Maybe it’s just the Alprazolam I took to help me with the intense nerves I have every time I go on a job interview? Or the excessive over-the-counter herbal supplements I decided to stack just “in case” the pharmaceutical grade stuff wasn’t enough to calm my notoriously bad (and often embarrassing) social anxiety- complete with shaking hands, quivering voice, dry mouth and mind-blank outs I seem to get every time I have to talk about myself to nearly anyone- even people I know well.
But at this moment, an hour after I got home from another job interview (the second one in a week) I feel way more confident about myself and ready to take my writing career and my “entrepreneurial baby” Femmespire Media to the next level.
It’s time to practice what I preach.
I talk a big game, always trying to encourage and empower other people to believe in themselves, not settle, and pursue their dreams whole-heartedly. But if I’m honest, I’ve never really done that for myself. Or if I have, it was probably when I had just graduated college and the world seemed all shiny and new and I felt like I could (at least eventually) do anything I took a chance on or set my mind to.
But then shit happens, and you get left having to face your own weaknesses and inner demons that you thought you ran away from but apparently never completely did. And the old familiar feelings of insecurity, anxiety, depression, and inadequacy creeps its ugly head yet again and convinces you (well at least for me) that maybe you really aren’t good enough after all and are doomed to settle for that second-rate life you never wanted.
Those stupid internal demons in my head have kept me up, ruined my life and stole my joy for far too long. But not anymore! Or at least after today, I feel way more confident and determined in myself to pursue my dreams and build this life I want whole-heartedly. You know, less talk and more action.
And it’s about damn time!
So, let me preface this by saying for the last three years I have been working a very stressful, very dissatisfying “day job” at a retail pharmacy for a large corporation. I’ve cried on the job numerous times and had more sleepless nights than I can count because I literally will be kept up ALL NIGHT long, dreading going back to work, beating myself for my “poor life choices” that have kept me trapped in this life I don’t want, doing a job I don’t care about nearly at all.
I mean, I genuinely care about people and enjoy helping customers/patients, but this job is literally just a “day job” I do to pay my bills while I try to get myself together enough to make my living writing books and music or running my socially conscious media company and online store at Femmespire Media. And with my apparent deep-rooted, detrimental thinking about my “worth” and “value” in the world and the workforce specifically- it has been a long, bumpy journey to say the least.
But thankfully, today, I got to see a light at the end of the tunnel.
Six years ago, when I first moved back to Upstate New York after my father passed away, I began working for a small, mom-and-pop printing company in New Paltz NY. I mean it had its own set of problems, but I loved it. I loved the work, the clientele who consisted of mostly artists, local entrepreneurs, and college students. All people focused on building their careers and moving their creative/academic/entrepreneurial goals forward. I.E. MY PEOPLE. But that particular company had its own issues. So, when I saw a job listing on Indeed for a similar position, I of course, had to jump at it.
So, I took my anxiety medication, stacked my OTC herbal supplements for anxiety/mood (I personally love L-Tyrosine, GABA, and Lion’s Mane…all things I will or maybe have written about previously) and went to my interview for a potential job at a screen printing/embroidery company in my home town of New Paltz NY.
I almost didn’t respond right away. But then I decided to because the owner Mary ended up messaging me a couple of different times to get me to set up an interview. Which kind of made me feel like hot stuff.
I mean this was one job I felt totally qualified for. A rarity for me, as my self-esteem and anxiety level has been so low (especially lately) and I’m still sadly haunted by negative, discouraging words from my past that have held me back for too long.
But after talking to her for at least a half-hour I had come to the conclusion- I am awesome, y’all! I mean I am writing this post before I even have gotten a response yes or no for the job, but I don’t care. I have FINALLY realized one extremely important message in life:
I am a “beast”. I have talent, passion, and skills that most people don’t. After a year of working in a “sister printing company” I have gained many very valuable skills: Printing, marketing, booklet bindery, customer quotes, etc. After over a decade of “customer service” working for a retail pharmacy/store, a local hardware store, and my own side-hustle- I have MANY skills to offer the world. Contrary to what many people in my life have acknowledged over the years.
Anyway, that’s when it happened.
I was walking down route 32, which is only a half mile from my apartment. I was wearing my favorite black beaded choker necklace and my burgundy sweater that always makes me feel classy. I had my expensive Clarks leather boots on instead of my usual knit no-name sneakers I bought online.
But I finally felt like the Queen I always preach to other women to believe they are- whether that be in person or through my website/social media pages. Yes, I AM a beast too. I have many skills, strengths, passions, and things in general to offer many businesses. I have many positive things to offer my own “ideal” media company, Femmespire Media, my author brand “Tiffany Grand Media” and other businesses locally and online in my life around me.
Most importantly, I realized one majorly important thing: I AM AWESOME! And after speaking to many other business owners, I am overqualified for many jobs. Sure, I may 'lack' many skills in life: “extroversion”, building EXCEL Pivot tables, Public Speaking, etc. As of 2023, I have about 15 years of customer service experience. And even though that doesn’t encompass every needed skill, it does indeed fill in a lot.
I might have spent 15 years beating myself up, comparing myself to other people and over analyzing my skills, strengths and weaknesses. But I am FINALLY learning about my strengths and what I have to offer certain industries and the world around me. I def have some baggage from the past (which I will elaborate on in later posts/books) that have held me back and prevented me from living my best life possible for too long- but it’s time to change. Sometimes it might take you to step out of your comfort zone, face your deep-rooted insecurities and fears, and just put yourself out there. But once you do it might change everything.
I had been literally hating myself for way too long. Hating the life I was living, hating the choices I made before, and hating the person I felt like I was becoming- or doomed to become. But not after today!
I now see that I have soo many awesome skills, talents, passions, and gifts to offer the world. And, so do you!
It might not take you to go through a bunch of mediocre job interviews to rediscover your unique strengths and experience, or for you to battle massive mental health issues in anxiety and depression like I have. You might not have to take pharmaceutical grade anxiety medications or stack herbal supplements to finally have peace and confidence in yourself (but that’s completely OK if you do).
My “day job” from late 2019-early 2023 has been spent working in a retail pharmacy, where literally half of my clientele was on anti-anxiety, anti-depressants, or ADHD medication (that is until the national shortage hit). So, if you battle mental health issues or struggle with feeling like you’re not “good enough”, not “qualified” or “looked over” for whatever reason- I want you to know you are NOT ALONE. And most importantly, you are NOT doomed for a second-rate life.
You do NOT have to settle for anything that doesn’t feel truly “authentic” to you and your life goals- whatever they are or however “crazy” they seem. And it’s BETTER LATE THAN NEVER to realize/discover/believe in your worth and value in life. Because you ARE worth more than you know, have more to offer than you’ve been told in the past, and can do and can accomplish more than you ever imagined. Please don’t forget that!
Love & Lightbulbs,