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  • Writer's picturemaggiehsmith07

Find Your Tribe. Love them Hard.


In the spring of 2017, I was looking forward to completing my masters’ degree. That same time of year, I left the company I had been with for 9 years. I left for many of the reasons that people leave jobs – but chief among them was that I was going to get yet another, different supervisor and the experiments over the years with supervisor changes were memorable at best. Having had a sneak preview into what was coming, I choose to avoid this after spending 17 years working in senior living I thought it was time to try something new. I think I had to prove to myself that I could succeed in a different environment and to do so before I’d pigeonholed myself in an industry.

So off I went, like Alice down the rabbit hole, into HR at a software company. Early on, an employee said to me, “You could walk across this entire office and no one would raise their head and say hello.” Which isn’t really to say that they are an unfriendly bunch, but they’re a bunch that has their head down, working. A bunch that overall wasn’t anything like the bunch I’d left behind. A smaller bunch which added to the challenge of finding my people.

“These aren’t my people.” I said to Andrea.

That first year, we attended a Halloween party at the home of a colleague and Andrea said, “They could be your people.” Six months in, I wasn’t sure. In January of 2018, someone greeted me by name in the parking lot and wished me a happy new year. I was astonished someone knew who I was although I had been there for 9 months by that point.

I spent a lot of time at my desk, implementing new HR software and, like Alice, I grew. You may recall that Alice grows tall. I grew wider. I missed my friends. And, I made knew ones. I found them and they me and I was grateful for that. This past Saturday, I attended a meditation session and the woman who leads it talked about karmic contracts. How we have a soul contract with each person we meet and that meeting satisfies that contract. I’ve since looked into this and learned that karmic contracts are our relationship teachers. The people that come into your life to teach your soul a lesson. Ultimately, at the end of your life, they are who taught your soul how to be whole. The lessons they teach are a part of your soul's evolution.

It’s funny in retrospect – how I left a place to sidestep a supervisor and jumped into the great unknown with another supervisor. Soul contract.

I learned that I missed working for a mission driven company. I missed connecting to the greater good of what it was the company was doing. I missed seeing the lives being touched.

And then, I went to breakfast with an old friend and former colleague and from that breakfast came the opportunity to do that work again with my people.

So, yeah… I’ve had Ozzy Osbourne in my head for weeks, “Mama, I’m coming home.” Which isn’t a song one would choose for work and yet it kinda works because I am returning to my old company in HR to open new buildings for them! Back to a boss who was the one constant in a minor cast of crazies.

I proven to myself that I could be successful outside of senior living/healthcare. I did find my people there and I satisfied many soul contracts. There is also no coincidence that I stumbled across the book, The Buddha In The Office, when I did. Or that came across the book The Year of Less when I did. These works helped me put all the jumbled work and money pieces of me in order.

Today was my last "official" day at the software company. I am grateful for having had the opportunity to step into a different industry and I am so grateful to the tribe who became my own. I will miss them.

But now? Cue Ozzy...

Times have changed and times are strange Here I come, but I ain't the same Mama, I'm coming home Times gone by seems to be….

But, I can't stand to say goodbye Mama, I'm coming home

But I'm gonna take this heart of stone I just got to have it all

I've seen your face a hundred times Everyday we've been apart I don't care about the sunshine, yeah

'Cause mama, mama, I'm coming home I'm coming home

-Ozzy Osbourne, Excerpt from Mama I'm Coming Home


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