Pick a verb — tired, bored, jaded, burned out.
I spent four wonderful years self-employed as a digital marketing trainer, consultant, and community manager. I managed online footprints for nonprofits and a Fortune Global 500 company. I led national conference panels on social media marketing. I spoke at colleges. I taught MBA students and small business owners everything from Facebook marketing to email marketing.
Six months ago I folded my business and wrote on my blog about a desire to work full-time as a digital marketing manager — with coworkers, a boss, collaboration, and the water cooler.
I networked. I met people on informational interviews.
I applied for jobs and eventually did get hired!
That job didn’t last long. It wasn’t a fit.
I questioned my motives and passions.
Looking back six months, I progressively relied less on social media. I checked email less. I logged onto Facebook less. I lost interest in tech trends and the latest tools. When I removed the Facebook app from my phone and ultimately didn’t care it wasn’t there, my brain started ticking.
I drank the social media Kool-Aid and I had my fill.
Here’s where I am today:
I am saying goodbye to digital marketing as a career. The social web isn’t going anywhere; and I recognize that. I remain on the global board of directors for Social Media Club and I continue to spearhead monthly breakfasts for regional social marketers. Those pursuits keep me happy.
Working in a tethered relationship to computers, mobile devices, avatars, and links is no longer happy. It’s not me anymore. I don’t want to be bound to an office or a device. I do not want to work explicitly in social media. It’s no longer something I live and breathe. I would never have written this blog post six months ago. The passion in my voice when I talk to people is so obvious to them.
I am saying goodbye to the digital life and hello to community affairs.
Before the national recession hit and I launched my sole proprietorship, I’d worked as a senior manager in state and local government. I’m currently a 2-term elected city councilor. I enjoy connecting with people in the flesh, shaking their hands, and looking in their eyes. I enjoy researching and communicating public policy issues. I’m a great public speaker. I’m skilled on both sides of media relations as a newspaper reporter and a public affairs aide.
I know I will integrate social media into wherever I get hired but otherwise this is the new me. See my background on LinkedIn.
I welcome your feedback and thoughts.