There are days…

There are days when I struggle to look at myself in the mirror.

There are days when I don’t believe that I’m worthy of anything I have in this life.

There are days when I just don’t feel capable of basic human function. Everything seems too difficult and too complicated for me to even comprehend.

There are days when I wonder what I did wrong to wind up this… scared, selfish and stupid.

There are days when I question everything.

Oh, there are days.

There are days when everything bothers me. People chewing. Rain falling. Wind gusting. It’s all annoying and there’s nothing I can do but just see it through.

There are days when it’s hard to zip my lips and to stay out of it.

There are days when I want to give up, run away, leave it all behind.

There are days when I am so out of touch with myself that I look back and I think ‘who the fuck was that person?’

Oh there are days.

The most important thing to remember through all of this? That without the bad days we cannot appreciate the good. That the good people in our lives, they’ll be there whether we’re in a good mood or a bad. Whether we’re easy to get along with or we couldn’t be trying harder to push them away.

We need to remember that these bad days remind us that we’re human. That struggle is real and that we shouldn’t diminish the value of it when it comes. Because struggle teaches us. It makes us stronger. It shows us what we’re truly capable.

There are days when it feels a though the world is crashing down around me. But those days, as with all things in life, they too shall pass…

The worst things about unemployment part two

Photo from GFMAG.COM

Anyone who’s been unemployed for any length of time knows what it’s like to feel as though you don’t have a voice, a value or a place in this world. They understand what it’s like working hard to find work and ‘playing the game’ of the potential employer, to no avail, just waiting for your day in the sun.

Unemployment sucks and here are a few reasons why:

Being told you’re living easy. This one annoys the crap out of me. People think that if you’re not going to work each day, you’re not contributing, you bring no value to this world or their lives so all you’re doing is sitting on the couch watching Netflix. And since all you’re doing is sitting on the couch watching Netflix all day, you must not have any real problems and thus your life is inherently more easy than those with jobs. It’s a shitty assumption people make.

When people ask you what you do for a living. Do you tell the truth and deal with the awkward conversation that will follow? Do you lie and pretend that you do something you do not as a means to save face? Either way, it’s going to be awkward.

Being unemployed plays a contributing factor in many health concerns. Unemployment can lead to depression, low self-esteem, anxiety, and other mental-health issues that affect every aspect of your life… and there’s really nothing you can do about it, especially if you truly want a job and it doesn’t seem to be happening, no matter how hard you try. It can cause serious tension, stress and strain on the body.

Being an adult is so much more enjoyable when you have money. It’s true. And when you’re not making bank, or you’re struggling to make bank through side hustle after side hustle after side hustle, sometimes it just feels like it’s all you can do to keep the side hustle. You’re not enjoying life, you’re just trying to stay afloat and stop the feeling of drowning.

Rejection emails. I’m talking about the finely-tuned art of an automated response that somehow manages to very succinctly, professionally, and somehow brutally, crush your hopes and dreams with the kind of disengaged effort that is, by true dictionary standards, effortless. You’re reminded of just how little they care about you (and all job hunters) and just how far removed we’ve come from basic human interaction… because it’s all automated, no-response email addresses these days.

No response from a company whatsoever. I’ve noticed a distinct trend on Indeed and LinkedIn in which, if the company doesn’t find a resume they like, they’ll simply delete the job posting and repost it to present day so that it appears at the top of the list of most recent listings. You don’t get a response as to why you’re not being considered, you don’t get to know why you’re not good enough and you don’t get an email to ask them WTF! I’ve seen postings appear 5 or 6 times over the past few months.

You become so used to rejection that you begin to expect it in other areas of your life as well. This plays a lot to do with the low self-esteem mentioned above. Picture this – you meet a man or a woman in the bar and you really hit it off. After swapping phone numbers you head home for the evening and then you’re hit with it… the doubt you have about yourself. The fear of rejection and the bracing of yourself for when you don’t hear from said person ever again. It’s a serious mind-fuck that allows you to start to believe you’re not worthy of people, places or things, let alone the job that started the whole avalanche.

Trying to talk about it with people is a struggle. When you’re stressed it helps immensely to talk about it with someone. When you’re unemployed, you’re heavily stressed out. Trying to talk about this with anyone isn’t really an option though because they either don’t understand because they’ve never been through it, or they just don’t give a damn because, if it’s not their problem, they don’t want to hear about it.

