Posts Tagged ‘insurance’

My life is naught but an endless series of WTF moments strung together (seriously, nobody could make this shit up).  I’ve come to accept and acknowledge this, and realize that this storied history has landed me where I am now.  Seriously, not even the crushing weight of collective societal stupidity can make my head spin anymore.  That said, there are still things that boggle my mind– and they usually surround my existence and nobody else’s.

For example– for years, I’ve clawed and scratched to better my position in life.  I wouldn’t be where I am now if I wasn’t a 21 year old dumbass who thought that it was sheer brilliance to stop going to school full-time… because hey, part-time classes and full-time work means more money in my pocket, right?  BZZZZZZT!!!  Wrong!  Try again, dumbass!  It seemed like a good idea at the time, but has made my variegated path infinitely more complicated and difficult.  I’ve wanted to throw in the towel and become an hero from time to time, but a healthy dollop of booze and misanthropy always screwed my head back on straight-ish.  After all, that’s what cynicism’s all about, right?  Just when it seems like things can’t suck any harder than a hooker running a 2-for-1 Saturday Special– find some derisive/inappropriate way to laugh it off.  Try it sometime, I highly recommend it.

Come to think of it, that whole twisted mindset (that gave me a reason to keep fighting with Sisyphean tenacity) kinda reminds me of someone…

Some people just want to watch the world burn...

Let’s see… twisted and driven…

Oh the resemblance...

Check…

Only I don’t have The Goddamn Batman on my case trying to toss my happy ass into Arkham.  Some may argue that he should.  Now that I’ve successfully put myself on pretty much every governmental watch list there is, let’s bring this tangent back to the original topic– endlessly fighting to better my situation.  Right?  Yeah, I think that’s where we were.  Don’t judge me, stress and sleep deprivation have caused me to be more scatterbrained than usual.

Here I am today, trying to build a career serving people– helping them to protect those they care about.   There’s a litany of hurdles in my way, some bigger than others.  By far and away, the most annoying is the inherent stigma associated with being a life insurance agent.  I already bitched about that at length in the past two entries, so let’s skip the recap.  Total strangers, however, automatically come with the instant wall.  They don’t know me from a can of paint, and I totally understand why they’re assuming that this guy is another one of those situationally-scrupulous douchebuckets packing a high-pressure pitch.

I hate that shit.  I refuse to “close” anyone, because decisions about protecting yourself/family have to be fully voluntary– because they understand the numbers, concepts, and information that I’ve explained.   If they like me, and like the product, great… if not?  Well I’m not going to sit there and spit back canned rebuttals, and strong-arm someone into a deal.   I loathe salespeople of that ilk, especially bulldog “closers.”  I don’t care if you’ve got the best shit on the planet (and the company I work with, especially the product, are top notch)– strong-arming is bullshit. However, in this business….  *sigh*  Anyway.

This brings me to the paradoxical dichotomy mentioned in the very title of this diffuse… rant, if you will.

I proudly identify myself as a cynical misanthrope with a profound distaste for society’s ways in general (even though on an individual basis, I tend to be very much of a people person).   Those of you who’ve been with me since moment one are nodding your head, snickering in agreement, and also appreciating my penchant for mocking myself with the entire mix.  Take that personality, along with my profound distaste for “sales” in general, and now look at what I do.

I am fighting to build a career as an insurance agent.

Let this sink in for a moment.

Brain hurt yet?

And while that’s sinking in… this.

If you haven’t figured out that there’s a never-ending episode of Celebrity Deathmatch going on inside my head… yeah I can’t help you.  I really wish I could put these mirror-matches up on YouTube, because they’d go freaking viral.   With all of the associated stresses with being a 1099 “employee” that works solely on a commission basis (read: essentially self-employed), I’ve had to shoulder a stupid level of stress.

