Complacency – The Career Search Killer

There is a killer lurking in your workplace, behind your desk or your cash register,  whispering lies in your ear, stealing the pens you use for brainstorming and replacing them with a book or a tv remote …

Ok, so maybe he’s not following you, but a killer dogs my steps these days and it is not my first encounter.  I know his name though, and like those violent offender bulletins in the mail, maybe if I spread the word, register his proximity, then awareness will keep us all safe…

The killer’s name is Complacency D. Dreamsnatcher,  a.k.a  Good Enough for Now, and he is loving this economy. Let me tell you a little about him, in the words of

com·pla·cen·cy – noun

1.  a feeling of quiet pleasure or security, often while unaware of some potential danger, defect, or the like; self-satisfaction or smug satisfaction with an existing situation, condition, etc.



Doesn’t really sound so bad does he?  If you ignore the “while unaware of potential danger” part!  That’s where his true colors lie.  Complacency is the feeling that everything is ok, that life is smooth, maybe improving even, and you have no need to fear.  Complacency sneaks up most quietly, and dangerously, when things have been bad in life, when bills have gone unpaid, rent keeps you from eating more than noodles and peanuts, and the weeks drag on, stretching the job search like an old, crusty rubberband… and then finally you get something!  You don’t get a major break through, a dream job, a challenge matching your needs, skills and hopes, but you do get something.  It’s ok, it’s a job you don’t hate, with hours that are manageable (if you alter your life a little) and a paycheck that maybe doesn’t pay all the bills, but keeps your roof over your head and puts a little tuna and frozen peas in your pasta sometimes.  So you take it!  Yes!!  A job!!!  And the fear ebbs and the load lightens and you start to breathe again, and Complacency sees the perfect victim.

I’ve seen him peeking in my windows lately, watching me read a book, casual as can be reading a book in bed sipping coffee, enjoying my one late morning before I work an evening shift.  I hear his sinister laugh and I cringe, knowing.  I am falling prey to Good Enough for Now.

I am not paying off my debt.  I am not buying a vehicle.  I am not stocking my fridge.  I can’t imagine getting new lingerie, let alone a plane ticket to St. Somewhere.  And more importantly, I don’t feel like I am changing the world.  I don’t wake up excited about the day’s challenges.  I don’t feel like an educated, worldly, experienced 33 year old. I don’t have weekends off to go on road trips or write my books.  But, I like my little jobs, they are easy and mellow. I work with good people. I find a few hours to talk to a friend sometimes.  I bought toothpaste and didn’t have a panic attack at the register!  So I get home at night, a little tired from an 11 hour day, and Complacency whispers soothingly to me “All is well!  It’s sooooo much better than it was. You worked so hard and struggled so much, and things are ok now.  Take a little time to breathe, relax. Things are Good Enough, for now, you can start searching again soon…”  and I sit down with a book and a calm sigh, enjoy my tuna and peas immensely (relatively), and suddenly it’s a week later and I haven’t sent out a single resume to a Dream-style Job.  It’s happening…


Complacency is killing my Career Search.


I must stand and fight, turn on bright lights and music to scare him (and the coziness) away, steal back my pens and shout “I WANT MORE!!!”  I don’t want good enough!  I don’t want “better than it was!”   I don’t want toothpaste and tuna, but no plane tickets or Vicky’s ever again!


I want Amazing.  I want Bliss, not contentedness.  I want Exciting.  I want Freedom from this grinding hunt and peck.  I want!  And I deserve.  And that means less sitting by while the meager (but appreciated) paychecks stumble in.  It means less plodding and more plotting.  It means holding onto and following my dreams.


For me, Complacency’s whispers tend to make me forget my hopes and dreams list when I need it most. So for my first counter attack, next post, I will post my hopes and dreams list right here so I can’t forget and maybe someone can poke at me once in a while to remind me just in case.


So There dastardly Mr. Dreamsnatcher!!  I refuse to let you kill my Career Search!  I refuse to let my dreams be taken away by a bad economy and a crazy job market that makes even tiny jobs masquerade as lucky success.


I refuse to settle for Good Enough for Now!



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