You feel guilty about actually treating yourself. There’s a notion carried in society that if you’re unemployed you should not be enjoying yourself and you should not do something for yourself or have fun of any sort. So, if you do take the chance to do something for yourself to try and boost your self-esteem or make yourself happy, even if just for a few hours, you inevitably end up feeling guilty for doing such action because… you’re unemployed, and thus should not be spending your money on what is deemed frivolous things.

Receiving unsolicited advice. Because when you’re unemployed everyone has an opinion about what you should do and everyone wants to share their opinions with you. The fact of the matter is, with the exception of a very few close people, no one truly knows what you’re going through, what you’ve done or what you’re presently trying to do to find work. Unsolicited advice often come with the assumption that you’re just not trying, that you just don’t care and that you just aren’t capable. Rather than taking the time to ask and learn, invest in you to ensure their help is worthwhile, they just take their assumptions and start throwing opinions your direction. These opinions aren’t helpful and can often add a lot more stress to your days.

Being too good for some jobs is a fucking joke. I have a Bachelor’s Degree and ten year’s of industry experience… and I have had to ‘dumb-down’ my resume to even get retail places to take me seriously. I’ve been turned down from Wal-Mart, MacDonalds, Burger King, and so on and so forth, because they believe if they hire me, I’ll leave right away. Because of this I’m in an awkward stage in which career positions don’t seem to consider me a viable candidate and retail positions consider me not a worthy investment and thus, I can’t even get a job as a cashier. Life happens. Sometimes people have to deviate from the plan, you would think that potential employers would be understanding of that fact. But no. I dumbed down my resume, took my education and experience off of it, applied to be a cashier at a local grocery store. When I went to the interview I thought it was going great and the store manager loved me! Within two hours of leaving the interview I had a rejection email in my inbox. I can’t even pretend to be dumb to get a job it seems.

People assuming you want to be unemployed. If you’re unemployed for a certain length of time, people genuinely assume that you just don’t want a job.

Jumping through ridiculous hoops to try and find a job in 2019. Companies are asking for ten references, for you to record 15 minute videos of yourselves to submit for them to review with your resume, asking you to fill out application questionnaires that can often take upwards of an hour per application, to take aptitude after aptitude test that prove nothing more than an ability for deductive reasoning. NONE of what they are doing in this time involves having an actual conversation with you.


Read:

The worst things about unemployment >

More posts about unemployment >

Unemployment is exhausting on the body, mind and soul.

Another day, another setback.

I first had a phone interview with a company on July 3rd. They had liked me so much that I had a Skype interview with the same company on July 10th.

Then I was told they needed a week to continue interviews with other candidates and they’d get back to me. I was told I’d hear from them regarding a decision on July 17.

On July 19th, I sent an email and said ‘Hey, haven’t heard from you guys, just wondering if there are any updates’, in a professional manner. Less than ten minutes later they wrote back and said ‘Hey, we’d like for you to have a skype interview with our CEO. He has a busy schedule though, we’ll get back to you when we know he’s available for an interview’.

On July 22 they sent me an email that said the CEO would be available to do a Skype interview with me on August 6. More than two weeks away, and more than a month after my initial phone interview.

I ain’t got nowhere to go. My job offer had been rescinded on July 11, so it’s not like I had many choices. I agreed to call them on Skype on August 6 at 11 am and asked that if a time came up prior to that point they let me know because I’d love to speak with their CEO sooner.

I waited my turn. I continued applying for jobs, arranging interviews, wasting my time filling out assessment tests that explain nothing more than a candidates deductive reasoning skills. I’ve not been sitting on my butt. I’ve genuinely been trying as I waited for August 6th.

August 6th finally arrives.

As I’m straightening my hair and putting on my makeup this morning I hear my phone beep with an email that’s come through.

9:55 am I receive an email that says “We’re so sorry to do this to you but we have to cancel. An emergency came up and we won’t be able to have the interview this morning. – M”

ALRIGHT. At this point you’re just screwing with me. You’re wasting my time and you just don’t give a fuck.

Honestly, I’m so tired of these games. If you’ve got another candidate you’ve offered the job to, that’s fine. Stop lying to me. If you actually had an emergency in which you have enough time to email me, you’d say “We’ll reschedule”. If you actually cared about me as a candidate whatsoever, you’d say “We’ll be in touch” or something of the sort. But nothing. No “We’ll call you”… noooo language whatsoever that’ll allow me to believe I’ll ever hear from this company again.

