Wednesday, March 30, 2016

Online vs Face-To-Face

In two important areas of my life currently this is the everyday battle I continue to think about and deal with. Online dating and online job applications. Both of which I am told would be more successful if I had face-to-face conversations. Is this true? What are you thoughts? I am interested to know?

Friends and family have shared success stories from online dating to marriages. Others have been cat-fished.

I have heard of success stories from candidates that applied for a job online and then proceeded to interview and be offered the position. Know contacts known, doors opened, etc.

What works for some may not work for others; however having an open mind is something that we should all strive for. I know sometimes for me I am discouraged one day and another my inbox is full of likes, winks, and sometimes messages.

My email box this week was full of rejection emails most likely because my resume didn't pass through ATS. And then there was one response for a phone interview today for a job that really excites me. Remember it only takes one to say yes. Kiss plenty of frogs until you find your prince charming. Fill out plenty of applications until you hear back. Network with your connections and hopefully someone will set you up for an interview.

I was recently talking in depth with a friend who I haven't seen or spoken to in a while and he mentioned that in some ways, cat-fishing and ATS are similar. I asked how, I was confused by his statement. The conversation went on explaining that you fabricate who you are on dating sites, Facebook, etc and that the same can go when creating a resume for a certain job just to beat the ATS system. You have now fooled the person on the other end in both situations. After talking more about it I realized he had a point. I hadn't looked at the situation like he had. I hadn't experienced things he has over the past few years. What I did learn was we have something to offer and if we are true to ourselves it will shine through in both areas of life, dating and job search.

I do believe there are so many benefits to social media, online dating, and networking; however I also know that a Face-To-Face conversation is just as important and sometimes even more. Put down the phone. Shut off the computer. Meet for coffee or a craft beer. Say hi to the barista serving you your morning beverage.

You don't have to get drunk. You do have to have a conversation. 

What are your thoughts?


Monday, March 28, 2016

Let's Talk.....Wonderful Weekend!

My weekend may have started on Thursday, as my dad was off for Purim, yes you get the Jewish Holidays off when you work the company he is employed at. My dad, sister and I enjoyed a quick lunch followed by an afternoon of bowling. It was so great to spend time catching up and getting our a** kicked by him. Let's just say I never broke 100. The highest I came was 79. I am not, nor will I ever be good at bowling.

These are my people and I am so very lucky! Hopefully our next activity together is more of a hike or maybe rafting. Ask my sister and she will never step foot in one. A story for another day.

Next up was a weekend filled with friends, brunch, and what I thought was one birthday celebration, except the surprise was on me for another birthday celebration a few days early! Friday night after arriving in NYC it was off to Lips, the ultimate in Drag Dining! If you know me I am up for anything and this was exactly the night out I needed! Filled with laughter, drinks, drags, and great company. I even made a friend, Don the birthday boy next to us! He was celebrating 51 while I am celebrating 29 on April 7th! My friend Helena and her mom, decided it would be a great early birthday celebration and they were right! Surprise!!!! Ginger, our waitress was a comedy act!

We crashed on Long Island for a few hours before round two of celebrations. This time we headed across the bridge to New Jersey to celebrate our twin friends 30th Birthday at Tiffany's. We all grew up together and went to sleep-away camp.  Since we were headed back to LI that night it was more low key! Good thing after the previous night's crazy antics. The only photo I took was of my bright pink lips and that was even out my comfort zone. So many comments, I guess I should add makeup to my routine a little more here and there.

This weekend reminded me that friends are always going to be there and love you for you. We all deserve a good weekend out here and there. I came home feeling exhausted, so much so that I drove to Target only to remember that it was Easter and they were closed. #Adulting #NeededRazors.

Ended the weekend with FaceTime with the lady below asking me to be a bridesmaid!! Of course I said yes!! She helped me survive living in Florida and is a wealth of life advice!

How was your weekend?


Friday, March 18, 2016

Let's Talk....Moving Forward

I flew home late Wednesday night from Florida on Frontier Airlines. To be completely honest they were two of the smoothest flights I have flown in a while. Yes, you pay for everything but my whole trip cost $108. That's what I spend sometimes in one night in NYC. If you are looking for an inexpensive last minute trip you should totally check them out. Most of my stay was spent on the beach and that is exactly what I needed. I came back feeling refreshed and ready to move forward. 

