I’m Doing My Level Best Right Now.






Life is complicated right now. I have been overwhelmed by it all .. and I’ve been frozen with fear and anxiety. The top anxiety producers are:

  1. Resigning from my job. It could have been a great job.  It wasn’t – made horrible by a terrible manager and consistently bad experiences .. I call it a death by a 1000 cuts.  I know I’m not alone here – check this out – Why I Quit My Job by Life of Kai.  This is my experience so eloquently written.  I do not mean to diminish Kai’s experience as a PoC, or to diminish that the Ad Industry needs an upgrade.  But this story is my story too (I’m a white woman working in Tech).  Terrible managers and the leadership teams that support them exist in all industries.  It truly is death by a 1000 cuts (politically correct terminology is micro-aggressions).   I just wished I had the strength this woman had to recognize the problem as not mine and resign earlier.  I would have more confidence at this point and have spent less time trying to improve a impossible situation.
  2. Risking My Retirement.  Given #1 above,  I have to support myself. So I decided to sell my #1 asset – my California property.  It is my largest asset.. and I’m selling it 20 years prior to retirement.  Am I crazy?  Yes.  It feels like crazytown right now given the stock market, political landscape, and the uncertainty of the midterms.  Yes, I have a 401K and an IRA (I’ve been saving since I started my career at 24), but those haven’t grown in value nearly as much or as quickly as real estate in CA.  So in order to support myself while I look for another job, I need to sell this asset.  It hasn’t been easy to unload an expensive house in a volatile market.
  3. Planning/managing a home remodel.  I’ve been living in a shit hole. I purchased a house a year ago in as-is condition. It was a rental for 28 years before I purchased it. Everything is in original/terrible condition.  Why did I buy it? Because it was close – 4 blocks – from the family I love.  My living condition has gotten the better of me and I just cannot live like this anymore. Given the current market, finding a contractor is challenging… I finally found one.. and he is available Nov. 15th.   Yeah me!!   But #1 was unplanned and #2 has been challenging, making me stress out about the $$ I’m spending on the remodel (Yes, I put a deposit down… I need this change for my sanity)..

Yes,  I am very aware that these are all self-inflicted wounds.  On top of causing my own trouble, I obsess about being poor, not having a roof over my head, and eating cat food to survive.  What can I say, when you grow up poor, these things never leave you… I wake up physically sick every morning.  I have nightmares about working at Walmart and eating cat food to survive in my old age..  The anxiety is overwhelming.

Given all of this, I struggle every day to get anything done.  And as a Type A person that likes to get shit done, I am mortified by my state.  I literally cannot make myself do what I know needs to be done.  I am doing my best to not let it get to me and to overcome it.  I am embarrassed to share my goals with you at this time as they are tiny… but they do get me out of bed and accomplishing something each day.

Here are a few things that motivate me:

  • Daily emails from Inspire More.  I read these emails every morning and it let’s me know that a) there are good people in this world, and b) I can be one of them with a small, kind gesture.
  • Positive Interactions with Others.  Anytime I go out of my house, I focus on having positive interactions with others. No matter where I am or what I’m doing, I am hyper aware of my interactions with others and do what I can to make it positive for the other person.
  • Make a difference.  I do my best to make a difference in every life I touch.  I see others doing this and it makes me happy. I don’t care what it is, if someone has passion to help others and make a positive impact on others, I’m all for it.  For me, its a small action – smiling and saying hi, listening to someone who wants to share there story, or showing appreciation for the help/kindness of others (Home Depot you are the best!!).  The kindnesses I am watching now are:
    • Marc Benioff’s effort to help the homeless.  Hands down we need more Marc Benioff’s.  I have traveled a lot internationally, and the USA is the only country that doesn’t take care of their own… makes me sad. I see how other countries take care of their people. And we, the USA, richest country in the world, do not make it priority to take care of our own peeps.  It hurts me deeply.
    • Kathrine Zellner , Laura Nirider, Alison Claytonand any/all involved with Innocence Projects. Wow, there are a lot of innocent people serving time.  Can you imaging if this was you?  The more I research this, the scarier it is for the the innocent. I have a cousin in prison, serving a life sentence, for a murder she didn’t commit.  I’ll write more about this in a future post, but the justice system is not kind to the innocent.
    • For the Love of Farm Animals.  Why people on this planet that hurt animals is a mystery to me.  I am the person who saves spiders..  I can’t help it.  I imagine their families missing them…  and they do eat misquotes.. What does it hurt to guide them back to the great outdoors?  But what about those awesome animals bred for our food?  I have fallen in love with Esther the Wonder Pig and her friends..  I’m hard pressed to eat pork and turkey at this point in my life.  It’s easy to make a difference – only purchase food from humane farms, donate and save an animal or two, or visit a farm sanctuary near you

