Thank You for Sharing

I’m not a fan of TED Talks. What’s the point of recruiting interesting people who are experts in their field – who have highly detailed and specialized knowledge gleaned from years of intensive study – if you are going to impose an 18-minute time limit that forces them to generalize to the point of meaninglessness? No introvert thought that up, that’s for sure!

I’m similarly unenthused about “Big 5” personality trait theory, the extrovert bias of which I have ranted about elsewhere. I mention it only because one of the Big 5 traits is “agreeableness,” which is probably the inspiration for the same-named trait mentioned in this TED Talk.

Give and Take

Yes, this post is about a TED Talk, by organizational psychologist Adam Grant. Despite my skepticism about the format, his discussion of workplace sharing styles and how they relate to productivity and career success is highly relevant to my own experience.

Grant defines the sharing styles as taker, giver, and matcher. About a quarter of people are givers, a sixth are takers, and the rest are matchers. It’s interesting that a substantial majority are matchers. I’m betting most people think only in terms of givers and takers.

Go on, watch it. I can wait. You’ll love the part about the Canadian national slogan – so HSP! Continue reading

SensitiveType on Facebook

My brain is abuzz with all of the things I read and see that I want to share with you. The backlog is getting too huge to ever catch up, though, so I set up a Facebook page where I can post things that don’t make it into a SensitiveType blog post. Check it out (there’s also a link in the right sidebar).
A screenshot of the SensitiveType Facebook page

Life is Weird

So, after two months of no activity whatsoever in my newly chosen career, I suddenly have two clients this week, and both seem promising – that is, both will be good to work with, and need ongoing services.

This is also a week when I’m completing a project that put me in a highly stressful construction environment for the past few months. With the jackhammers shaking the building, and constant voices of workers shouting to each other over the racket day and night, I’ve felt like I was in a war zone.

It’s great to get away from that, but there are endless closing details to manage. If I could, I’d have chosen to do nothing else this week. Instead, I’m doing everything else! I wasn’t sure I could, but I am.
Busy woman at desk with 5 arms, typing, filing, and answering the phone all at the same time
And that’s a general theme of my life lately. I’m scrambling to keep up all the time. Continue reading

Turn, Turn, Turn

A Graph showing a sharp dropMuch has happened since I last posted. My first month in my new consulting career was pretty good. My second month was slower, but I figured there would be ups and downs at the beginning. However, when I had zero clients in month three, I realized I’d drastically overestimated demand, or else drastically underestimated how much promotion I’d need to do. Before I had time to figure out which, my tottering finances crashed. Continue reading

Call Louder, Won’t You?

A photo showing the ears of a horse, pricked up as if listening to some soundAs regular followers of Sensitive Type will know, I’ve been struggling for a long time to find a path that worked for me. Along the way, I followed a bunch of blogs about making a living online and/or by blogging. For awhile, I did a lot of reading. Sometimes I wondered whether it was a good investment of my time, especially with the financial wolves howling at my door.

It seems like I only use about 1/10th of what I’ve read, but since I’m forging my path in introverted solitude, it’s worth all that less-useful reading when I find something that affirms my own experience. The post below is an example:

The Complicated But Beautiful Process of Finding Your Calling

While I agree 100% with the title of this post, my perspective differs from the author’s on several points. First, he doesn’t mention luck, which IMHO plays a huge role in the success of any endeavor. After reading numerous success stories, I noticed how often fortuitous timing was a major factor, a point not always noted by the writers themselves.

Aha!? Uh-uh.

Secondly, aha moments are over-rated. Even if you have one, the story doesn’t end there. I’ve had many. Continue reading

By George, I think she’s got it!

3 years ago, I sat down in the middle of my life and refused to budge until I figured out why it wasn’t working.

I have learned a lot about myself since then.

I have learned that I am an introvert
(“No way!”
“Way!”)

I have learned that I’m an HSP, and what that is. These days, I think of myself as a “deep engager.” I’m not sure how much of that is introvert, how much is HSPS, and how much is my unique personality, but wherever it comes from, it’s a good description.

These days, I think of myself as a “deep engager.”

This improved self-understanding has allowed me to acknowledge without shame or apology that the following characteristics in a job make me miserable:

Continue reading

In which, I am inspired at last

closeup of a lit lightbulbGood news! I finally hit on something I already have skill in, that I can set up a consulting shingle for immediately. I had my first client yesterday. I was able to solve all of her problems. She was thrilled, and already wants to schedule another appointment for additional consulting.

I never considered consulting on this topic as a profession before because it’s a deep, deep topic, and my knowledge level is intermediate at best. However, as many, many of the create-your-own-worklife blogs I’ve been reading point out, you don’t need to know everything, you only need to know more than your client. I had forgotten how I struggled with the same knowledge when it was all new to me, how arcane and incomprehensible it all seemed. And being both a midwesterner by birth, and a woman, I am the last to see my own expertise in anything.

I am pretty excited, as money is coming in immediately (and not a moment too soon).
Continue reading