Job Hunting

There’s some changes coming up in my personal life this year (actually, quite a lot), but one of the major ones is that I’m going to be moving across the country in the next few months. Due to the inadvisability of that sort of commute, this naturally means I’m looking for a new job to go along with my new state.

I like having jobs. I mean, I complain about getting up in the morning and going to them like anyone else. But I truly do like having a job, and more than just because of economic reasons. A job gives me the kick in the pants I need to get up, get showered, and get out of the house on a regular basis. There have been jobs I’ve liked better than others, but the entire concept of a “regular” job is one I prefer having. I’m in sympathy with those people who never, quite, retire. And generally, I’m pretty good at jobs. I’m smart, creative, responsible, and generally loyal even to shitty minimum wage jobs. I’ve rarely left a job on bad terms (and in the case of my current one, they keep begging me to stay, which both makes me feel guilty and gives me a nice little ego boost all at once).

But I hate job hunting. I hate it passionately. And beyond that, I suck at it. A combination of something akin to social anxiety, low self-esteem, and a certain inherent honesty means that I look at most jobs and say “I don’t think I’m really qualified for that.” And the ones I do manage to convince myself to apply for, I often have difficulty answering the questions that inevitably crop up of “Why should we hire you?” Because really, why should they? As I said above, I’m smart, creative, responsible, and loyal. But so are thousands and millions of other people.

And so I’m left with this internal struggle to put myself “out there” enough to find a decent job. Which means I often find myself in jobs beneath both my education level and my abilities. Sometimes, I make the job grow to fit me. Sometimes my bosses quickly see the potential I struggle to find, and use that potential. Sometimes both. But not enough.

Job hunting is a life skill, but it’s one I fail at so completely, that I often wonder how I ever got a job previously. Usually, I remember that I knew someone who knew someone. This is a difficult strategy to fall back on when one is moving to a new place far from the circles of one’s family and friends. So, I hunt, stalking the wily prey like…well like a clumsy young puppy putting her paws on all the unstable spots and snapping all the noisy twigs.

Oh yes. And I write. Because even if it’s not finding myself a new job, it feels productive, and has the added bonus of being soothing.


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