This article just came across my transom, courtesy of Lissa Boles.

It’s Mike Rowe from “Dirty Jobs”, talking about what I call Micro-Rules and finding your *perfect* (whatever):

A Fan Asks Mike Rowe For Career Advice…He Didn’t Expect This Response, But It’s Brilliant. 

Mike Rowe from Dirty Jobs is an awesome guy. He can build or fix anything, he’s very entertaining, and has a great sense of humor. Mike also tells it like it is and gives great advice to others. A fan wrote him and asked him for some career advice:

Hey Mike!

I’ve spent this last year trying to figure out the right career for myself and I still can’t figure out what to do. I have always been a hands on kind of guy and a go-getter. I could never be an office worker. I need change, excitement, and adventure in my life, but where the pay is steady. I grew up in construction and my first job was a restoration project. I love everything outdoors. I play music for extra money. I like trying pretty much everything, but get bored very easily. I want a career that will always keep me happy, but can allow me to have a family and get some time to travel. I figure if anyone knows jobs its you so I was wondering your thoughts on this if you ever get the time! Thank you!

– Parker Hall

And here’s the reply…

Hi Parker

My first thought is that you should learn to weld and move to North Dakota. The opportunities are enormous, and as a “hands-on go-getter,” you’re qualified for the work. But after reading your post a second time, it occurs to me that your qualifications are not the reason you can’t find the career you want.

I had drinks last night with a woman I know. Let’s call her Claire. Claire just turned 42. She’s cute, smart, and successful. She’s frustrated though, because she can’t find a man. I listened all evening about how difficult her search has been. About how all the “good ones” were taken. About how her other friends had found their soul-mates, and how it wasn’t fair that she had not.

“Look at me,” she said. “I take care of myself. I’ve put myself out there. Why is this so hard?”

“How about that guy at the end of the bar,” I said. “He keeps looking at you.”

“Not my type.”

“Really? How do you know?”

“I just know.”

“Have you tried a dating site?” I asked.”

“Are you kidding? I would never date someone I met online!”

“Alright. How about a change of scene? Your company has offices all over – maybe try living in another city?”

“What? Leave San Francisco? Never!”

“How about the other side of town? You know, mix it up a little. Visit different places. New museums, new bars, new theaters…?”

She looked at me like I had two heads. “Why the hell would I do that?”

Here’s the thing, Parker. Claire doesn’t really want a man. She wants the “right” man. She wants a soul-mate. Specifically, a soul-mate from her zip code. She assembled this guy in her mind years ago, and now, dammit, she’s tired of waiting!!

I didn’t tell her this, because Claire has the capacity for sudden violence. But it’s true. She complains about being alone, even though her rules have more or less guaranteed she’ll stay that way. She has built a wall between herself and her goal. A wall made of conditions and expectations. Is it possible that you’ve built a similar wall?

Consider your own words. You don’t want a career – you want the “right” career. You need “excitement” and “adventure,” but not at the expense of stability. You want lots of “change” and the “freedom to travel,” but you need the certainty of “steady pay.” You talk about being “easily bored” as though boredom is out of your control. It isn’t. Boredom is a choice. Like tardiness. Or interrupting. It’s one thing to “love the outdoors,” but you take it a step further. You vow to “never” take an office job. You talk about the needs of your family, even though that family doesn’t exist. And finally, you say the career you describe must “always” make you “happy.”

These are my thoughts. You may choose to ignore them and I wouldn’t blame you – especially after being compared to a 42 year old woman who can’t find love. But since you asked…

Stop looking for the “right” career, and start looking for a job. Any job. Forget about what you like. Focus on what’s available. Get yourself hired. Show up early. Stay late. Volunteer for the scut work. Become indispensable. You can always quit later, and be no worse off than you are today. But don’t waste another year looking for a career that doesn’t exist. And most of all, stop worrying about your happiness. Happiness does not come from a job. It comes from knowing what you truly value, and behaving in a way that’s consistent with those beliefs.

Many people today resent the suggestion that they’re in charge of the way the feel. But trust me, Parker. Those people are mistaken. That was a big lesson from Dirty Jobs, and I learned it several hundred times before it stuck. What you do, who you’re with, and how you feel about the world around you, is completely up to you.

Good luck,


PS. I’m serious about welding and North Dakota. Those guys are writing their own ticket.

PPS. Think I should forward this to Claire?

That’s one more reason to like Mike Rowe. He’s too cool! If you enjoyed Mike’s advice, share it with others.

