The Joy Project

Little Moments of Big Love

Category: Earning a wage

Kid President

“Two roads diverged in a wood, and I took the one less travelled, AND IT HURT, MAN!”

On of my favorite shows, The Office,  is ending this season after nine years on the air. I saw an interview with one of the main actors, Rainn Wilson, and he talked about how sad he was to be ending this chapter in his life, but how excited to he was to try new things, and be known for something different. It really made me think twice about how bummed I had been to leave a job that really defined me. I’m so scared to put myself back out there; what if people don’t like the new version of me? What if I fail? What if it’s boring?  But I can’t imagine how scary it would be if everyone in the whole world knew me as that character on TV, and then to go try to do something new. Thank goodness I’m not Phoebe on Friends or Dr. McDreamy on Grey’s Anatomy, or Alf on that show Alf. I get the luxury to redefine myself, however I want (as long as I can still pay my mortgage).

Anyhoo, Rainn Wilson, the guy from The Office, decided to take this opportunity to start a new project called, a website dedicated to thinking about life’s Big Questions, and also bring more Joy to the world. It’s right up my alley. One of my favorite parts of Soul Pancake is a series of videos called Kid President, that are inspiring and funny. I love this! Rainn could have been sad that his tv show and way of life was ending, but instead he’s trying something new, putting himself out there, bringing joy to the universe.

Here is one of my favorite videos by Kid President, called A Pep Talk. I dedicate it to you:


It is yet another reminder that we were made to be Awesome. Let’s get out there! I know what it feels like to get stuck, to waste days, to wonder where January went, or the last year. If we keep waiting till we’re thinner, or richer, or we get that job or that boyfriend, or it’s easier or we’re not sick or our lives calm down, we’re wasting our days. “The world needs you to stop being boring.”

So go do something Awesome today!

PS: Watch the other Kid President videos. They are the BEST!


One Week And Counting…




I have officially been unemployed for one week.

I’m surprisingly mostly great so far (minus the part where I drank one glass of wine too many at my work going-away party and then came home, took my pants off in the living room and ate a hot dog while sobbing; that was just weird, but I’m hoping it was a one-time-deal).

I haven’t made any big decisions about my life yet, and so far I haven’t had any giant revelations.

But I have had lots of time to be quiet and think and it’s funny what has bubbled up:

1.  I am going to stop saying I’m “unemployed” and instead refer to it as my “career-change-a-palooza” or “seeking divine career intervention”. I’d say “life change” but that makes me sound like I am going through menopause. I’m also going to stop saying “I don’t have any money” or “I’m not making any money”  because then the universe won’t send me more money. But if we’re out together and I say “oh, no let me get the check, I am totally flush with cash”, it’s only because I am thinking positively and you can still pay for my wine.

2. I thought I would be afraid of the unknown of being unemployed. Turns out the thing I fear most is getting offered another office job. I want to work from home, or work from Mexico, or only work half the year, or work 12 hours a day because I’m so inspired, and write and create, and run and cook. I’m scared someone is going to offer me a really great office job and I’ll feel guilty if I decline it, and sad if I take it.

3. The dirty workout clothes in my hamper finally out number the business lady pants! Hooray for no more “business casual”!

4. I need a guru. Or a mentor. My own personal Oprah. I have no idea how to stop mid-stream and swim in another career direction. Who are the gutsy women who can show me the way?

5. Batteries…they’re weird, right? Also, what’s the deal with fax machines? You put paper in a machine and then it sends the message to another piece of paper OVER THE PHONE? That’s crazy. (I had to change the batteries in my mouse and that got me to thinking. It might also be a sign that I have too much free time.)

6. The universe is pretty fantastic. And it’s all connected. I’m certain it will take care of me if I just let it.



Yes, You.












Good Sportsmanship

As you know, I was recently laid off from my long-time, dream-job, job. But it isn’t effective until January, so every day I put on my work lady pants and I go to the office and I work and I work and I smile and I turn in the spreadsheet and I wrap up all the details and I smile and I work. Occasionally I stay home in my bathrobe and watch internet TV but mostly I work and I smile.

Several of my co-workers have commented on how graceful and productive I have remained despite having been kicked in the emotional groin, and they ask me how I do it.

I wish I could say “my faith” or “my belief that everything happens for a reason”, or even “my excellent upbringing”.

But really it’s that TV show “The Voice”.

Yes, I watch it. And I love it. And every week the show features these beautiful young creatures who have left it all behind to give singing a shot, and they’ve sung their hearts out on stage and told the whole world how their father’s always wanted them to be an accountant but they chose singing instead or how their mothers work three jobs just so that they could have singing lessons or how singing literally saved their lives from some sad fatal disease. And after all that, the beautiful young creatures have to stand up on the stage and bite their lips and twist their hands and cast their eyes downward and wait to hear if America has voted to let them stay.

And then BOOM. They get voted off the show. IN FRONT OF ALL OF AMERICA. AND CHRISTINA AGUILERA.

And then the host asks if they have any last words. Sometimes they cry or worse, get angry.

But a lot of the times they just say how grateful they are for the experience. They say how this isn’t the end of the road for them. They are gonna keep singing! They say “Thank you America!”

