I shared with you a few weeks ago that I was having a bit of a tough time, going through some stuff. (And thanks be to all the lovely people who sent supportive notes of understanding.) I mentioned in that email that I was applying for some jobs, exploring potential options.
Well, update on that, and here’s the story, plus a laugh and a lesson.
I was offered an interview for a position it turned out I was actually, really interested in. I did a lot of self-reflection about it, and I wanted it. I was pumped to get an interview, to do well on the first one and make it to the second. And here’s where the laugh comes in.
So I get on a Zoom with two of the key decision makers. They start by asking me about myself, my path, and then why I’m here, why I’m interested in the position. I was very open with my story, because hello, I’m me, not hiding or sugarcoating anything. Along the way, I made the comment that I went through this process of thinking that after a decade as a business owner, I had no transferable skills as an employee, but of course I know that’s not true, and I have lots to offer to the right position and organization.
Next thing I know, one of the women is asking me, “OK, so you mentioned your transferable skills – can you tell me about those and how you think it’ll benefit this position?”
And what do I reply?
“Oh, no, actually, I said I didn’t have any transferable skills, a-ha-ha-ha.”
OK, so let me stop there and just point out a few things I maaaaay have done wrong in this interview. Can you guess?
1) I directly corrected the interviewer.
2) And I corrected them to tell them specifically that I did not have any transferable skills to the job in question.
Jesus Christ, who does that shit?!? OK, I know you can guess this one…
1) This girl.
I had some hope that I’d actually be writing you this email to share that people fuck up at stuff like this all the time and it still works out and woohoo, I got a new job I really love! I think you can guess that, um, that was not, in fact, the outcome. I got a very nice email thanking me for my interest for the position and that they were pursuing another candidate.
But here’s the lesson part: The thing about it, truly, this email is to share that people fuck up all the time and it still works out.
It works out exactly like it’s supposed to work out. The only way it can. The way that reveals and leads you down your path.
I had a session with my therapist this week, and among a whole host of other things, I shared with her this story. I told her I was excited about the opportunity, disappointed that I didn’t get it, but ultimately totally accepting and allowing of the outcome, because I know it means that I’m meant to continue my work. I’m open and ready to receive whatever’s next for me. You know what she said?
“OK, Kourtney, I’m going to be blunt with you. All of that is great and fine and I’m glad you’re feeling good about how it worked out, but the very first thing I thought when you said you applied for a job was why are you even doing that at all? That’s not your path. It’s just a distraction.”
God, I like her. I like her so much. Therapy is the best, y’all.
The truth is, she’s right. She’s 100% right. I know that. I knew that. But I know it more now.
Hard times will make you question your path. They’ll make you question yourself.
But if you pay attention to your experiences, your choices, the signals they send you, they’ll often bring you right back to what you already know, reveal your path to you again. It might not be the same path you were on, or the expected one, or the one you thought you wanted so badly, but it will be yours. All you have to do is walk it. Sometimes, that means trying and failing.
This message, by the way, comes on the heels of me giving a talk about resilience at AspireHer this past weekend. A session in which I reminded the audience that resilience isn’t about bouncing back, it’s about coming home. And what a beautiful and pertinent reminder that indeed, I’m on my path.
So while I take a dose of my own medicine, remembering that my path right now is only to get back in touch with myself, ground in that space, operate from that knowing, show up for you, and generally be me – I hope you’ll do the same. Don’t try to force it if you don’t need to. Don’t try to zig if you know you’re meant to zag. Don’t worry about creating a straight line in black and white if you’re itching to draw a squiggly burst in full color. Don’t listen to the noise and expectations outside when you know what’s right for you inside.
Or, maybe, do all of those things (like I did 🤦♀️) and see what shakes out.
It all might mean exploring yeses and nos. Because maybe you don’t exactly know your path. I don’t exactly know mine either. That part is fine, and it’s not necessarily about that knowing all the time. It’s about trusting yourself, and trusting the things that tell you what your path is not.
There’s a concept in art called negative space, and sometimes, it’s the most beautiful – and revealing – feature of a piece of art. It can define boundaries, bring balance, and help you see things in a new way. Without a doubt, the same is true in life.
Watch for the negative space, and always, always learn from it.
Sometimes, the power of a mirror is absolutely everything. If you’d like to talk to someone who can help you see and trust yourself a little bit more, schedule a free 30-minute call with me to talk about what it might look like for you. And you can sign up for weekly emails with more helpful lessons and laughs right here.