Thursday, July 23, 2015

Two Weeks Home

Adjusting back from two years of life as a missionary frustrates me.  After 10,000 hours of performing a complex task, the performer is considered professional.  At eighteen months, I was technically professional at planning, proselyting, and teaching and mentoring, leaving me with six months to actually utilize that profession.  After those six months of using that profession, I stepped aboard a plane that took me away from that professional life into a completely foreign world (my family moved to a different neighborhood as soon as I left for my mission).  I have no job, no friends, no personal phone, no ghettos or chicken shacks to wander into, and no formal responsibility to counsel people.  This must be what it feels like to have your umbilical cord cut (except, anatomically speaking, cut umbilical cords feel no pain).

To keep me busy, I filled Google Calendar with events such as scripture study and Institute of Religion classes, physicals and dentist visits, job searches and seminars, and hangouts and dates.  I am one who does not believe that we can ever run out of responsibility.  Perhaps the most tragic ignorance is that of responsibility.  When we run out of responsibility, would we not thus become held responsible for seeking out more responsibilities?

I gave a talk at church on that same thing, calling it enduring to the end.  I reiterated to the congregation what the Bishop told me prior to my talk.  The purpose for having homecoming talks is to excite the young upcoming missionaries to go on their own missions.   I told the congregation that he instructed me to tell a couple of mission stories so they can glimpse at the life of a missionary in New Jersey.  I did so, sharing stories about Irvington and Bernard, and also quoting Eminem.  At the end of my talk on enduring to the end, I mentioned my belief that the best way to teach is to teach a question.  I taught them what Stephen Covey calls "beginning with the end in mind."  To what end are you enduring?  In other words, why would you go on a mission?  Then, targeting other members of the congregation (as inspired by the Lord in His temple prior to me writing the talk), why get married if it won't last forever?  Why go to heaven when you expect no more responsibility?  Why live?  What's the goal?

Again, I spent two years, practically 24/7, teaching these things, so I could go on.  But I have decided to make this blog my professional blog from now on.

Here is what I have learned so far in my two weeks home:

People are not so individually different two years back, but the general population seems to have changed dramatically.  My brother is still my brother, my friends, my friends.  But my brother is not still my brother in Rush Valley, but in Stonebridge, neither are my friends my friends from high school.  Individuals retained their personalities and most behavior, but the general population now differs from the general population two or three years ago.

Jobs with my specifications seldom appear in the average job search engine.  It takes creativity, sometimes, to network or be invited to a job interview.

Scholarships also take work.

I am very inspired to change my major from Physiology and Developmental Biology (premed) to Communications.  The Communications major allows me to be versatile in the skills and talents that I enjoy in studio art, calligraphy, film, music, comedy, writing, education, special needs, medicine, culture and languages, &c., and provides paths to career fields such as speech-language pathology, stage-and-screen travel, and diplomacy and saving the world.  This is what I have been telling future employers now, as I have a background in translating documents and speak five languages.

Here are a few purposes for blogs, as explained in the article, "Dear Founders, Startups Are Easier If You Write Everyday:"

  1. Get better at explaining your ideas to others – if you can’t form a few sentences that make sense to other people, you won’t be able to explain these same ideas in person.
  2. Explore a long-form idea over a series of posts. In the same way that you have a conversation with people over an extended length of time, your thoughts on a topic may change. Write about it – the results may surprise you.
  3. You never know who you will meet. Amazing people will find you because they read what you write. The possibilities are endless.
Whether for simplifying ideas for others, exploring long ideas, or networking, the cliche adage holds true, that blogs cannot contain every thought or feeling of any human, even a human as simple as I.  But I plan to devote the rest of my blog entries to my findings in subsequent studies, particularly in those areas aforementioned that I hold close to my heart.  I promise that the entries will be brief.  Again, the cliche, "don't make promises you can't keep."  But those are the best kind.  I hope future employers (and children) find this blog useful.  I do; typing and writing down my thoughts ensures that I can stop worrying about them.

Thanks for reading.


Russell deJesus

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