Got Jumper Cables? My Career Is Stalled

Sometimes, when I’m at the office, I’ll finish up a project and be completely unable to start something new, just because there’s a meeting in 30 minutes. And even if it’s totally possible for me to whip up a blog post within those 30 minutes and set it to go live, I won’t.

Because my mind is occupied with waiting.

And that’s pretty much how I’ve been feeling these past two weeks.

Two weeks ago, my grandfather was diagnosed with an aggressive form of cancer, and given but a few weeks to live. Since then, the relatives have filed in to town in order to say their goodbyes, and I’ve veered back and forth between stoic, sloppy drunk, and weepy. Because — while he’s almost 99 — the diagnosis still came as a shock.

And so, my mind has been occupied with waiting.

In the meantime, my ongoing copywriting project remains ongoing. I’ve tried to hold things together at my part-time YourTango job. I’ve made an effort to play the cheerleader for the FLX Query Challenge team I’m leading. I’ve fielded e-mails from possible clients seeking me out.

But I’ve also neglected Freelancedom (I’m so sorry you guys!) and, though next week is my last career coaching teleclass, I’ve failed to move forward in securing practicum clients. I mean, all I have to do is put together my intake packet and write up a post for the contest I’ve been planning…but…you know…my mind has been occupied with waiting.

Earlier today, I chatted with my mentor coach and told her how stuck I’d been feeling lately. She asked me: What would your grandfather say if he knew what you were struggling with right now?

And while I’m not sure what he would say, it did dawn on me that completing my certification and starting my practice would make him very, very proud.

And so I have to stop waiting. Because we don’t have very long. And I really want to make him proud.

But! If you notice that I’m still struggling, despite having many excellent reasons to move forward, for the love of god, please fetch the jumper cables.

Related: When Every Day Is Sunday, How to Remain Productive When the Shit Hits the Fan


  1. Hang in there. I, too, have that “waiting for a phone call so I might as well sit here and stare into space” syndrome. Honestly, I think it’s hard to find something that lasts just 30 minutes. Hard, I tell you. But the situation with your grandfather? Harder. Go easy on yourself and know that most people in this world are upstanding human beings who will understand if you need to post pone or rearrange your schedule because of your grief.

  2. You are not alone in the waiting game. The question is what are we waiting for and why.

    Please know that I will be keeping you and your family in my prayers.

  3. I am so sorry to hear about your grandfather. That is beyond rough. Make him proud and finish up your certification. You can do it!

  4. Keep it up! I know it’s hard to not always feel like you have control and have to wait for things to happen, but it sounds like you’re going to be getting back on track. Good luck, and your family is in my prayers.

  5. I can relate. I lost my grandfather last year. Even though he was 92, it still was a huge shock to me. Very hard. I’m sorry and wish you all the best. Be kind and gentle to yourself.

  6. Yes, waiting…I think I do more of it than actual work! Or else I underestimate the time to do something,and I try to “fit it in” but end up being caught mid-project, having to bail for something that I didn’t want to waste time waiting for…But give yourself a break. You sound like you are super productive and involved in so much. And from just reading your posts, I know you’ll succeed in all you set out to do~

  7. Wow. Life has been such a blur that I hadn’t realized how many had chimed in with their support. Thanks everyone for your kind words.

    Meanwhile, Papa soldiers on. 🙂 Maybe he’ll surprise us all and reach 100!


  1. […] I’m trying to dive right back into things. Here at Freelancedom, and with my fledgling coaching practice. I’m even beginning to see the […]

  2. […] Got Jumper Cables? My Career is Stalled. Steph’s post is a personal reminder to act, rather than wait. I think we can all relate to this […]

Speak Your Mind