Saturday, March 24, 2012

Best things I read this week, March 18-24

Ya gotta read a lot if you want to write a little. Here are some of the best things I read this past week: 
"Extending the Narrative"
from Seth Godin's Blog (@ThisIsSethsBlog

"This Is A Work of Non-Fiction"
from Arts Journal

"The High Cost of Being a Woman," a look at the numbers that add up to financial inequality between men and women in America. 
from The Nation (@thenation)

White-Out News: a tumble-blog that is just what it sounds like (unless it sounds like news about white-out).

Wednesday, March 21, 2012

Working w/ unemployment : get a hobby

When you're unemployed, looking for employment is your full time job.

That said, we all need some time to recover, rest or veg out after a day or many days of work. There are only so many jobs posted, only so many people you can contact, and only so many coherent cover letters you can write in a day. This is where I find the sometimes harsh sounding advice to "get a hobby" actually really useful.

Hopefully you have a hobby already*: sports, reading, hiking, crafting (one of my hobbies of choice, and appropriately, March is National Craft Month). Spending time with your partner, family, kids or friends definitely qualifies (and is, dare I say, imperative!) as well.

*If you really don't have a hobby, a CNN quiz from 2007 claims it can help you find "America's New Leisure."

I've found that my hobbies have not only helped me stay sane, but also provided me a reward system (finish 10 cover letters and I can take a reading break), helped me with last week's tip of learning something (I'm completing online lessons in coding and crocheting), and helped me get organized (I'm reducing my crafting stash bit by bit). Just as hobbies are diverse, so are the benefits.

Hobbies don't have to be costly, which is obviously a concern at this time. I've a lot of craft supplies that I've saved over the years but never used, and loads of books I never made the time to read (and thousands more at my disposal at the library). If your hobbies lean more towards sports or the outdoors, chances are you already have the equipment, and if not, a local community center might have it available for free. Community publications and websites (like Craigslist) are great places to find others with similar interests if your hobby works best in social settings.

Unemployed or not, what hobbies help you unwind and recharge? Please share in the comments!

Sunday, March 18, 2012

Best things I read this week, March 11-17

Ya gotta read a lot if you want to write a little. Here are some of the best things I read this past week:
"I Feared You, Cilantro, and Now I Love You Too Much"
from Gilt Taste (@GiltTaste)

"Activist and Poet Pens Ode to Warn of Perils of Climate Change"
from Treehugger (@TreeHugger)

"Changing school nutrition one carrot at a time," an interview with Chef Allison Sosna about her work with school nutrition in Washington, D.C.
from D.C. Central Kitchen (@dcck)

Adventures of a Koodie: restaurant reviews and food adventures from a 10-year-old that loves to eat and try new things. Both adorable and insightful at the same time.

Bonus: the best thing I saw this week:
Ellie Kemper (of The Office and Bridesmaids) executes several perfect dance bombs

Thursday, March 15, 2012

Working w/ unemployment : learn something

As I mentioned in my last post about working with unemployment, it's widespread advice to stay busy and get involved. Anyway you can do this that's related to your career should be taken advantage of. That's why I'm focusing on learning something during this time.

New information comes out every day, and approaching that information both with an open-mind and critically helps me stay up-to-date and relevant in my field. For marketing and communications particularly, technology is moving fast, someone is writing something every day, and potential customer service case studies are starting all the time.

On every interview I've had, pre- and post-unemployment, I've been asked something that this education has helped me answer, whether it's what brands I think are marketing well, what writers I think are relevant, how I do research, or what ideas I can bring to an organization.

The best thing about this tip is that it's pretty easy to do.

Saturday, March 10, 2012

Best things I read this week, March 4-10

Ya gotta read a lot if you want to write a little. Here are some of the best things I read this past week:  
"There is no more honor in my use of Twitter than there is in not using it."
"From the vault: Hate Twitter? Fine. Stop being so sanctimonious" 
from What Tami Said (@whattamisaid)

"Ethical Style: Where Do My Used Clothes Go?"
from (@GOOD)

And of course some awesome stuff from International Women's Day:

International Slutty Women's Day: A Story in GIFs 
from Ann Friedman (@annfriedman)
Three incredible paragraphs every feminist (and then some) should read 
from my friend Anna's Tumblr (@avh86)
Bonus: the best thing I saw this week:

From Cute Overload