I feel like this is the unemployment version of a breakup where… instead of breaking up with you they play stupid games with you in hopes that you get fed up and walk away.

Things I’ve learned applying for more than 200 jobs.

I’ve been unemployed for seven months. It has been seven months filled with the highest of highs and the lowest of lows.

On one hand, I’m glad to be free of the prison-like confinement I felt being around my previous boss. I’m glad I’m not in an environment that celebrates toxic-masculinity and treats women as though the only thing they bring to the table is boobs.

On the other hand, I miss work. I miss financial independence. I miss the feeling that I felt when I was contributing to something, when I was making a difference to someone’s (not in my office) day.

I looked in my resume folder last night and I realized that it now has more than 200 files in it. 200 resumes. 200 times I was rejected. 200 times I was said no to. 200 times I tried and it didn’t work out.

I’ve been applying for employment throughout the past seven months. I’ve applied for career positions, for retail positions, for casual positions, for any position that I thought might allow me to start earning a pay cheque again. I’ve been hired and had my job offer rescinded after I signed contracts and employment paperwork, I’ve made it to the final round, I’ve been one of the last two candidates for them to choose from, I’ve had people ignore my resume, I’ve had scammers tell me that I need to pay $4,000 as a security deposit before I can work for them. I’ve been to good interviews and bad interviews, I’ve wasted my time trying to hunt people down and I’ve spent a lot of time on interviews and conversations that didn’t end up going anywhere.

I’ve been through it all and, through it all, these are the things that my unemployment has taught me.

Always, always, ALWAYS review your resume. The most embarrassing thing you can do for yourself is to send off a resume with the wrong company name on it, or with spelling mistakes. Whether you’ve sent off 3 or 4 resumes, or 200 resumes, ensure you’re reviewing and spell-checking every time you curate your resume.

Curate your resume. Every time. As annoying as it is, it will stand out a whole lot more if you’ve got it curated to the job your applying for. Everyone on earth can write standard skills for standard employment on a resume. If you want ‘this’ job, then curate your resume to showcase skills that would make you an asset for ‘this’ job.

Rejection is not about you. Think of it this way: most often, you’re competing against hundreds of candidates for a position. As one of hundreds of candidates, if your resume doesn’t even make it into the ‘read’ pile, that says nothing about you. Sometimes, they only read the resumes of those who are local. Sometimes, they only read the first 300 resumes they get instead of all 800. I know what you’re thinking… that’s silly. Why would they only read 300 of 800 resumes, they’re missing out on so many candidates. The newsflash here is… most companies don’t give a damn. They really don’t. I’ve seen this in action. Though they’d never say it publicly, the previous office I worked in would eliminate all resumes from the pile for, management positions, if the candidate had a female’s name on their resume. If they had a name that is more gender neutral (where it could be a guy or a girl), they’d go into the maybe pile. They’d only move to the gender neutral named candidates if they couldn’t find the person they want in the resumes that were clearly men. I guarantee you that my former office is not the only place on earth where things like this happen.

Don’t feel bad about lying to put yourself ahead. Companies don’t care about you. They don’t. If you need to state that you’re living in a place in order to get them to consider you as a ‘local candidate’, say that. If you need to have your best friend pretend that he/she worked with you at your last job in order to get a reference, do that. Companies are putting themselves first, so do the same thing for yourself.

DO NOT be afraid to correct a potential employer. I’ve been called the wrong names… multiple times, I’ve had companies read form the wrong person’s resume to ask me questions… in front of me. I’ve had companies imply things about me that weren’t true and I’ve had companies speculate things they have no business in asking. When you’re unemployed, it’s easy to sit and be quiet about these things because you worry that if you speak up they won’t like you and you’ll miss the opportunity. I’m telling you right now, honestly, it’s far more important for you to stick up for yourself then to fall quiet and be seen as a push-over. Do not let a company ask you when you plan on having children. Do not let a company call you the wrong name. Let them know who you are and that you’re strong enough to speak up for yourself.

