July 19, 2010

How do you measure success?

Is it in your professional or personal life, or a hybrid of both, or somewhere else? Is it something you have already achieved and are satisfied, or something you chase after? Do you think it will just land in your lap one day? My bestie and I were chatting the other day about this topic and our conversation got me thinking, what is success? It’s different for all of us because we are all so different.

I feel rather unsuccessful, but that is because I view success almost exclusively in a professional manner. I put myself through college for marketing, never intending to stay in this college town, I even told V that when we started dating…the day we started dating. But then we got engaged (about 3 years later) and his family had become so important to me, I started thinking about when we would have children, I would want them raised close to V’s family. So we stayed, I considered it my sacrifice. V never asked me to, and to this day tells me if I want to leave we can, but I can't. I love his family and want to be close to them, and I’ve fallen more in love with this college town. We have a love-hate relationship for sure. It’s hard to make a life here, anyone will tell you that, LOTS of college kids fall in love with this place and don’t leave thus the going wage is well below the cost of living. It’s difficult to own a home here because the average income is $30k/yr and the average cost of a home is ~ $2o0k (well that is more like starting price on a 900 square foot bare essentials home). It feels like no one really respects college educations here, especially in marketing, they expect you to sell things….no I want to work on your brand and your imagine in the community and that will make your product sell! For a good sized town (when I referenced wikipedia in 2006 we were about 65k people so I'd bet we are more like 75-80k now) we still act like we are more like 2k peeps, people here think word-of-mouth is ALL you need in terms of “marketing”. Sigh. It’s so frustrating, I love marketing. I would LOVE to work in Public Relations but that doesn’t really exist here. Sorry, now I'm just whining.

Don’t miss-read me here, I am happy in my marriage, clearly V and I have a great time together enjoying life here. But I feel compelled to be the bread winner, to provide for my family, and I don’t feel like I can here. I am I’m working as an *gulp, I hate admitting this out loud* Administrative Assistant. Please do not take offense if this is your work position, I am merely saying I put myself through college for 5 long, expensive and stressful years and I truly believed I would have a marketing career. I want so much to own a home.

My bestie was surprised when I told her I feel unsuccessful here, she said “you have a job” which yes I do but I am well over qualified for it, I SHOULD have a job. I know the market is horrible but it’s nothing new to this town, it’s usually horrible, there are always too many over qualified candidates for any given job. I guess I’m struggling to accept that this is success, having a job with benefits (thank the lord for that). I guess for so long I pictured my life differently. I don’t know how or if I can achieve what I had wanted here.

So I guess I am looking for inspiration, where do you see success in your life?

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