Before leaving for Florida I was in a funk. Not sure where I was headed or what I wanted I was feeling completely defeated. I didn't want to leave the house, see friends, hit the gym or do anything but sleep and lay around. Many days I forced myself out of the house to hit the gym and then Starbucks for a few hours. At 28 years old I never thought that is where I would be. I am also not the person who had a 5 year or 10 year plan. Thankfully I have some amazing family/friends and internet friends that remind me everyday that I am worth it. I have a strong outgoing personality and sometimes it's more than OK to have a bad day or two. Anything more than a week and I tend to spiral and need to come back. And that's why I am moving forward. 

Yesterday was a strong day followed by what looks to be an exciting weekend, minus the impending Nor'easter we are suppose to get hit with on the first day of spring, Sunday. The same with next weekend. I guess we will face the day when it arrives. Until then I am happy to be smiling, laughing and spending time with wonderful people. I look forward to making moves in my career as well. 

Guess what friends, or anyone who reads this post.......I started finally reading books on my Kindle that has been in hiding for the last two years. What do you recommend? I am interested in reading any and all genres expect Sci-Fi. Share with me what you are currently reading! 

Here are some of my faves this week:

1) "No is a Full Sentence" by one of my favorite fitness blogger, Theodora! We need to remember to take care of ourselves before others so we can be the best person we can be. I am a social person just like the next person when I feel it and always am saying yes. When sometimes we just need to say NO. 

2) Each of these 10 women have something that will be sure to inspire you. Who are the 10 most compelling women in Washington? I enjoyed reading and even did more research on Gina Adams as she really intrigued me. Check out The EveryGirl for some great resources! It's one of my go-to sites right now! 

3) Young Techies to join Hillel, in the world of Jewish Philanthropy. Exciting news for a standout organization. The potential in my honest opinion is endless! 

With that said, I will leave you with this which is exactly how I felt this morning and hope to feel moving forward! 


Tuesday, March 15, 2016

Beach Vacation

This view for the past week was everything I thought it would be: relaxing and rejuvenating. As the waves crashed on the shoreline I would stare out at the endless ocean just thinking. I opened my Kindle for the first time in over two years, and even finished three books in two days. Who am I? I guess I like to read at the beach. I checked in on Social Media here and there but did my best to just enjoy my surroundings and time with my family. My aunt was gifted me this trip as a birthday present and spending time with her and cousin was truly wonderful. 

The woman standing behind this sea turtle was the brains behind the design. Her husband who is not pictured spent close to 3 hours building this. Kids sat around anxiously awaiting to see what the final design would look like. He mentioned doing this because he could. It is his way to give back to this world and I think this is wonderful. His creativity inspired many little ones to build sand castles and even the adults got in on the fun. Great afternoon listening to him speak in more detail about how he enjoys the ocean and the building of different animals. 

Family is very important, especially when we are such a small family. Anytime we are together you can bet there is laughter, and plenty of crazy moments. We were lucky enough to have our cousin join us one night for a Mexican fiesta! I for one enjoyed my two margaritas! The guacamole was just OK. It had me missing Rocco's Tacos guacamole. 

And finally I was able to catch up with my co-worker and good friend who is getting married down here in August! She had a girls night at her apartment on Friday and then Monday the two of us hit the beach to walk in the early evening. The view is us driving back home but let me tell you, those two hours with her were just what I needed to get my act together. I needed her straight shooting and honesty to snap me out of what I am feeling. The anxiety, the depression, the feeling of failure, and the pressure I am putting on myself was consuming. Without even knowing I was spiraling quicker than I thought. Being unemployed is far from glamorous. For me, it is 100% stressful and my general anxiety sky rockets. Starting over is never easy as everyone will tell you. You have to start somewhere. I look forward to going home and getting my life back in order. This new chapter hasn't been written and I need to remember it's my chapter, not anyone else is. I have to do what is right for me. 

I started this vacation thinking I was going to have an "Ah-Ha" moment. ( See the picture below) What I have come to realize is that there is no one moment. I am human just like everyone else. I make mistakes. Nothing is perfect and I don't want perfect. I want to be the best Tracy I can be. I want to succeed at my own pace. 

Tonight is my last night and it is back to New Jersey tomorrow and I am ready. 


Tuesday, March 8, 2016

They Inspire Me....Who Inspires You?

Did you know today is #InternationalWomensDay? Will you celebrate today or take action? Check out their website and see how you can participate.

There are so many women out there that inspire, motivate, and encourage women. Each and everyone of them should be celebrated. We have to stand together. We need to stop spreading hate. We need to work together. Stop the online bullying. Leaving negative comments on posts you don't agree with is just down right disgusting. Yes, everyone is allowed to have an opinion. We can disagree with one another. That isn't what we are talking about. Every human being has feelings and emotions. Think before you write something. How would you feel if you were on the other side?

