Today is a lesson in patience.
The world doesn’t move at my pace.
Practice my breath work while waiting.
My strategy’s nearly in place.
It’s been 3 weeks. No bites. Not even a nibble. Just disappointment and waiting. And then waiting again. Then waiting some more.
I’m not good at waiting, I’ll be honest. Some potential employer is going to read this and promptly scratch my name off their list. But they’ll love reading it and tell me what a great piece this is. Sigh.
I’ve seen a lot of strategies for finding a job. But do I really want to simply “find” a “job” or do I want to do something that is enjoyable, that makes a difference in the world, and that doesn’t make me hate getting up in the morning.
Truth be told, my last gig was like that. Alas…
I want to find a job that doesn’t stress me. And that will take time. I know it. I don’t like it, but I know it. While I have associates who have applied to dozens or even hundreds of jobs, I have applied to 8. I have good reasons for this strategy but at least once a day I find myself thinking “just apply for everything, it’s a numbers game.” No. No no no. Desperation is a terrible place to negotiate from. It means you give up too much.
At some point in my earlier life, I could see applying for 10’s or 100’s of jobs. I would have applied for everything that’s even remotely near my skillset. But now I know better. Would I actually take any of those jobs if they were offered? Likely not. Either the money isn’t there or there is a preponderance of red flags (”must be willing to subordinate oneself to the mission and to work long hours” for example) or pizza as a bonus or the job isn’t remote or whatever other reasons one doesn’t accept a job offer.
Taking a job just to take a job – at least at this stage of my unemployment – seems wrong. Earlier in my life I took whatever I was offered at whatever wage they offered. That was a symptom of my having no real skills to speak of, my low self-esteem, a culture that placed women as receptionists or secretaries, and/or my having been unbelievably naive and sheltered. I was miserable at all of those early jobs. I was WAY smarter than my bosses and they had no interest in helping someone grow their career.
Today I know better. There is no reason that we have to be miserable at work. Seriously. I saw a job posting where the hiring company put their values into their post. I love when people tell you who they are right up front. In it, they said that success comes from grit and resilience. <cough> Wut?
These days, we spend so much of our lives having to be “resilient” and, frankly, I’m tired of it. My friends in the Black community are tired of having to be resilient, my women friends are tired of having to be resilient, my LGBTQ+ friends are tired of having to be resilient. Our patience is wearing thin.
Resiliency doesn’t make you successful. Suffering doesn’t make you successful. Doing the next right thing, treating people well, being a good human – THAT is what makes us successful. My business didn’t grow because I was ruthless and had grit. It’s because I made good decisions (most of the time) that were thoughtful and kind, that treated my customers with respect, and because I had trusted advisors who encouraged me and taught me. And I brought this traits with me when it was time for me to work for someone else.
We should be rewarding trustworthiness, honesty, and ethics so that our co-workers and employees don’t have to feel like they’re always fighting for their share of the pie. People cannot survive being under a Sword of Damocles all the time. Something has to give.
And, so, I have to practice patience until the right job comes along. It will happen. In the meantime, I’ll keep putting one foot in front of the other and doing the next right thing.