Switching gears from my ‘worst of unemployment’ lists, I wanted to talk about the positives that have come with unemployment. Because the pendulum still does swing, and there is still good in this world, no matter how sad I might get sometimes.
Unemployment sucks, but here are a few reasons why it has is bonuses:
Getting rid of that soul-sucking boss. Honestly, my last boss was a misogynistic overgrown frat-boy who ran an office like it was a locker-room and treated women as though the only thing we brought to the table were short skirts and an ability to fetch coffee. He didn’t think that I was qualified to fill my roll, didn’t believe that I deserved the position and made it open in the office that he really didn’t like me. Leaving him behind was an incredible gift for my psyche.
Getting rid of that soul-sucking office. My last office was the equivalent of a men’s locker room. Women were rated based on their looks, told to wear short skirts to meetings and treated as though we brought no value to the office and it was ‘a gift’ they were even letting us live in the presence of the men who worked there. Time after time after time I really didn’t want to go to work. The job itself wasn’t bad, but the people – they were so… awful. They were the type of people who made me not want to get out of bed in the morning. The type of people who would take credit for my work and then publicly (and I mean in the newspaper) shame me if something didn’t get done on time. Leaving them behind took a big burden off my shoulders and my heart. And I can honestly say, there isn’t a soul in that office that I miss.
Being able to take more time for myself. Prior to unemployment all that I did was work. All the time. Monday through Friday I was at the office from 8:30 to 6:30, sometimes 7:30 or 8:30. I worked most weekends and I never really did anything for fun. Since being unemployed, I’ve been able to do the things I’ve always wanted to do that I never got a day off for. I’ve been to the Ice Magic Festival at Lake Louise, done the air bubbles walk of Abraham Lake, hiked the largest ancient inland rainforest on earth, spent some time in Niagara Falls and Toronto, taken more than 10,000 miles worth of roadtrips and so much more that I haven’t even shared on his blog. And you know what? It’s been a dream come true.
Helping my family. As much as I like to rag on my family for the things they do to frustrate me, I’m also really grateful that I’ve had the opportunity to help them this year. Let me tell you, driving someone to the cancer clinic every day, cleaning up puke in the middle of the night, is hard for any person to face. I commend my dad for looking after my mom to the extent that he did because he really stepped up and did an incredible job, but I’m also grateful that I was able to be here and to help. Because when it’s family, you do what you can do.
It’s allowed me more time to write. To create. To build this blog. To take credit for my own writing. To say what I want to say. I know that it sounds counter-intuitive, claiming that I get credit for my writing on a blog that’s nearly anonymous (I say nearly because three people now know who I am). When I was working, I was writing all of the time for my job. I was writing things that my boss would take credit for, I was writing things that people from other companies would take credit for. I was specifically supposed to write things as though they sounded like they were coming from other people and not me. On the off chance that I did get credit for an article that I put together, I was reprimanded for not giving the article to my boss before sending it out. Here, I can say what I want, when I want. I may not have a face on this blog, but I have a person. And I value the person I get to be here… spelling mistakes in all.
It builds your strength and resilience. Rejection after rejection after rejection sucks. It sucks so hard I often break down in tears because I just don’t know what else to do. I will say though, no matter how many rejections I’ve had this year, I’ve always kept trying and I have always kept going. When it seems like it’s the easiest thing in the world to just give up, I won’t. I’m not going to give up. I’m reminded that I have the strength to get through this and I will damn well get the life I want and deserve. I know this now more than ever. Even on my bad days a piece of me still knows this deep down.
There are pros and cons to everything in this life. And for me, its a consistent fault of mine that I’m not always able to see the good. Today, though, today I wanted to remind myself of what good has come from this.
If you’e interested, my unemployment journey is detailed here >
If you’re interested, my travel diaries, tips and thoughts are detailed here >