perhaps the laction (lack of action) is circumstantial. I ask my supervisors for things to do, but they never have anything to give me despite how busy they all claim they are. Maybe they think I’m stupid. Either way, I am here every other day with eight hours to kill (including my lunch hour, thank god).

Lately, I’ve started posting articles on BuzzFeed which has proven to kill the first half of my day pretty seamlessly. I posted an article on Monday which since then has gone viral on Facebook and Twitter and currently has close to 45,000 views. All I did was take screen-shots of Google automatic fill-ins. I literally did nothing to contribute to it besides compiling them and posting them. I guess that’s what counts these days. I’ve recently achieved the accolade of Top 50 Community Contributors (whatever that means). My best friend and g-chat  counterpart  sent me a job posting to work for BuzzFeed as a blogger/editor. I said, why the hell not and applied for the job. I’ve done all of this in a chair. I’m anxiously awaiting to hear back from the BuzzFeeders.

I’ve been at this internship since December and have applied close to 30 jobs. I’ve applied through LinkedIn and through company websites. I’ve had email correspondences with recruiters and the like. Most of the jobs I applied for were for corporate companies through a generic generated form so I don’t expect to hear back unless someone falls asleep at their computer, smacks their head on the keyboard and by some stroke of odd luck, wakes up to my resume on their screen. I have had some luck with this process though. As fairly well-known digital advertising agency contacted me for a phone interview (which went well) and then they called me in for an in-person interview (which I thought was to seal the deal), but they decided to hire from within or freeze the position or something whatever. It didn’t work out, but if anything, it proved that when a pair of eyes got on my resume, it was impressive enough for an interview. Imagine a world where humans dealt with resumes right off the bat. I’d have like 50 jobs. I hate robots. I’d say my record for the job hunt is a soft 1 for 1. I didn’t get the job, but that wasn’t due to me. At least that’s what I tell myself when I wake up in the middle of the night in a cold sweat.

I’m not really sure if applying to more jobs heightens my chances of getting a human to look at my resume, but while I’m here, sitting doing nothing, I might as well.

P.S. If you’re interested in checking out my BuzzFeed Page and/or article, I’ve posted the links below!

Page: http://www.buzzfeed.com/danielledweck

Article: http://www.buzzfeed.com/danielledweck/a-comprehensive-list-of-what-americans-want-to-kno-8y0m

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(I Can’t Get No) Gratification

I was riding the subway a few days ago, and I saw that the nine-year-old boy next to me was playing Slots on his phone. I have to say, that has to be the least gratifying thing in the world. I mean, you “pull” the lever and then, best case scenario, you get three in a row and you win absolutely nothing. I was so frustrated for the kid, and he was having the time of his life. Despite, my instant cynicism, the dumbass on the subway proved that things are as good as what you make of them. He could have been sitting on the subway staring at the person staring at him (me), but instead he was playing Slots and enjoying his ride.

I thought I was an “in the moment” kind of person, but lately I’ve been stuck fantasizing about the future and dreading the present. No bueno. At this rate, I will literally enjoy nothing ever. I have been demoting myself to strive for satisfaction rather than gratification (as a point of reference, in my dictionary, to satisfy is to settle and to gratify is to indulge and enjoy – one step beyond satisfaction I guess). Hmmm, so how to enjoy two unrewarding “jobs” and the broke (not the poor) life? For starters every day, I’m going to achieve satisfaction and strive for gratification. I should stop myself here. I’m not one of those people that can just change their cynical and self-deprecating ways. I’m far too stubborn for that, and comical self-deprecation is kind of my thing. Not trying to give that up. So for now, I’ll just make sure to write a little every day so when people ask me what I’m doing, I can say I’m a writer without feeling guilty enough to correct myself and say, “Well I’m a struggling writer, except I haven’t struggled yet, since I haven’t submitted anything to anyone, and I’m not a starving writer because I’m always eating.” Then I just come off as a fat-ass, which is fine. I’ll just tell people that I can’t afford to be a writer yet. Better yet, I’ll say that I’m saving up to become a writer.

I’m going to attempt to enjoy THE RIDE (full circle blog post; don’t act like you’re not impressed) that is my life as a 22 year-old, living in Manhattan, with no man tying her down. GIRL POWER! HOLLA! PEACE!

