Wednesday, September 28, 2011

Ghosts In The Machine

As we go through this life, there is a constant ebb and flow of people we meet. Of people we lose. Of people we loved but we'll never see again.

Your MatchGirl, gentle readers, has been seeing ghosts. Not the kind that horror movies and Halloween specials are made of but ghosts of the past.

Maybe visions is a better word.

It's funny because in the age of social networks, we forget how easy it once was to lose hold, to lose track, to lose contact with people. But I think it still happens. And when you come face-to-face with one of those ghosts again, it brings you back to another time and place.

Your MatchGirl writes here, often, about using social media for your job search, about the importance of networking and keeping track of who you meet - of heling others because one day they might help you. We forget sometimes, though, in our push for the next big thing - the next job, the next promotion - that there are people from other parts of our lives who have helped us grow to where we stand now.

I was interviewed recently and asked, "What do you wish you knew when you were in college?" This is something that your MatchGirl has thought long and hard about. And the answer is something that brings ghosts to mind:
I wish, when I was at school, that I had known it was OK to follow my gut. I listened to a lot of advice from a lot of people, including some who told me I could never be more than I was – that I wouldn’t make it – and I wish I had known it was OK to ignore those people. That all advice should be taken with a grain of salt.
Because a lot of those people offering advice were not professional advisors (though a couple might have been professors). They were friends and lovers. They were people who saw me the way they imagined me to be, not the way that I could be. Not the way that I saw myself. When I was in school, I was not agressive about my wants and needs, I, for the most part, kept them hidden (this is something that started in elementary school, when it was not OK to speak up). In retrospect, I guess I was embarrassed to share my dreams and to show that I could make them happen.

This certainly held me back. But it also helped me to get where I am today. And every now and then a ghost pops up to remind me of the way things used to be and the way things might have been.

I'm curious, what ghosts are haunting your progress? Are there any visions out there holding you back?


  1. If I'd known you back then I would have told you that those who believe they can are the ones who do. Somehow though, you must have believed yourself anyway. :)

  2. Thanks for that! Too bad I didn't start believing till I was over 30...