That’s how I learned to be grateful in the face of defeat. I’ve been voted off the proverbial work island, but when I leave, I want people to think “That girl is one classy broad. She’s gonna be just fine.”

Also helpful, are all my years playing as a child on really terrible soccer teams. We mostly always lost, but no matter what, win or lose, our coach always made us walk over to the other team, shake hands with each of our competitors and say “Good game, good game.” Even when I got pelted in the face with direct kick I still had to say “good game.”

At work, most days lately I feel like this on the inside:

But I just think of Christina Aguilera and mutter “good game, good game” to myself and I look like a graceful swan on the outside.

There Is A Point To This Story

Hey guess what? I am quirky! Which was horribly painful in middle school, and continues to be so in most work meetings.

But lately nerd culture is “in”.  With the rise of Tina Fey, being a frizzy-haired woman with awkward hands and a big imagination is suddenly cool! Well, maybe not cool, but at least respected. Well, maybe not respected, but at least part of the zeitgeist. Wait, did I just say “zeitgeist”? Ya I did. I’m trendy, people, deal with it.

Seriously though, about a year ago, Zooey Deschanel brought her TV show “New Girl” to Fox. I personally don’t have TV, and watch most shows on the internet at my computer, with my cat. Which typically means I am way out of the loop on what’s current in TV land. For example, I just finished watching that show “24”. You try name-dropping “Jack Bauer” at lunch in 2012 and see how many crickets you hear–it definitely doesn’t help my quirky status.

As Zooey’s show grew in popularity, more and more people started commenting on the similarities between she and I. I like her, but I was really starting to get sick of being called “adorkable” (a mixture of adorable and dorky) by the accounting guy everytime I turned in my time card.

So I decided to check out the show. I think it’s great. The characters are well written, her character is vulnerable and trusting, the plots are funny and she made wearing glasses hot. Plus she plays a teacher who really cares about her students, which I think is cool and important. I’ll happily take any comparisons between Zooey and myself, especially if it means “‘being yourself” is now mainstream (don’t worry, I’m still the weirdest person in my office).

And then the show went on summer hiatus, and I continued being adorkable on my own.

Fast forward to a few weeks ago. My co-workers started asking “had I seen the season 2 of the New Girl yet”?  No I hadn’t, because I was busy catching up on this awesome new show I just discovered called “Lost”; what’s up with that polar bear?

When I finally got some free time I sat down at my computer and watched the opening episode.

Here’s a scene (you must watch this clip. It is integral to the story and I am not going to tell you what happens)

And then, the next week, I was abruptly laid off too.

Yep. Like some cute harbinger of unemployment, I watched Zooey get laid off, and then I got served my own walking papers.

It sucks and my feelings are hurt, and I am sure you will hear more about it in the weeks to come. But at least I get a whole season of watching my silly and funny doppelgänger go through the same ups and downs that I’ll face.

Seriously though, she better not find another job before me.

The whole episode is funny. You should watch it:

Me Talk Pretty

I have been seriously overdosing on the allergy pills lately.  And still my eyeballs feel like I rolled them in tiny blades of grass and then set fire to them.

What the pills give in lack of snot, they take in words and clarity.  Several times I’ve been on the phone for work and completely forgotten English.

ME:  “So by becoming a volunteer, you’ll be helping the, uhhhh, umm, uhhh, you know, the little people in schools, uhh what’s the word?”

VOLUNTEER: “The children?”

ME: “Yes, that’s right. The children. You’ll be uh, with the children, doing stuff, and uh it will be good. And stuff.”


And now I am flying to our nation’s capital to present to my peers about my life’s work and my head is so foggy that I am just hoping I’ve remembered to pack pants.  I don’t want to be the presenter who most resembles a stoned Donald Duck.

All this has made me realize all the tiny synapses that I take for granted.

So today, I am thankful for my normally functioning brain and my general command of the English language.  May it return to me one day soon.

Dream Job

Happy Monday Everyone!  Hope it’s a successful one!



I Can’t Wait to Cook


Here’s what I’m feeling today:


from Pottery Barn


And also some of this:

from Oh Captain


Have a nice night.

PS: I just gave that chalkboard a closer look.  And it costs $99.00 American Dollars.


For reals?

Pay me $25.00 and a back rub and I will come over  RIGHT NOW and spray paint the crap out of a kitchen chalkboard for you. I’m not  even kidding.  I’ve already changed back out of my pjs and I’m on my way.




More for the swirly twirly

This is how I feel today:

From: We heart it

Also, I was feeling angry and sad at work this morning.

And then the building caught on fire and we all had to go home.

Thankfully no one was hurt.  But I am worried I might be a little bit Firestarter-Drew Barrymore, or someone from Heroes.  I’m going to go lay down and try not burn stuff with my immense power.

Advice for the swirly twirly

I have been all in a twitter lately trying to figure what to do with my life.  It’s annoying.

I saw this today.  It helped a little.

Insulate yourself…

from anonymous angry people

Expose yourself to art you don’t yet understand

Precisely measure the results that are important to you

Stay blind to the metrics that don’t matter

Fail often


Lead, don’t manage so much

Seek out uncomfortable situations

Make an impact on the people who matter to you

Be better at your baseline skills than anyone else

Copyedit less, invent more

Give more speeches

Ignore unsolicited advice

-From Seth Godin

%d bloggers like this: