by J. R. Practix
Accredited: (adj.) of a person, organization or course of study officially recognized or authorized: e.g. an accredited chiropractic school.
I often chuckle when people ask for a resume. Have you ever thought about it?
A resume is a statement of what you’ve already done–which reeks of “has-been.” Or it insists on what you desire to do, which sniffs of being a “wannabe.” But it certainly proclaims that you’re not doing much right now. Otherwise why would you be looking for a job?
A resume is humbling–but it is where people expect us to pull out all the information that is accredited: all the schools we attended which have the seal of approval; all the companies we’ve worked for which have some sort of visual recognition to the reader, and all the skills that fall within the spectrum of society’s present favorites and understanding.
I don’t have a college education. Due to a mixture of ignorance on birth control and persistence to honor the pregnancy of my girlfriend, I found myself launched into adulthood right out of high school, trying to acquire my pedigree in the dog-eat-dog world. Once I decided I was not going to cannibalize by eating my fellow-dogs, I lengthened my journey toward success.
Yes, sometimes there are short-cuts, but they take you through the woods where you generally run into the Big Bad Wolf.
So I tried to work on ME. I gave myself two great gifts. Here they are:
1. Don’t assume you’re good enough. There are always new ways to try new things to tap new talents to create new possibilities.
2. Don’t compare yourself to other people. Such comparisons always lead to judgment, criticism and self-delusion.
Once I started working on myself and stopped critiquing others, I got better. In the process of getting better I also got older.
It’s amazing. Some people don’t even CARE if you’ve been to college once you cross your thirtieth birthday. By the time you’re forty, they don’t even ask, unless they’re nerds.
What they want is what every human being wants: “Excuse me. Do you have anything in your knapsack that will make my journey easier?”
So I try to always bring along a provision to cover my needs and a little extra for those who forgot to pack for a rough hike. It gives me a sensation of being “accredited.” My fellow travelers look at me and say, “Thank you for taking on the burden of caring for yourself–and for giving enough of a damn to bring an extra portion for us.”
I have nothing against formal education. But the thing about “formal” is that eventually the prom is over. You need to slip on work clothes instead of long dresses and tuxedos. “Pomp and Circumstance“ stops and the new song is “Whistle While You Work.”
It’s what really makes us accredited. It’s what makes a resume leap off the paper and appear to be filmed in 3-D.
So get your education–and with all your “getting” of knowledge, acquire some wisdom. And with that wisdom, have the generosity to pull your load.
And bring along an extra sandwich for a stranger.