If it doesn’t feel right, it probably isn’t. I had a company tell me that in order to work for them I needed to pay a $4,000 security deposit. I was told that it’s a ‘normal thing and that all employees have to do it’. There is no security deposit required to work. None at all. There are, however, a lot of people in this world ready and willing to scam the vulnerable. If you feel as though someone is scamming you, they probably are. Be mindful of what companies are saying and trust your gut.

You are strong, you will get through this. Deep in the throws of unemployment, it can often feel as though you’re never going to get a job. It’s easy to get ‘down in the dumps’. Though it seems as though it’s never going to end, it will. You’re talented, smart and a viable candidate for many a positions. Don’t let your current situation define your future. Don’t let your head win.

Use each devastating blow as fuel to the fire. Having my job offer rescinded just three days before I was supposed to have my first day of work… it broke my heart. It really did. I think it’s important to remember in times like these, though, that I still got the job. I still was their candidate selected. And I dodged a bullet now that I’m not working for them. Turn those negative thoughts into positives and use it as motivation for your future job applications, future interviews and future opportunities.

Seek help. Accept help. Use help. Wherever you find it, however it comes about in your life, help is a good thing. Whether it’s someone to vent your frustrations to, someone to read over your cover letter or someone give you money, no questions asked, so your bills get paid… use the help. Don’t be too proud. If you’re lucky enough to have people offer help when you need it, take advantage of it when you get it. There’ll be a time in the future when you can pay it forward.

Remember your worth. There are a lot of companies in 2019 who list egregious qualifications and education requirements for positions where they’re only opting to pay minimum wage, if that (a lot of companies are trying to turn these positions into internships). Don’t ever allow a company to make you feel as though you’re worth less than you are as a means to pigeon hole you into a run of the mill position in a sub-standard office. If you have a means of holding out for the right position, do that. And if you don’t have those means, take the position that pays minimum wage, but take it ‘for-now’ and don’t stop looking for your dream job. Because it’s out there and you deserve it.

Find and effective means for managing stress. Unemployment is stressful as heck. You need an outlet to help you get through. So find that outlet and make use of it. Whether it’s yoga, a good book, screamo music or whatever helps you destress, find it and use it.

If it doesn’t work out, it’s probably for the best.

Don’t stop. Don’t ever stop.

Unemployment isn’t easy. It’s one of the most difficult things that anyone can go through, quite honestly. I think the biggest thing you can remember through a trying time like this is to just keep going. Keep your support system close and make use them, every step of the way. Whether it’s for a cup of coffee, help with your resume creation or just And don’t ever stop. In the words of Ayn Rand, “the world you desire can be won. It exists.. it is real.. it is possible.. it’s yours.”

I’m tired.

I’m so tired. I’m tired of painting a smile on my face. I’m tired of rejection. I’m tired of trying to explain who I am to people I’ve known my whole life. I’m tired of trying to be a neutral party when one side is so clearly out of line.

I’m tired of everything that I say being wrong. I’m tired of everything that I do not being enough. I’m tired of ending up on the losing end of every discussion. I’m just tired of talking. I’m tired of consistently falling short of everyone’s expectations. If they don’t know me, why do they get to have expectations of me?

I’m tired of considering their feelings when they never consider mine. I’m tired of being told there’s nothing wrong with me, that I’m just making it up. I’m tired of hearing ‘you’re not anxious, you’re just overdramatic’. I’m tired of being told ‘just cheer up’.

I’m so tired of being constantly watched. I don’t need to be inspected and I definitely don’t want my every move, my every action judged. I would love it if people could just let me be… leave me alone…

I’m tired of people taking advantage of me. I’m tired of everyone always wanting help from me but never wanting to help me.

I’m just tired.

I dread the night’s most.

Lately I’m finding that when the day winds down and everyone goes to bed for the night, that’s when my anxiety takes over. Swallowing every ounce of what’s good about my mood and my being, I turn into a twisted knot of explosive fear and delirious sadness.

I tried to stay positive about the world this week, I really did. I made a conscious effort every day to try and see the good in what was happening. The good was there. There was good in my life and I did see it. The problem was, the negatives seemed to swallow me whole.

I’m scared that I’m going to make the wrong decisions, do the wrong things or say something that cannot be taken back. I’m scared that I’ll never feel like myself again. As much as I can give myself pep-talks that fear doesn’t really seem to fade these days. Coping techniques help, for a little while. It always comes back though, seemingly stronger than before.