How I spent my Sunday

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Golden Globe Reflections and Ponderings

Here are some of my top moments from the 2013 Golden Globes:

  1. “Everyone’s getting a little loose now that we’re all losers!” – Amy Poehler
  2. Paul Rudd’s teleprompter impromptu
  3. “That was Hillary Clinton’s husband!” – Amy Poehler
  4. Everyone’s delayed reactions to jokes they don’t get once they realize the camera is on them
  5. “Me too. I used to win prizes for that too” – Tina Fey’s response to Julianne Moore’s nomination for her portrayal of Sarah Palin
  6. “Kristin Wiiieegg” and “Will Pharrell” presenting nominees
  7. Tommy Lee Jones hating everything

Food for thought: T. Swift, don’t be disappointed that Adele beat you at something singing related. It will happen over and over again so better get used to it now.

These are funny too! http://mashable.com/2013/01/14/golden-globes-gifs/?utm_source=twitterfeed&utm_medium=twitter

Credit to Mashable for sharing this.

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I think it would be fun to produce an award show. Actually that would be too stressful. I want to be the person that gets to laugh and say, “Oh they looked pissed, cut to them!” The position would require someone who is up to date with their celebrity gossip so when Tina Fey says, “You know what Taylor Swift, you stay away from Michael J. Fox’s son…she needs some “me time” to learn about herself,” you can assume Taylor Swift is going to HATE it and everyone else wants to see her reaction. I don’t know the technical name for this position, but I think I’ll call it the Puss Spotter. A Puss Spotter also needs to be prepared. He/She needs to be able to anticipate a joke. For example, after Jodie Foster’s long-ass therapy session speech, a good Puss Spotter should expect a joke from the host such as, “Just making sure…Jodie Foster is a lesbian, right” – or something of that nature.

Watching all of my dream women on stage last night reinvigorated my fading dream to be a comedy writer. When I moved to Manhattan in July, I was energized, inspired, and confident. I had an idea of what I wanted to do with my life, but working at the restaurant started to depress me and caused me to change my dream. It seemed like being a successful television writer was impossible at worst and unrewarding at best. I decided to walk the streets dreamless and just see what happens. I cannot say one way or the other which I prefer – having a dream to work towards or to keep truckin’ and hope a dream will appear without even realizing it. I guess I’ll let you know once I know.

I can say this though with great confidence, it is better to be dreamless and hopeful than dreamful and hopeless. I have been both.

This may sound dramatic which, if you ask any of my friends, is a word no one would use to describe me, but I was almost brought to tears the two times Lena Dunham walked to the stage to accept her well-deserved Golden Globes: 1) Because watching her waddle in her heels TWICE was as painful as getting toothpaste in your eye and 2) Because of her genuine gratitude and humbleness She’s the woman!

The combination of Amy Poehler and Tina Fey delivering on their hosting duties, Lena Dunham and Adele winning has resulted in a dream reinspired– a word that Microsoft word does not recognize, because it isn’t a real word and also hasn’t been added in my Word dictionary yet. Glad I can add it. Now the question is, “where to start?”

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A Quick Peek Into 2013

Wow the New Year! Big things are happening. My apartment smells like New Years Day – stale sex and Fritos. In my last post, I talked about how life would feel more balanced once my adult life retained certain parts of my college life. Well, considered me balanced. I’m sitting on my living room* on my carpet** next to our Christmas tree typing this blog post while listening in on the profound conversational stylings of my 5 guy friends (two of whom are my roommates, one of whom is my ex-boyfriend):

Gabe: We shouldn’t be shit heads today

Collective groan

Nathan: I don’t know whose jacket this is but I’m snuggling with it

Gabe: Don’t cum on it, Nathan

Ezra: Who wants to see Les Mis?

Tyler: We should go bowling. We should go skeet shooting.

Gabe: I’m making us dinner reservations.

Tyler: We should play ping-pong…

And so on and so forth. This is my life.

I woke up this morning with my best friend in my bed, wearing the same dress she was wearing last night. When I opened my eyes she asked, “Why is this part of the bed wet?” I didn’t respond and went back to sleep. Three hours later, I wake up again, walk into my living room to find the previously mentioned guys – one on the recliner, one on the couch and one sleeping upright.

One of my roommates kept some of us awake with some ungodly sex noises last night/this morning. “It was like National Geographic but I couldn’t change the channel,” recalled Ezra. I decided that he owed all seven of us a nice bagel shmorgishborg for breakfast.

Currently, the boys and myself are each holding a piece of paper with a number on it. The number represents our spot in line for the shower. My roommate and his lady friend just finished their shower. As we all turned to look at them take the walk back to his bedroom*** Gabe said, “Only judgments await you out here!”

I don’t think this group is going anywhere today.

2013 is feeling a lot like college. The New Year has thus far kicked off with a promising start.

