At the end of 2013, I found myself extremely frustrated with my job situation. I had just gotten laid off by a non-profit I really wanted to work for, leaving me in a panic. I thought for sure I would get hired on permanently with said non-profit, but thanks to my “lack of work experience and skills,” I was left unemployed with a dwindling bank account. After constant job rejections during the next couple months, I decided to put my career goals on hold, and instead, take a part-time restaurant job. Of course, working as a server again wasn’t my ideal work situation, but at least I would be making good money again. (My non-profit paychecks were low, and my unemployment checks were EVEN LOWER.) So in mid-January, I took a part-time serving job at a fine-dining steakhouse, and in mid-April, I took a part-time job at a non-profit. Since April, I’ve been pretty content with working full-time between these two part-time jobs, because since the beginning of 2014, my mentality has been all about paying off my debt/saving money and working whatever job(s) in order to do so. But now? I think I’m ready to start working on finding a full-time, salaried, career job again.
I know what you might be thinking: “Typical millenial. Never satisfied and always wanting the next best thing. You haven’t even been at your current jobs for a year! Why start job searching again?” Yes, I know, I will be the first to admit I’ve had SIX different jobs since I graduated college 3 1/2 years ago. Truth is, ever since I turned 29 in May, I’ve been thinking a lot about my career path again. I have less than a year until I turn 30, which is when Chris and I said we would seriously consider starting a family. This means I need to figure out my career shit, and soon! Because the last thing I want in life is to be a pregnant waitress.
So what am I going to start doing in order to figure out my career path and find a full-time job? Here’s what I have in mind:
- Start job searching daily. Obviously.
- Start attending networking events again. I haven’t been to one since December. I went to so many last year when I was career-focused and found them to be really helpful with meeting new people and improving my networking skills.
- Work on improving my job skill set. At my current non-profit job, I’m learning a lot about marketing, social media management, and Microsoft Office programs. I want to improve these skills by working on them during my free-time (reading books on these topics, taking classes, etc.)
Last, but not least, I need to figure out exactly what I want to do for my career! Yes, I’m 29 and still figuring this out. Surely, I can’t be the only woman on the planet who has a fear of commitment when it comes to deciding what she wants to do for the rest of her life? If it’s any consolation, I have my career path narrowed down to three possible choices:
- Non-profit: I’ve always loved the idea of having a fulfilling job that allows me to help people in need, which is probably why I originally wanted to be a teacher. However, the more experience I get in the non-profit sector, the more I learn that most of the entry-level jobs are in fundraising. Fundraising jobs are extremely stressful and require a lot of night/weekend work. The closer I get to turning 30 and starting a family, the less appealing a job in non-profit fundraising sounds.
- Event planning for a fine-dining restaurant: I could really see myself doing this as a career. I’m a planner through and through. I will plan the shit out of your birthday celebration/bachelerotte party/baby shower. I live and breathe Google calendar and Excel spreadsheets. I basically have the next year of my life planned. Throw in the fact that I have 10+ years of fine dining experience and BOOM. Perfect job for me.
- Full-time blogger: I read a ton of blogs authored by mothers who blog for a living and are able to help support their familes. THIS sounds like the ideal job for when I become a mom. Make money from doing something I love? Work from home? Help support the family but still be able to stay home with the kids? Where do I sign up?!
I’m nervous to start job searching again because I know it’s going to involve a lot of rejection and feelings of I’m-not-qualified-enough-and-no-one-will-hire-me, but I can’t avoid it forever. The good thing is I’m in a much better place financially than I was six months ago, so the urgency of finding a full-time job right away is low. I’m going to be able to focus and take my time with this. Regardless of how long it takes, I’m hoping that this round of job searching lands me the full-time, salaried, career job I’ve been seeking since college.
Are you happy with your current job/career? If not, what are you doing to find something better?