It’s a vicious hamster wheel I’m spinning in.

The struggles of being female part three.

There are some very real struggles that come with being female. I’ve written two posts about this in the past, and I’ve been feeling the struggle this week so I was motivated to add more to the list.

This was meant to be both satirical and serious, but the majority of them ended up being more serious than satirical. Either way, these are some very real struggles that come with being female.

  1. When women are mean to other women. This drives me crazy, and I really hope I’m not the only one to feel this way. I’m of the belief that, as females, we should be bringing each other up, not tearing each other down. Empowerment, that’s what the world needs more of.
  2. Crop tops. I hope I’m not alone in this. As a 30 year old female, I am passed the stage in my life in which I would like to be wearing half-a-shirt. Crop tops seem to be having ‘a minute’ right now, and they’re all I seem to find in every store that I go. What drives me even crazier about crop tops is that they’re essentially half of a shirt, and they seem to cost twice as much as the equivalent in the men’s section. While in a store called ‘Journeys’ the other day, a men’s Champion brand hoodie was $40. A women’s cropped champion hoodie (half a hoodie) was $86. How does that make any sense? I want a full shirt.
  3. Double standards. If a man sleeps with a lot of women, he’s seen as a ‘hero’ so to speak. If a woman sleeps with a lot of men, she’s treated as though she’s a whore. If a man marries a younger woman, he’s again seen as a ‘hero’ for landing a younger woman. If a woman marries a younger man, she’s seen as taking advantage, or gross, or any one of the mecca of negativity society places on her. Why is it right for men and wrong for women? Look at how women are reacting to the Priyanka Chopra/Nick Jonas marriage. Why do so many people take such issue with it? Why does it matter?
  4. Employers/potential employers asking inappropriate questions that are none of their business. Three days ago, I made the mistake of answering the phone for an unknown number and it was the CEO of a company that I’d applied for a position with. Over the course of the forty minutes that we spoke, I proclaimed that I was wanting to relocate to be closer to my boyfriend. He then decided it was an appropriate question to ask me when I plan on having children. I can’t even begin to explain the ways in which that is inappropriate, uncalled for and none of his damn business. I don’t think he appreciated my answer, and I think he knew he pissed me off. Though we spoke of the prospect of me coming for an interview, I have yet to hear anything from him since. Which is fine. If that’s how an employer operates, I likely don’t want to work there anyway.
  5. ‘Don’t be so emotional’. Firstly, I take issue with this statement being thrown at women because of the fact that it paints the subject of being emotional as being a negative trait. There’s nothing wrong with being in touch with your emotions. Women, females, girls alike are kind, caring and giving. And being emotional helps contribute to that kindness and caring that we give to the world. Secondly, I take issue with this statement being thrown at women because it contributes to the culture of toxic-masculinity that instills a belief in men they’re not allowed to be emotional. Being emotional is not a negative thing.
  6. Why is makeup and skincare so darn expensive? I love collecting makeup, I really do. I love dolling myself up, I love trying different types of skincare and seeing what works and what doesn’t. It seems ridiculous to me that we’re in a time where a Drugstore Foundation costs $20.99 and Sephora Foundations can cost $200. Economically speaking, there’s no need for the markups on these products to be so high. Companies are taking advantage of us because they know they can.
  7. Walking alone after dark can be really scary. It is. If you’re a female and you’ve ever had to do this, on a creepy street, on a dark street, right downtown the city, you likely know what it’s like to walk with your keys in your knuckles, or to call someone while you’re walking just so that you have someone to talk you through your walk. You know what it’s like to want to park as close to the door as possible, or under the nearest streetlamp so that it’s not as dark. It’s not that I’m overly fearful of the world, it’s just that if you take the proper precautionary steps, you can avoid running into bad situations.
  8. Fake pockets in women’s pants. This one makes me so ragey! I want my pockets. Why you gotta play me like this? I have things I need to carry. Why are so many women’s pants made to look as though they have pockets when they really don’t?
  9. Trying to understand what goes on inside the mind’s of men at any given moment in time. Because you can see the wheels spinning in their head, you ask them what’s up, what they’re thinking or how they’re feeling and you’re hit with ‘Not much, nothing and fine’. You know that’s not the full answer, but you can’t force them to tell you anything.

Read previous installments here:

9 Struggles that come with being a girl >

The Struggles of being a girl, part two >