So let’s tally up the opposing things here:

  1. When you boil it down, I work in sales.  I despise salesmen.
  2. I hate people in general, but I generally love people individually.  (No double-entendre this time.  Kudos if you went there.)
  3. I am constantly stressed out, but I usually maintain a relaxed/amusing demeanor.
  4. I relish opportunities to deliver linguistic lambastings, but I refuse to play hardball with a client.
  5. I’ve been known to be…  colorfully reckless– I now work with life insurance.
  6. I don’t gamble because my luck sucks… my ability to get appointments often relies upon a certain degree of luck.
  7. I have a degree in writing.  I work with financials and numbers.
  8. I get distracted by shiny objects… yet I…  um…

Diametrically opposed traits?  Check.  Boatloads of stress?  Check.
Still fixing what my dumbass younger self did?  Check.

Small wonder why I’ve developed several nervous tics (that’s the next issue).

In other news, this weekend’s Homecoming… and all I can do is go through the motions, because I can’t sacrifice two potential days in the field.

Damn it all to Hell.

Unplug.

 

Why hello my little cans of digital spam, I promised you a new article– a new beginning if you will– and here I am delivering like a boss.  Well.  Maybe not like a boss, and more like a cubicle peon, but the delivery has been made.  That’ll be $19.98 plus tip.  Back to the task at hand…  catching you all up on where the hell I’ve been hiding.

Let’s see… oh yes, my brand spanking new career.  Now, before I let my brainwaves defecate into your corneas, I feel the need to preface this.  This is probably the first job I’ve had (in a very long time), where I haven’t felt compelled to make jokes about how I procure a paycheck.  Let’s see, when I was in college, I made jokes (as a waiter) that my English degree would make me extremely eloquent with “would you like fries with that?”  I worked at the Olive Garden, but hey– you get the picture, we’ve all told the jokes.  Don’t lie.

Then came the job at Rent-a-Center, which financially took care of me, but required a different approach.  I was no longer in school, and I didn’t have the textbook fall-back of “working through college” to circumvent the unsatisfying nature of the job.  Instead, when I was asked about what I did for a living– I merely retorted, “I’m a professional asshole.”  Seeing how I got promoted within my first year at the job there– apparently my friends were right when they described it as a typecast role.

Right back atcha, bastards.

I don’t know, it just seemed fitting.

Annnnyway, one thing led to your mother, then I dropped off the face of the planet, and then it got cold in Hell.  How, you ask?  I momentarily abandoned cynicism when I got a fateful phone call, and thought what they were describing sounded good.  The girl on the other end of the phone tossed a generalized pitch at me, and instead of wondering why I was getting an interview request from my monster.com resume posting (not even an application)–  well hell, I saw that pitch and took a big-ass swing at it.  After all, I’d been having relatively little luck on the job market, so that defense mechanism of “waaaaaaait a second” didn’t turn on.  Apparently defensive cynicism is a subscription service, and my broke ass must’ve been behind on the payments.  Who knew?

Fast forward– I got hired.  Or I should say, I got sold– which is a feat in and of itself.  As expected, there was a certain degree of misinformation involved in the initial process.  After I’d waded into the smoke and mirrors, I realized I had already invested a good deal of time/money/effort in getting licensed (unlike Wall Street, insurance is ridiculously regulated).  Not to mention, I’m working in an environment that is… disturbingly positive.

Savor this image for a moment: a dyed-in-the-wool cynic with a sarcastic streak a mile wide working in an office where positivity is slung around like a frat mattress among prospective pledges.  Needless to say, I had to drink the Kool Aid.  When I say drink the Kool Aid, I mean I had to do it Charlie Sheen style– because a major attitude adjustment was in order just to fit in.  Odds are I’ll joke on this later.

What do I do for a living?  I initially signed on board to handle the benefits for unions, like the cops, firefighters, teachers, boilermakers, operating engineers, etc. etc. etc.  I help people protect their families.   It seems an incongruous fit since I despise sales with a passion beyond hatred, and refuse to use traditional “life insurance agent tactics.”  My biggest hurdle?  This:


Can’t fix stupid.

Now for your moment of zen:  I get to look people dead in the eye, tell them they are going to die, and then profit.  I have, quite literally, become the merchant of death.  But I protect families.  Ow.  My head.  Ow.

Needless to say, my friends are facepalming.

Unplug.