A very long, rambling post… yes I’m drinking wine…    I’ll do my best to write more consistently.  🙂

If you have made it this far, then you have probably been in a similar place.  Please let me know how you have gotten over your life challenges, how you get out of your own way, and the path that ultimately set you free..


5 thoughts on “I’m Doing My Level Best Right Now.

  1. Grey Goose, Dirty October 29, 2018 / 9:03 am

    Oh Paula, I’m so sorry. I completely get it. I went through the same thing at the beginning of the year and I went a tad bit crazy because of it. It’s tough for Type A people to feel as if they have no plan. Or worse yet, to feel like they aren’t following/accomplishing that plan. You DO have a plan, though. And you’re following it. It’s just a different one than you’re used to. It doesn’t involve budgeting or career goals. It’s to be happy! You know that whatever happens, you will land on your feet. It’s easier said than done to try to release your old mindset and embrace a new, more esoteric one, but I know you can do it. If I could, anyone can. You’ve got this!! 💗


  2. Single Dad October 28, 2018 / 10:00 pm

    Hey there,

    Whether it’s a crappy IT working environment (been there, got the badges when I was basically a serf until I had a Green Card), or anywhere else, it’s draining. And, this may come as a surprise to our younger readers, working for a living is highly correlated with future wealth. So that’s a double-whammy right there.

    Getting some work done on the house is a double plus. Getting something done and getting squeaky clean working new stuff all at once. Yee-haw!

    Still got my personalized email address? Say hello.


    • PaulasPonderings October 29, 2018 / 12:34 am

      Omg, your back! I was just at your blog, looking for words of wisdom….unless you have a new site I’m unaware of, it’s been a while for you. How are you?? Send me your email again … i can be reached at paulasponderings@gmail.com. Xoxo


  3. Herald Spain October 28, 2018 / 8:30 pm

    Well you have been trying to hold the cork in he Champaign botttle. Scared of splashing the guests or on your back dress? No matter the flood gates are open and tank goodness. I will make a note that I needed to print a copy of your post so that all the details were not overlooked by accident.

    In no particuar order, the California property is an asset nut as a wise old general once said having 1000 bowmen in England does you little when fighting in France. If you do not intend to have a home in California then owneing property there is a worry more than a asset.

    You can only make decisions about property from the “now” perspective. The future, is well UNCERTAIN! Don’t get to what ifing it, you made your choice now work the problem.

    Second, you need to write a book or blog (ha ha) about how fucking terrible high tech work is. The cole mines are starting to sound apealting the way you tell it. Is it the classic those in charge make fucked up rules so they stay in charge? Or is it that no body wants to rock a boat even if it is taking on water? Either way you have cast off and are swimming to a new island. God’s speed!

    As for a remodel, well construction is a organised chaos, that you are paying for. Have a plan and stick to it, no one else will. Try to trust your contactor and remember you are paying for everything so be a hard ass when nessesery. If my advise here was any thinner a celebrity would be wearing it.

    As to making a differance, just try and have a random conversation with a stranger once n a wile and hopefully you can each walk away thinking “hell the world is not totally shit”, That works for me for now. Don’t cut people off in traffic and laugh at everything you can. Sounds like utopia!

    I will leave the rest of your post for another day. Just be well Herald Spain


    • PaulasPonderings October 29, 2018 / 12:36 am

      I love you Harold and will reply in depth in the next few days.xoxoxo


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