Monday, October 04, 2010

Being driven

A few months ago I was at a work “retreat day” that involved some interactive group activities. One of those was to take five post-it notes and write on each one a word that described yourself and a sixth post-it had your name on it. There were four people in each group, so that totaled 24 post-it’s. Each group scattered their post-it’s across an area of the wall and then as a group, you worked together to try and figure out which descriptive words matched which person, and you moved those post-it’s under their name. Not all the words made it under the right names though. After that, each of the five groups took turns cruising by the areas where all the other post-it’s were, and rearranged the words based upon what they believe described each individual in the group whose post-it’s were on that section of the wall. Once each group had a turn to rearrange the words, each person went up and put their words under their name and you got to see how people described themselves and how you saw them. It was an interesting exercise and we all got to learn things about our coworkers that we might never have known.

I can’t remember all of my words; however, one of them was “driven.”

Monday and Tuesday nights I went out after work to do what I consider very interesting things. Monday it was “Monday Night Magic” in the West Village with my good friend Mike. Mike and I have been Internet friends for years, first having met on My Space and then moving over to Facebook. We share the same birthday and decided it was time to finally meet. I had a great time....the magic show was wonderful and Mike’s company was as well. Tuesday night I was at the Hayden Planetarium for a show on the Autumn sky. Last week I went to see a documentary at the Museum of Jewish History about Dr. Eric Kandel, where he signed my copy of his book. Now that fall is here, I’m back to looking for things that I really enjoy doing and I’m doing them.

So, back to the word “driven.” I was rushing out the door from work tonight to go to another one of my geek events when my boss happened by. As I was explaining I was having a busy week “after work wise,” she commented that when she originally saw that I had described myself as driven, she didn’t really see me that way....but given my interests and my focus on pursuing them, maybe I was......driven.

I've been thinking about describing myself as "driven." I think when people hear that word, they think more along the lines of "career driven." In my case that is not the kind of driven I am. What I am, is driven to have the kind of life I want. Career wise, I ended up where I am by accident. I wasn't aiming to ever be an administrator and loved being a case manager.....but, being a case manager was not going to allow me to have the sort of life I feel compelled to, here I am. I'm happy not being a case manager anymore and love what I'm doing, but most importantly, because it allows me to be able to afford to live in the greatest city in the world and to do all those things that interest me. Maybe "driven" isn't exactly the word I should use now that I think about it....perhaps it's more like "single-minded" (or according to Harry, “laser focused”) in regard to what I want for myself.