I am 28 years old turning 29 next month. I have no idea at this moment what I want to do with my life and that scares the heck out of me. It also stresses me out and I am constantly second guessing myself. Where is this going you are probably asking yourself. I will tell you where my point lies.

In the past few months I have walked around numb. I have hidden from friends and family. How can they help if I don't know what I want or how I can get there.

My point: These 3 women of inspired something in me when I wasn't sure what I was looking for. I still don't; however I am on the path to figuring out thanks to these women.

Sierra Barter is former classmate from Johnson & Wales University. Just read her Twitter Bio and tell me you aren't inspired. She is the co-founder of the Lady Project , and "organization that connects, inspires, and showcases amazing women doing awesome things all over."

Tuesday nights are for #MillennialTalk  hosted by Chelsea Krost. Chelsea is a TV and radio talk show host and millennial lifestyle expert and in my honest opinion one amazing, inspirational young woman. Anything you are looking for and she has it covered. Check out MillennialTalk tonight! It's one if the best twitter chats out there!

Detective Erin Lindsay on Chicago P.D. and Brooke Davis from One Tree Hill are two role model characters played by the inspiring Sophia Bush. From running a clothing empire in North Carolina to protecting the streets in Chicago she portrays such inspiration in both roles. Just read the activism tab on her Wikipedia.

Who inspires you? What inspires you? Share it. Spread the love and not the Hate.


Friday, March 4, 2016

Let's Talk....Friday Favorites

Any exciting plans this weekend? I am doing some spring cleaning and packing for my last minute vacation to Florida. I need this trip to unplug, clear my head, get some good runs in and do some major reading on the beach. I will take a break from sending out resumes and applications. Speaking of beach, I thought we were headed in the right direction this week with spring like temperatures until I woke up this morning. Lets just say I wasn't pleased to this picture I took when I looked out the front door. This is NOT a Friday favorite.

OK, enough with the snow lets chat about some of my favorites from this week!

1) I recently stumbled upon Smart, Pretty and Awkward run by Molly Beck Ford. I love the three honest pieces of advice in each post. In this article she talks about her strategy to building her network  "one reach out at a time"

2) After writing this post on friendship, I saw an Twitter take over of friendship posts by many of the bloggers I follow. This one that really struck me and that I actually forwarded to three of my single friends across the country is by Theodora of Preppy Runner. I am all about strengthening my relationships with my single friends.

3) One of my best friends from 2nd grade is married and living just over the bridge in Staten Island. On Sunday I drove out to spend the day and we decided to cook dinner together. If you know me, cooking is one of my biggest fears. I always say I will work on it and do for a day or two and then run from the kitchen. Anyway we started the day walking in the park, followed by wine on the patio and then into the kitchen we went. We made Chicken Marsala, Spaghetti Squash and Brussels Sprouts all from recipes she found on Pinterest. I guess I should review my "Girl, learn out to cook/bake already" board.
4) What books have you read that you enjoyed? Reading is on my list of goals for 2016 and I have just started " You are a Badass" by Jen Sincero. So far I am really enjoying it! What books should I read next week on vacation? Thank you in advance for the recommendations!

P.S. Everyone knows someone who has been affected by cancer. Yes, everyone is constantly fundraising for a cause close to their heart. This year my dad is riding his bike over 2 days for 180 miles to send 430 kids with a terminal illness to camp. He will also ride in honor of his wife and my mother who lost her battle to cancer in 2010. Every donation counts. No donation is too small. Thank you in advance!
Have a great weekend!


Tuesday, March 1, 2016

Is it Bad Luck or Something Else?

This is the question I have been asking myself the past few weeks months. Back in January I was laid-off for the second time in just over two years. So I asked myself is it bad luck or something else? I reviewed and reworked my resume. I sought out advice from career coaches, talent specialists, peers, mentors, and past colleagues.

One day I just looked up the definition of luck. According to Merriam-Webster one of the definitions of luck is "the accidental way things happen without being planned." or "Success or failure apparently brought by chance rather than through one's own actions." It was that sentence that made me realize it had nothing to do with my actions in the workplace. I was just in the wrong place at the wrong time.

I wrote cold and warm emails, browsed the inter-webs, made phone calls, spoke with everyone and anyone who would listen and started to narrow down what I wanted in my next job. This is a work in progress and I think will always be one. You should always be networking, no matter where you are in your professional life.

I don;t know what is next but I am grateful for my amazing family, friends and everyone who has supported me thus far.

I am looking forward to my next chapter. Until then I will continue to send out resumes and cover letters.