* You have to form a single file line if more than one person plans on walking through it

**Our carpet is actually those foam puzzle pieces that day cares use because they’re easy to clean/remove when a two year old pees on it. We have it for the same reason.

*** We converted our actual living room into a bedroom, so the only things separating our makeshift living room from his bedroom, are a bookshelf and a curtain. Both have proven to be ineffective as noise barriers.

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What to Expect When You’re Expecting Nothing

There is one more thing that I’m grateful for that I intentionally failed to mention in my previous post.

I’m grateful that I’m a “creative-type” and not something significantly more practical and lucrative like a banker or lawyer.

Granted, it’s taken me about 22 years to finally embrace this gift of mine. Before now, I thought I could force myself to be interested in something involving numbers or formulas, so I can have a job and be financially well-off, and then once I was rich enough to retire at around age 40, I could then do what I would actually be happy doing like writing comedy or travelling. I made it through one and a half economics classes before learning that while I could force myself to be interested in economics, I could not force myself to be good at it.

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I’d describe myself as a well rounded – not in stature, but in intellect and other facets. I received the same score on each section of the SATs…twice (800s across the board, duh). My favorite courses in college were my creative writing classes and my biology classes. I’m also ambidextrous which means nothing. Just kidding, you should be jealous about that, it’s awesome. Want to see a picture of me? It’s next to the term “cross-dominance” in the dictionary.

I am unhindered as far as coordination and interests go and there are certain things I naturally excel at like writing and being funny – obviously. Then there are things I could be improve in if I cared to, like math and using the word “like” less. Then, there are things that I should just steer away from all together like financial accounting and multiple-choice tests.

Yesterday, my friend (a fellow creative-type) asked me if I regretted not pursuing something like medicine or finance. Instantly I said, “No! Pragmatists have no fun. Doing something creative is way cooler than being good at chemistry!” I disregarded the fact that my banker roommate and my biochemist friend were sharing the couch with me. I do believe that scientists utilize a different kind of creativity. I don’t think I can “regret” something that I was born with and wasn’t my choice to have. Wow, my friend Gloria was right. This reads a lot like an “It Gets Better” script. Let me clarify – I’m not saying it gets better, mostly because it hasn’t yet, and I don’t like to lie if I don’t have to. Let me clarify – I lie if I have to.

Creativity is in my blood. My dad is a former creative director at an ad agency turned photographer and my mom was a badass producer at another ad agency. My step-mom is the daughter of an engineer so creativity is also in my step-blood. This gift wasn’t my choice, but if it were, I would still choose it. Creatives are rarities. Sure, everyone sees things in unique ways, but creatively driven people see things in better, unique ways. I will take being a part-time waitress, a part-time unpaid intern splattered with perpetual uncertainty and anxiety in exchange for one day being one of the most respected creative minds of my generation along with world domination.

So, things I’ve learned this year:

  1. I’m creative, and that’s something I’ll never be able to shake
  2. Doing something I’m good at, won’t necessarily make me happy
  3. I shouldn’t pursue something I’m bad at
  4. I shouldn’t give up.

Peace out 2012, and a big Fuck You!

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Independence Daze

Midway through high school, volleyball quickly consumed my life. Every other weekday and most weekends were spent at practice and tournaments. Yes, this did take a toll on the thriving social life I was cultivating (on Long Island…), but sacrifices had to be made. Naturally, I wanted to continue this lifestyle in college.

Fast-forward to first day freshmen year of college. I arrived a few weeks early for volleyball. The campus was nearly empty except for the fall season athletes and the weirdos going on an outdoor adventure trip (still REALLY jealous). I said sayonara to my family and headed to my first practice. The exhaustion that overwhelmed my body was suffocating.

Three weeks later, when the crippling soreness faded and my sight was restored, I saw that college was wonderful. The rest of the students arrived on campus and suddenly there was free stuff everywhere! T-shirts, posters, water bottles, tote bags, key chains, rape whistles, you name it! College was turning out to be great! I had a cafeteria that fed me, a custodial staff that refilled the toilet paper, a job as part of my financial aid package, and I had at least 20 friends within a 10-foot radius.

However, like my aching muscles, my excitement over these $52,000 free gifts faded as well. I thought that college was going to just hand me my independence – turns out I was going to have to find it on my own.

Fast-forward to first day freshman year of life. Independence bitch-slapped me in the face and then sucker-punched me in the gut. When discussing the transition from college to “the real world,” I like to compare it to a babysitter playing peek-a-boo with a baby (I’m the baby). This is no typical game of peek-a-boo though. When the babysitter pulls his/her hands back to playfully shout “Peek-a-boo” you, instead, see the devil’s head up in flames roaring at you saying “GET A JOB” and then you cry…you cry a lot.

