This past weekend I drove from Jacksonville to Gainesville, then from Gainesville to Atlanta, back to Gainesville, and then finally back to Jacksonville. Along the way I received the same question many times: “You’re doing all that driving by yourself?
Well, no, some of it was done with my cat in the passenger seat, but yes, I was the only human in the car. People seemed to be shocked by that answer; they “can’t imagine road tripping alone.”
I have more time to read during my road trips than I do at any other time. Listening to audiobooks is an awesome way to pass the time without distracting from my driving, and it helps me meet one of my yearly goals of reading one fun book per month.
Plus, doesn’t everyone look forward to the opportunity to sing along to whatever music they want? Don’t they like the ability to stop to pee whenever they need without disrupting anyone else’s travel plans? Better put, doesn’t everyone enjoy their own company? And what should someone do if the answer to that question is no?
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The book I’m currently reading is called Nice Girls Don’t Get the Corner Office: Unconscious Mistakes Women Make That Sabotage Their Careers by Lois P. Frankel. It’s all about taking responsibility for the mistakes we as women were conditioned to make, and how to remedy them. So far, it’s a great read, annoyingly easy for me to relate to, and on top of all that it’s pretty cool that the author herself narrates the audiobook too.
Here are five quotes that have resonated with me so far:
1. “The opposite of a nice girl isn’t a b*tch; it’s a winning woman.”
A book like this might give the impression that in order to get what they want/need, women must either act A) nasty or B) like men. Neither are true, and the author takes time to dispel myths like those.
2. “If you don’t ask, you don’t risk hearing no, but you also don’t get what you want.”
As someone who has frequently struggled with asking for help, this quote is a good reminder that if you never ask for things like a raise, a lower credit card interest rate, or for clarification on something you don’t understand, you won’t receive them.
3. “Don’t wait to be given what’s owed to you; ask for it.”
This again ties into asking for what you want, like a raise or negotiating salary. Stop settling for less and ask for more of what you want!
4. “When we live lives circumscribed by the expectations of others, we live limited lives.”
I absolutely fall prey to the expectations of others for me creeping into the scope of my own expectations for myself. I’m finding now during my internship that others’ expectations for me aren’t making me happy, so this is a big one to watch!
5. “Honor your values. Be clear about your priorities, and live your life in a way that honors your commitment to them.”
I could write an entire blog post about this, and I just might (later…). I’ve talked about my goals in the past, and I have a running Google document where I constantly edit my goals based on my priorities, but for now, here is an excellent blog post that goes into establishing your true values and living by them.
I like this book because instead of just offering criticism, it gives coaching tips for each mistake women make, which can act as action items for me to work on. Some things are bigger, such as a reading recommendation, whereas others are simple such as taking a stretch break every 90 minutes while working.
You might be wondering how this book ties into enjoying your own company during solo travel.
Feeling fulfillment in both components of my work-life balance is the goal, but for now, my life half is awesome… my work half needs the most attention. Feeling fulfilled in my job is something I’ve lacked for quite a while now, which puts me in a pickle since I subscribe to the notion that working for the weekend isn’t really a way to live. So as someone who has also made a lifelong commitment to learning, I’m going to do my best to learn how to “win” at being a working woman. Then I can truly enjoy my solo road trips that people will still judge me for taking, but at least I wouldn’t be dreading reality waiting around the corner for me.