You are not stuck!

So, earlier today, I was feeling a bit down. Been a few things happen of late to help bring it on…

Including, Danah and I trying to refinance our company debt, to lower the monthly payment — and were rejected on the first attempt. (We feel much better about the second attempt, but it still takes time and energy and paperwork and allowing rather nosy people — rightfully so — going through your dirty laundry, so to speak. And while they never come out and judge you, you always feel as though they’re tsk-tsk-ing to themselves.)

Besides this swell fun of meeting with bankers, our reliable — read old — Jeep recently died, and needed more work done to its engine than the entire thing was worth. So, we sold the non-running, 1997, 200,000-mile Jeep, which desperately needed new tires, for very little. And we didn’t replace it (see next graph for why), so we’re now down to one car. And when you’re down to one car, you’re immediately hit with this primal sort of fear, like, “You’ve only got one horse now instead of two. And besides this being a huge inconvenience, you worry, ‘What if a saber-toothed tiger comes and there’s only one horse?'”

Add to all this that my current employment ends next week on 9/30. The funding grant for it runs out and while I knew when I was hired that I’d only be a six-month employee, I had felt confident that I could find another grant or way to extend it out longer. (Hey, I’m Stan, and I think I can do anything, and I’m right about 20 10 5 percent of the time.)

Let me make one quick note on this, before I get to my main point below. I am NOT worried about this situation and NOT saying this for sympathy or any of that. Just laying out the background before I make my point. The fact is that I have applied for two great jobs and I’m pretty well-positioned for both of them, with some strong advocates working to help me secure each of them. Furthermore, prior to getting this job, I literally just posted on facebook and twitter the type of work I was looking for and within four hours, had a person contact me for the very job I’m in. Without question, I am SUPER blessed with great friends and contacts, and almost everyone around Oak Ridge knows my insane work ethic and bull-headed belief that I can punch through brick walls with my bare hands. In fact, if I don’t hear something from these jobs soon, I’ve got nearly twenty email addresses of some pretty big names and a pre-written email already created, for my resume to be sent out to immediately, so please believe me that I’m not worried about this. I’m also SO NOT above working three crappy jobs, if necessary. (Stan has cleaned a lot of toilets and mowed a lot of grass in his days, and he’s not afraid to do so again.)

Anyway, my point for all that crap above is that, without question, it’s interesting times in the Mitchell household!

And while I was at work earlier today and not being terribly productive — remember what it’s like your final week at your last job? — I finally broke down and took the time to watch the video below from Dave Ramsey.

The video totally motivated me and I probably accomplished more in the two hours after watching it then I’d typically accomplish in four hours anyway.

So, I’m hoping it helps you, as much as it helped me! (Note: While I know Dave makes a couple of conservative talking points, please look past this. I do not want a political fight down below in the comments.)

Keep the faith,

Stan R. Mitchell

Oak Ridge, Tenn.

About me: I’m an action fiction author with books similar to Vince Flynn, Stephen Hunter, and Tom Clancy. I’m also a prior infantry Marine with Combat Action Ribbon, and a guy who spent 10+ years in the newspaper business. Please consider subscribing to my blog — I mostly post about things that either motivate you, inspire you, or make you laugh.

10 thoughts on “You are not stuck!

  1. Balls o’ fire. That video really depressed me. I’d like to see this guy convince me that I have any – ANY – alternative to my present life. I’m a 24/7 caregiver, we spend hubby’s entire monthly pension on food and have just Social Security for everything else, like utilities, used books, and the bloody internet and cable. Vacation? Been years. New clothes? Fageddit. Savings account? Wiped out. And the (nameless) politicians want to snatch SocSec away.

    Like the punchline for the old joke, “God loves you and you can sit on your hands.”

    Sorry for the rant, Stan. I think it’s amazing that you can bounce back, and I know you’ve been in some difficult spots. You and Danah will slog through and you have my admiration. (And I do realize that my life could be a lot worse!)


    1. Now, Nancy, you do have options. It’s true if you weren’t you that you would be stuck, but here are a few I thought of right off the top of my head since I know you so well! (All of which can be done from your home.)

      Consulting with other non-profit executive directors.

      Teaching music on any one of about 12 instruments.

      Doing QuickBooks work for some of the many struggling small businesses in Oak Ridge.

      Writing a book that sums up the many lessons you’ve learned through music and life. (You don’t even need a publisher — can publish at no cost on Amazon.)

      Writing a book that sums up the tips and tricks you’ve learned about being a caregiver through these past few years. (Again, you don’t even need a publisher — can publish at no cost on Amazon — and there are probably hundreds of thousands of people who need a book such as this.)

      Anyway, I’m sure there’s more I’m missing, but these are just some that quickly came to mind.

      You need to remember that you’re an amazing, exceptional person that has absolute loads of knowledge to share with the world — from music teachers, to hard-earned lessons in business, etc., etc.)


  2. You’re right, guys. Of course, the situation has been analyzed to eternity; the only steps I can take are to slog on. And things are not all that bad when I remind myself that to balance this load, there’s always sunshine and rain, the smell of wet leaves in the fall, and there are people who deal with what I do but have to contend with senility too.
    I guess one of the things about Stan’s video that set me off was the overwhelming *smugness* of Dave Ramsey.


    1. Glad to see this comment, Nancy! I think Dave’s smugness comes from the fact he’s been doing this for so long and repeats many of the same points. I think he used to smile more and be more encouraging.


  3. I’m coming in late on this, but I remember two occasions when I got “stuck” and managed to get out of it. About ten years into my radio career I found myself with a boss who disliked me for no apparent reason (and he more or less admitted it). I liked the town we lived in, liked the other people I worked with, but rather than put up with the situation, I moved on. After another move about 2yr later I found myself in a much better situation that in fact led me to my wife, which changed my life much for the better. Eventually, though, that new employment situation became one in which I felt “stuck”, simply because I no longer really cared to do that kind of work. So I took a leap of faith, got out of the industry and after a couple intermediate stops I found my present position, which has provided me with interesting and profitable work and a means to help start my writing career. So twice in the last 25yr I “un-stuck” myself. It’s all good now.


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