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Monday, December 27, 2004


After Christmas

I've been thinking about tree roots. I had the experience of trying to dig up a stump one time, and I thought it was interesting to see how the tree roots didn't quite behave as I expected them to.
Ever since I started from Nebraska, I've noticed that I am exceptionally reluctant to reach out and make contact with people. I don't go out of my way to speak to people and I don't invite people to speak to me. It isn't enough that I'm reasonably polite and can carry on a conversation once I get started...It's getting started.
It's certainly not easy to change. I hadn't really noticed the similarities to my difficulties with seeking employment are part of the same pattern, but now that I think of it, there is definitely a common element.

Among the job-hunting techniques I've noticed is a classification of my skills. One source categorizes these as Physical, social, and intellectual skills.
My physical skills are nothing impressive; I've always considered myself to be slow, clumsy, and weak. As I've mentioned, my social skills are not very great: I've never been good at sales and the like. Finding employment is in some respects a test of sales ability: I need to sell a potential employer on my ability to do the job or jobs they need done. Rather, such strengths as I have are in intellectual areas, such as reading comprhenension, mathematics, analysis, and so forth. I routinely test quite high in those areas. Unfortunately, finding employment is nothing like a mathematical theorem.
So, the question I've been asking myself, is: have I been spending too much time honing my intellectual skills to the neglect of social skills, and isn't this imbalance a good part of what is defeating me? And my own answer, is, probably.
Next question, for me: what can I do to improve my social skills? For that, I don't have a clear answer.

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