Job Searching...ugh.

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My oh my.  Searching for a new job, a short-term job, new career prospects, etc. is extremely depressing.  I've been unemployed for 2 months now and I'm starting to feel like I'm completely worthless.  This post isn't supposed to be one where I fish for sweet comments or anything, I just want to publicly express how bad this is making me feel. 

I went to Columbia College Chicago for a journalism degree.  I moved to Chicago to finish school there and to live that 'big city dream' that I had for so long.  I had already finished my gen-ed in Kansas City and was ready to start that career I had always wanted.  Except, having to jump straight into non-stop journalism classes was too overwhelming for me.  It was 2 years of nothing but writing, writing, writing and needless to say I got burnt out big time.  It's not easy to come up with a gazillion article topics in one week for the four different courses I was taking at a time.  It was stressful and not very much fun and when graduation time came, I tried to get a job in the field but truthfully, I was ready to just get a job that paid well and was easy to do.  So that's what I did.  I got a job at a corporate law firm that paid extremely well, I advanced quickly and was comfortable for three years too many.  I got my own apartment so I could kiss the roommate days goodbye, eventually moved in with my boyfriend and supported him while he figured out what he wanted to do with his life.  Keeping that law firm job was too easy of a decision.  I had a great supervisor whom I was good friends with, we often went out for happy hour drinks and I really, really loved that paycheck.  But then I started hating it as I let you all be fully aware of and I had to give it up to keep myself happy and sane.

And now I'm here.  My husband is fully supporting me now while I try and figure out my life, which is hands down the greatest gift he could ever give me.  But I'm struggling.  I'm having a hard time getting over the fact that I don't have a job nor have much career ambition or passion about anything in specific.  You see, as I search for jobs, I'm becoming more and more depressed because that law firm job kind of set me back in a lot of ways.  I don't have proper experience under my belt to just jump back into journalism.  My copy editing skills are rather poor and online courses to freshen up aren't within our budget.  Why did I take that job and get further away from what I paid so much money to learn?  I just feel like I dug myself into this giant hole that's really difficult to climb out of.  I look around and see all of my friends with passion and determination and it makes me really happy for them.  So why haven't I figured out what I want to do? 

So here's the other part of this story.  I do know that I think I'd like to own a store one day.  In my mind, it's off in the future and it takes place somewhere that we move to and settle down.  Somewhere that our home is, with those perfect dark wood floors and giant kitchen and woodsy land and garage are.  Somewhere with sweet people and less competition than Chicago.  Somewhere with an abundance of amazing nature.  Somewhere that's just not here.  But the problem is, I don't make things that you sell at stores.  I just buy things that are sold at stores.  I have an eye for things, I think I could be good at recruiting designers and artists to collaborate with.  But...how do you start?  And when do I start?  There's just so many 'what if's' to this equation that it scares me to even think of trying to pursue it. 

I'm rambling.  I'm sorry. 

I just don't know what to do.  I don't know what kind of job to look for but I feel that I need to do something with my days.  I enjoy being home and I think I'd like the opportunity to work from home.  I think I'm open to new possibilities too, I just don't know what those are.  I have things I want to do with my sacred free time, like learn Spanish and learn to knit and write music, etc.  I don't even know where I'm going with this.  I just want to feel like I'm worth something. And I don't want to wind up with another job that just pushes me even farther away from maybe going back to copy editing or getting closer to opening up a store.  It's just so confusing.  I'm not big into being confused.  And the lack of a job makes it even harder to be able to move forward with my dreams of moving away from Chicago and owning a home with my husband.

Sigh.

Thanks for listening to me rant.  You are all lovely.

8 comments:

J-Bo September 29, 2010 at 2:35 PM  

Hi Mo,

Whew, life can seem so overwhelming sometimes. Take a deep breath and maybe take an hour out to just think about nothing. Hard to do sometimes.

Have you thought about working for a shop similar to what you would like to open? Although the pay may not be ideal it would be the best learning experience in running, buying and the overall ins and outs of owning.

You might also want to check out craigslist for freelance editing/writing jobs.

My hunch is this is that fashion is your passion...

Good luck!

J-Bo

Jacob,  September 29, 2010 at 4:02 PM  

Here's a pointer, Mo. Spend less time blogging and more time job-searching. JUST KIDDING! Stay poz, that perfect job will come around, sometimes when you least expect it. Just don't forget to go for it, cause it won't come to you. That's what happened to me!

hip hip gin gin September 29, 2010 at 4:27 PM  

Oh Meagan. I totally hear you, and I have been (and largely still am) where you are. All I can say is keep your chin up even though I know how hard that is right now.

Your time might be unpaid, but it can still be an awesome time. Make a list of all the things you've never had enough time to do, and start making your way down. I promise it will make you feel better. We often feel like we should be job searching all the time, or because we're not bringing funds in we shouldn't "indulge". But think of it this way, when you do find that perfect job you will bring all the new skills and languages learned with you, and you'll be a more valued employee for it.

Hang in there. You're not alone. Vent any time you need to. And good luck!!

la petite coquine September 29, 2010 at 8:37 PM  

First things first, deep breath.

You will figure this all out. I know it seems overwhelming, but take it one step at a time. Find the things that you like and develop them. It won't always be obvious, but you'll find your way.

bobbi September 30, 2010 at 9:29 AM  

Job searching is a hard thing. It's like going in therapy, you start to ask yourself so many question...
What is the one thing you wanted to be when you were a little girl? I think deep down we all know what we are and where we would like to go. And i really believe it something that has to do with our childhood, because children know it all. They are not influenced by money and success, and career, they just want to be what feel like a happy thing. i always wanted to have a little sipmple life, with tons of animals, and i wanted to draw. I had a million of different work experiences, i made money, I was quite successful, but i wasn't happy. I just got back to what I wanted to be when i was a child, and everything came together.

la petite coquine September 30, 2010 at 11:26 AM  

I love the redesign! See, already working on things you're passionate about!

Noodles and Waffles October 1, 2010 at 11:30 AM  

1. While the law firm job may have directed you a little off course, you can still use the skills you learned there. You just need to spin it the right way. (I went from working at a coal mine to environmental consulting - It's all about the right spin). Maybe volunteer or intern somewhere you like to get something on your resume that helps you get back on course. Easier said than done, I know.

2. I'm just throwing this out there. Why not use your blog as a way to feature designers and artists? You can use your writing skills to feature them and almost act like a publicist. You find them, feature them, supply a venue for them to sell their skills/art/music, and get a commission.

3. It's okay to be lost. Sure, it's hard. That's why so many people never let themselves get to this point. Instead they stay where it's comfortable and remain miserable.

4. If Chicago isn't the place you want to settle down, start taking mini-trips to find a place you love. Maybe the job you want is there.

stephanie October 4, 2010 at 1:02 PM  

I like it when other people rant. :)

Good luck with the job search, but more than anything I really hope that you don't let it keep getting you down. You made choices for your life that benefited you at the time and offered you nice benefits (no roommates!) Now you are at a place to sort out the next steps; don't beat yourself up for what you didn't to 3 years ago. (Easier said than done, I know...)

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