Source: The Real Mike Rowe

(found again at  April 7, 2016)

The most important line is in the last paragraph: “…most of all, stop worrying about your happiness. Happiness does not come from a job. It comes from knowing what you truly value, and behaving in a way that’s consistent with those beliefs.

All I can add right now is “The grass is always greener where you water it!” – Listen for your own Micro-Rules that keep what you truly want far away from you. Make changes in how you talk to yourself, and to the Universe. Your world will change right along with you.

Blessings, all…



I’m trying (still!) to pack for a week’s vacation
It’s Saturday morning, and I was planning to ‘be there’ already by now.
The car has all the ‘stuff’ already in it. Now it’s (well past) time to make decisions on what garb (clothes) to take along.
Trying to balance my guesses about ‘How hot is it going to be?” and “How cold is it going to be?” “What parts of my (new) self do I want to show off?” (or do I, really?) “How many defaults am I willing to keep, this year?”

Acckkk! So many decisions – so little time. Time to Trust myself and stop third-guessing.


I’ll be back in a week or so – I’ll check back…


I did recognize one huge fear-slash-uncertainty this morning, that I had to deal with in my heart, and I made a decision-for-now about it, and that seems to have helped hugely.

Also recognizing that “packing the car” has overtones of “must fill up all this space!!” going on…


Okay – on the road within 15 minutes, Girl!

This isn’t a really new insight – but it’s a new image to tie it to, and a new explanation and answer-to-WHY??? .

via Flickr

{an even better image would be from the Buster Keaton film, “The General”, but you’ll have to find that one yourself  ;)}

…the mash-up of this post from Ariana Benefit, and this one, and part of my Soul Map reading by Lissa Boles (especially about identifying my “wound”), and a piece of convo from an old post at Caitlyn’s… (read the comments, too!). Come to think of it, Shanna talks about this stuff a lot, too (pick a post, any post… they’re all in my ‘tool kit’ and hard to separate out, now):

I WAS / AM that kid who’d be labelled ADHD, and ADD, and Gifted, and Socially-Retarded (maybe even Aspergers!), and Shy, and “too creative for my own good”, but unwilling to apply myself, and dreadfully “not living up to my potential”! (This majorly pissed off my kid sister, and helped drive a wedge between us that still causes problems…) if I was 12 now instead of fifty-something…

In grade school, I was also, in no particular order:  tall; heavy (“Chubby” according to the oh-so-sensitive marketers at Sears); smart; lived far away from everybody else; didn’t own a bike, but my folks had a Cadillac and a 20-year-old Buick (both weird cars, for the time and place); had parents easily 20 years older than the other kids’; and enjoyed talking to the teachers more than to most of the kids.


I’m not sure there’s a “Point” to this post – mostly it’s about recognizing the connections and relevances and relatednesses and influences that I have to work with,  and – and – and – yes, feeding my “Post Something, Dammit!” Monster… ~ also curing today’s “write it down and it’ll stop distracting you” …

Happy Friday ~ it’s snowing – gotta go – Yay!

Bridget Pilloud gifted me with this reading on my “Color of the Year”:

(It’s near the center of the list – but all these colors pertain, because of my mix.)

Ocean rising.  Green moving to teal  to blue, to purple to violet and back. Flowing.

This is a suggestion that while you experience many different moods and ideas, you see what stays the same throughout your experience.

For though the colors change, they’re made up of the same thing, water and light.

There is less pressure near the top of the ocean, where the colors are the brightest.

Expect a year of light, teeming with life, and all of the good and difficult that comes with it. Pay attention to what stays constant.

Constant in my life? After a year (or three!) of huge changes ~ ??

One thing I’ve realized/recognized/admitted(!) just this morning, is that I’ve been soul-deep and cosmically UNhappy with choices I’ve made over the years. And *that* hurt so much that I buried it so deep that I couldn’t feel it. They frequently felt like the only option available at the time, but still …

Sometimes, I picked the easy way, or the 4-year-old’s  “I wanna…” way.  Sometimes, it was simply the “oblivious to others” way. Once in a while, I picked what I KNEW was right, even though I also knew it wouldn’t be easy to live up to (more often recently than when I was younger – imagine that!).

Those oblivious choices have caused deep hurt to other people, too. Especially family. Now, I’m searching for ways to ‘make amends’ ~ that won’t cause more harm ~ (Is that taking on too much responsibility for other people’s emotions?)

What else is staying constant? I’m still chewing on that ~ reports as I realize them!