Work Out Loud

Task: post a work in progress along with questions and thoughts of your own that address the 5 elements of working out loud.

According to this article,

“Working Out Loud starts with making your work visible in such a way that it might help others. When you do that – when you work in a more open, connected way – you can build a purposeful network that makes you more effective and provides access to more opportunities.”

Thinking about the Five Elements of Working Out Loud

I tried to come up with something academic and deep and thoughtful for this final post, but I was having a hard time concentrating coming up with something, which I actually can blame on my one, big “work in progress.” Which is, I am moving this week from Maryland to South Carolina. All of our other moves have been from Alaska to the lower 48 (or the reverse of that), so this move, in theory, should be easier since it’s only a mere 9-hour drive from the old duty station to the new home. But moving is always a lot of work, and since the moving company comes tomorrow, it is definitely at the “work in progress” stage!

I’ll briefly discuss each of the 5 elements of a “work in progress” and then I will share my “work in progress.”

1. Making my work visible. (Disclaimer: these pictures are from past moves, because my house won’t look like this until tomorrow).

2a
At least the dog thinks moving is fun.

 

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The “guess what’s in this big jumble of moving blankets and tape” game.

The whole point of the first element is to “make my work visible in a way that might help others.” Honestly, I wasn’t quite sure how making this type of work visible will help others, but then I remembered that during my first few moves, I really benefitted from posts like this and this; blog posts in which other military spouses have shared their experiences on moving and what makes a successful move. The military and military organizations provide lots of tips and resources, but sometimes it’s easier just to learn from the experiences of others in your same situation.

2. Making my work better. By writing about the experience of a military move, hopefully I will find ways to improve it. Efficiency is the key to a smooth move, and so creating a written record (this time) of what I did, didn’t do, and forgot to do, can result in a more efficient move for next time.

3. Leading with generosity. I’m not just looking for help with my own “work in progress,” but I’m looking to help others, too.

4. Building a social network. The more I get into the practice of “working out loud,” the more connections I will make. Collaboration can result in greater productivity and innovation.

5. Making it all purposeful. Creating goals for my “works in progress” helps to ensure that the work is targeted and focused. Identifying what I haven’t yet done for this move reminds me of what I need to do!

Sharing the Work in Progress

These are the tasks that have already been completed:

  • Scheduled a walk-through with our landlord
  • Took down all pictures and curtains
  • Got copies of all medical and vet records, gathered important papers/documents into an “important papers” file that travels with us and doesn’t get packed by the movers
  • Ate up almost all of the food in the fridge/freezer (been working on that one for a while)
  • Bought a case of water and a case of gatorade and ice (to put in a cooler) for the movers since they’ll be working really hard in 90 degree + weather. Movers will treat your stuff better if you are kind to them!
  • Washed sheets, towels, and final loads of laundry
  • Found, made an offer, accepted a counteroffer, and closed on a house in South Carolina
  • Transferred the utilities at our house in South Carolina into our name, and closed out all utilities/internet/cable here
  • Cleared out one large closet and started putting things in it that (a) the movers won’t pack (so we need to take with us in our car), and (b) that we will need in the 2 weeks that we are between houses. Movers won’t pack a lot of liquids, and everything they pack will get exposed to really hot temperatures, so that means anything that will melt (like candles) or get ruined in heat (like everything in the medicine cabinet) comes with us. Also, this closet so far has things like: an air mattress, camp chairs, a box of kitchen supplies, towels, pillows, etc. We call it “PCS camping.”
  • Reserved a trailer so we can haul more stuff
  • Sold a bunch of stuff on eBay and Craig’s List, and took 2 trips to Goodwill. Don’t go to the trouble of packing, hauling, and unpacking stuff you don’t even want anymore.
  • Photographed and made an inventory of valuable belongings so we have proof that items weren’t damaged before the move, in case we need to make a claim

These are the tasks that still need to be completed:

  • Unhook and prep the washer/dryer
  • Finish cleaning out fridge/freezer, transfer any leftovers into disposable containers, run the dishwasher one more time so all dishes are clean and ready to be packed
  • Separate out sentimental items to hand-carry with us. It doesn’t ever really happen… but things get stolen, fall off trucks, sink with the ship (not this time since our stuff doesn’t have to go on a boat between Anchorage and Seattle), but you get the idea. If you’d be heartbroken if you lost it, don’t let it out of your sight (if possible)
  • Clean, clean, clean so we won’t get charged during the walkthrough
  • Call the auto repair shop- my car broke down last week & we’re keeping our fingers crossed it will be done by the time we need to drive it to South Carolina (another moving tip: something like this always, always happens, so just be ready to roll with it)
  • Tape off the closet with the stuff we don’t want the movers to pack. Usually I take masking tape and make a big sign that says something like, “DO NOT PACK.” The movers roll in fast and furious and so I’ve heard stories of things like trash and the family cat getting packed up if you’re not careful.
  • Find a quiet corner to set up the dog’s crate so he’s not underfoot and stressed out
  • Pack up clothes, laptop, internet router, and whatever else we’ll need for the next two weeks
  • Finish Collection 3 for ED 654 so I won’t be trying to work on schoolwork over the chaos of the next 3 days

So there you have it! I feel like this list is a jumbled mess, but that’s probably an accurate account of this current “work in progress”! And since the point of a “work in progress” is to share something that isn’t polished, complete, or perfected, sharing this list will meet the requirements of this assignment.

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