This Crazy Quest I'm On

I have a great life. A wonderful husband whom I'm thankful for every day; an amazing step-son who truly adores me (and vice versa); a strong, independent, adult "double" step-daughter (it's complicated); the most amazing Golden Retriever ever; a lovely house we are fortunate enough to own; and we live in one of the most outdoorsy places on earth (California) with gorgeous hiking hills practically in our backyard, the Delta down the road, the ocean just a hop-skip-and-jump away and the epic Sierra Nevada Mountains two hours due east.

Liz Claflin

So, what's my problem? My work/life balance. I have tried many different jobs and even professions, but none have worked for me and, ultimately, most have made me feel depressed, bored and miserable.  Until a couple of years ago, I wasn't sure why and questions of, "What's wrong with me?" were frequent musings.  And then, even when I was sure why, I pushed those reasons away because I knew acting on them would cause my proverbial boat to sink. I'm not happy with any job I try because none of them stoke my passions.  My three passions are: 1) being outdoors, 2) working with, educating and inspiring people and 3) storytelling.  These were the missing elements in my life.


Maybe you're reading this and thinking, "OK...just become a wilderness guide and write about it!" Wrong! I'm 39 years old as of May 2017. Refer back to my opening paragraph; I have a husband, a family, a mortgage. And although I live NEAR the mountains, I don't live in them. Guides work part-time, don't make much money and have to be away from home for very long periods of time.  Also, when was the last time a 40-something-year-old woman (who is decidedly NOT in the best shape of her life) became a wilderness guide? I'm not exactly the model applicant.  Could it be done, sure! Not much in life is impossible when you are chasing your dreams.  


But for me, it's not a viable option. But I knew for sure I needed to incorporate my passions into my life more, and I knew I needed a career that would stoke other, lesser passions and give me the work/life balance I need. 


My first step: starting this blog.  I know there are plenty of other men and women out there, just like me.  Miserable souls, plugging away at jobs they can't stand, dreaming of soaring mountains or surfable break, feeling stuck.  Passions #'s two and three are, in many ways, already being fulfilled just by starting this blog.  In other words, you reading this blog will help me help myself. Gee, thanks!  


My second step was switching careers, again.  I was fortunate enough to be offered a job working for a national dog training franchise (a company I have much familiarity with and have worked with before). I run operations for the company, which means I travel a lot (YES!), I work from home (double YES!) and I work with dogs (triple YES!). Travel scratches some of my itches.  Working from home gives me the flexibility to take work calls while hiking my local hills or walking in my neighborhood.  I can go for a trail run during my lunch breaks.  I can start early and end early to allow time for a hike.  I can take my dog to the Delta for a swim. It's just so much more...enjoyable.


I know spending time in nature is the antidote to many of the negative things we experience in life. I want others to find ways to incorporate the outdoors into their daily lives with more frequency and consistency.  I plan to inspire you, dear reader, to find your own nature path through life.      

Jobs I've Tried, So Far
  • High Tech Public Relations

  • Police Officer

  • Detective

  • Public Information Officer/Community Relations Manger

  • Franchise Owner

  • Professional Dog Trainer

  • Business Consultant

  • Operations & Sales

  • Government Analyst