Anyone who knows me well (or online for that matter) will tell you that I have done a lot of soul-searching in the last year. In fact, my life has taken a 360 from 365 days ago. More than ever before I needed the last 2 months to reflect on what has happened in the last 28 years.
And I have learned a lot about myself. Some things were scary, some surprising, and some were just “well duh.”
- Autonomy as a concept defines me. I have a real problem with forced fun, micromanagement, bureaucratic red tape, and politics.
- I am my toughest critic and can be my own worst enemy as a result
- Volunteering is my biggest passion and the one I most often mis-prioritize
- I thrive on helping move things forward and cleaning up messy things
- I need constant challenge in my life
- The inside of my head is somewhere between a pinball and ping pong game – depending on the day
- I am a drama queen. Yep. I said it.
- I can be in love with my life, and I am in control of it all.
And after all the questioning, admittance, toddler moments, toil and swirl — my head is now finally clear of clouds.
I have landed in New York City, the place where some people’s dreams come true and other’s dreams come to die.
When I decided to move here this winter, it didn’t take long for the anxiety to set in. How does one follow up their “dream job”? Furthermore, how does someone sit with the fact that they left a career-making job for a life-changing leap? How do I keep my anxiety from making me do something “stable” as opposed to something “awesome.”
So I turned to my sharpies and I started to write down what I would need to make a “dream life” post-leap.
And I decided that my dream is to have:
- A tiny hole to call my own, preferably with a kitchen that one can cook in
- Autonomous workload and management of my work product
- Challenging assignments
- Support for my outside interests in volunteering and mentoring
- Awesome co-workers, peers and clients.
- A real work-life balance
Turns out that once I wrote all that down, it didn’t take long for my new dream life to find me.
The Understanding Group
I first met Dan Klyn at a karaoke party I was hosting at the Information Architecture Summit in 2010. Dan later took interest in joining my volunteer efforts in producing IDEA 2010 and we became fast cohorts when he accepted the role of associate producer for the event. I don’t think a week has passed in the year since we met that we haven’t had contact. His sage advice has talked me off a lot of ledges.
Earlier this spring Dan approached me with an idea. “When you move to NYC, you should work with the company we just started.”
Just like that.
So I have been spending this summer working with Dan and the other team members at The Understanding Group getting things up and running. With some exciting work lined up already this summer, I can’t wait to share more as TUG decides what it is going to be when it grows up.
The Information Architecture Summit
I met Jess McMullin while in tears at the IA Summit in 2009 (long story)
I remember the first thing he did was hand me a tissue and give me a hug. That is a guy you don’t forget and you value immediately as a friend. So when Jess reached out to ask me to help out with the IA summit this year, I jumped at the chance.
So after almost 6 months off from the world of conference organization, I have accepted the position of Executive Producer for the IA Summit 2012, to be held this coming March in New Orleans.
I am excited to apply my past experience, shake some things up in the ranks and work with the amazing team we are starting to build.
How’s it going so far?
I wake up everyday excited to be here. I go to bed everyday exhausted from life. I have made great friends and fell in love all over again with others.
Oh and yes, I even found a tiny hole with a kitchen I can cook in.