There’s no free rape whistles here in the real world. There’s no cafeteria waiting to feed me, and there’s definitely no custodian waiting to refill the toilet paper in the bathroom. Living with two boys, I’ve found the toilet paper on top of the roll, underneath the roll, on top of the toilet, to the right of the toilet, or just not at all.  I maybe have 6 friends within 2 miles (including my dad and my step-mom), and finally, the real world definitely does not hand you a job just because you’re in need of financial aid.

These days, I’m rarely sore from exercise and free stuff isn’t being thrown my way. So pretty much, the real world is starting off the exact opposite of how college did. With that, I can only assume that like college, adult life will too balance out. Rather than having an anxiety attack over the overwhelming amount of independence I now have, I’m either going to take on more responsibility or just say fuck it and travel. Who knows? Probably fuck it and travel though.

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Potty-Training

WARNING: For those of you happy with what you accomplished in college and are thusly content with your life now, don’t read this and I hate you*.

* Just kidding**

** No, I’m not

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I had an interview about two months ago with the Head of Strategy at a big-ass advertising agency. Granted, it was an informational interview, but an interview nonetheless. He asked the first go-to interview question, “So tell me about yourself,” so I did. Then we got into a discourse about what his role was at the company, what he looks for in an employee, blah blah, and then he asked, “so tell me about your group of friends.” I held myself back from a witty quip like “oh, am I boring you” or something like that, but I kept it professional. So I said, “Well, my best friend is about to travel to South Sudan to help facilitate mediations with the Sudanese. She moved here from Bosnia when she was 13 – genocide refugee – learned her English from Boy Meets World – pretty average person overall. My other friend is a former circus performer (contortionist), and is now a phenom hula-hooper. My other best friend is doing cancer research at Harvard – also average.” I think this was the first time I’ve had to describe my friends like that. This “exercise” triggered a profound thought, “I’m so fucking average.”

I was an average college student. Sure, I played collegiate-level volleyball all four years, but I never did anything truly resume-worthy. I guess I didn’t really know what college, especially my college, was for. I didn’t know that college was a place to apply for grants and attempt to save the world from evil dictators or soft drinks. If I did know that college was for all of that, no, I probably still would not have applied for grants, because I’m not really a “save the world” kind of person. Maybe I would have tried to go on an excavation in Madagascar or Egypt to find fossils or tombs, but I digress. For the past several months, it seemed as though I just went through college without doing something extraordinary. I guess college seemed like a big waste. Looking back at myself looking back on college, it was not a waste. I surrounded myself with brilliant, funny, worldly, creative thinkers who continue to make me better. I also got to live in the great state of Minnesota for four years which made me appreciate temperatures above zero degrees. For real though, if you’re like me, or like the me of the last several months, thinking college was pretty much a wash, you’re wrong…or you’re not. I don’t know you so I can’t really make that call.

I didn’t do something in college like travel to Dakar or discover a new species of dinosaur, I’m thinking that my twenties can be the time to do that. I have friends that are the farthest people from average, and that is something I will continue to embrace. Sure, I need to focus on the baby steps first like getting a real person job and being financially stable – all right, maybe those are a little bigger than baby steps. Let’s call it potty-training. I need to focus on getting potty-trained and wiping my butt, before I can pull up my pants and do something I’m truly proud of. I can talk about how great my group of friends are until I’m blue in the face, but I want to brag about myself in an interview without lying.

Although I’m a toddler as far as being a twenty-something goes, I’m learning that just because college is over, the opportunity for adventure is not. I’m freaking twenty-two years old! Life is only just beginning now.

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Better Watch Out

I graduated from a small liberal arts college (Macalester, St. Paul), or as my Uncle likes to put it, I “graduated with a degree in nothing,” or as my grandpa likes to put it, “you’re now unemployed.” Well, gentlemen, hate to rain on your parades, but like I mentioned in my previous post, I’m a waitress AND an unpaid intern so I’m double employed. Jokes on you suckas! Womp.

hh

Seriously though, it could be worse. I could be living with my mom, in Arizona, not paying rent, and soaking up the sun with my dogs. Crap. Take two. It could be worse, I could be working at an advertising agency in Minnesota, surrounded by nice people and not to mention my friends. Damn it. Take three. It could be worse, I could be a Jets fan.

Anyhow, I have decided that I will no longer feel bad for myself, but rather I will embrace any shred of goodness I have and use any shitty situation or person that gets in my way as an opportunity to work on my kickboxing skills and voodoo doll collection. 2013, I’m coming for ya!

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