It's Not a Cubicle, it's a….

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It was nearly a year ago I left this

Sad cubicle farm

for THIS

Cherry Blossoms in Kyoto

and THIS

Beautiful resorts in Lebanon

and THIS

Celebrating with the World at the 2012 Summer Olympics

And now, 10 months later, I find myself here…

Back in the cubicle again…

*Sigh!*  When I looked into the future on April 1, 2012 (my escape date) did I see myself landing back in a cubicle when my 5 month trip came to an end? Well…maybe. I guess I knew it would be a possibility.  Just like when you when you to the mailbox, you know there is a possibility that there will be a bill waiting for you. A disappointing possibility, but a possibility just the same.

I knew upon coming back to the US that I’d need to have some sort of an income, and while it would have been great to have that income coming from something that would allow me to keep traveling, those jobs are not so lucrative or easy to find.  So, for now at least, I’m back in an office, I wear a badge clipped to my business casual pants and I drink coffee in an break room rather than in a scenic cafe.

But like anything, its all in the way you perceive it. I can think of it as cubicle prison or I can see this transition in a more positive light.  According to the “positive light”…

It’s not cubicle its a paycheck. 
Months of world travel don’t come for free and until I become the female, slightly pickier Anthony Bourdain, I will have to find a way to support myself. And working in a comfortable office just a short commute from my apartment in an interesting industry is certainly not the end of the world.

It’s not a cubicle, it’s an opportunity to learn.
Basically every experience you actively engage in offers a chance to learn something new. My new role allows me to get a closer look at the entertainment and media industries which are pretty interesting and I will certainly learn skills that I can apply no matter where I end up in the world.

It’s not a cubicle, it’s a chance to meet new people. One of the best things about my round the world trip was meeting and becoming friends with people I never would have come across if I stayed at home.  Although closer to home, I still am meeting new and interesting people. And you honestly just never know where that next travel or writing opportunity might come from.  The person you start talking to at the office coffee machine might just hold the key to the next big thing.  And hey – don’t people come to Hollywood all the time to be discovered?

It’s not a cubicle, it’s a motivator. And if I’m truly not happy when this 6-month assignment ends, then I will be motivated to find a better way to support myself.  If I do find that I am enjoying my new career turn, then I will be motivated to continue working while also following my passion for travel. No one says you can’t do both (AND not OR).

So, while I may not be completely thrilled about finding myself back in the cubicle I escaped last year, I am still beyond thrilled that I had the time away.  Not only did I get to explore and travel and follow my passison, I also proved to myself that I could do it successfully and I know that I can do it again.  So please wish me luck with this transition and know that this is neither the end of my international travels nor of this blog. The road still calls and I will still answer!

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8 Comments... Read them below or add one of your own
  • Micamyx|Senyorita February 8, 2013, 6:53 am

    It might sound weird, but i am thinking of going back to the cubicle again. I partly miss the consistent paycheck lol

    • Nailah February 8, 2013, 3:19 pm

      Yes. The joys of a paycheck cannot be denied! But with all the technology and flexible work opportunities out there, I just wish I didn’t always have to be in an office. Do you think you’ll start job searching now?

  • Kirsten Benefiel February 8, 2013, 4:01 pm

    Nailah – great blog. I am so inspired by you and your travels! miss you,kirsten

    • Nailah February 8, 2013, 4:09 pm

      Kirsten! Thank you so much! Yep, if it wasn’t for a cubicle (or actually war room) job I never would have met a great friend like you! Miss you too!

  • Anonymous February 8, 2013, 11:47 pm

    I had been waiting for this conclusion…:) I am glad travel has so many lessons to teach us when back home. To appreciate what we have…To accept what we have…and to be able to live and enjoy life to the fullest wherever whether we are at home or abroad…Hope that the dreams you dream from your cubicle come true. And thanks for writing this…
    Lots of love, Fogu xxx

    • Nailah October 25, 2013, 3:21 pm

      Fogo! How did I miss seeing this comment?? Thank you for your thoughts and well wishes. Still dreaming the dreams and working to make them come true! Hope you are as well, friend.

  • Rachel Potter October 23, 2013, 9:04 pm

    Even business that require their staff to be on the physical premises are doing away with cubicles, so that’s good news for some. http://www.custeronline.com/custer/workplace-trends-in-design But, for many workers, cubicles are preferable to that open “fish bowl” environment. Businesses have to decide what best suits their needs, productivity-wise.

    • Nailah October 25, 2013, 3:20 pm

      Where I work now is more of a “fish bowl”. It is nice because it makes for more open space and you don’t fell like you’re in a rabbit warren. On the other hand there is ZERO privacy. For me, I’ll continue to push for the flexible work location. Have WiFi, will travel!

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