Unemployment

Unemployment is not for the fainthearted. It takes a strong constitution to sift through pages of job listings online and in print, to modify the resume and cover letter, to reach out to prospective employers with your heart in your hand, praying they won’t smell the desperation.

The interview itself is remarkably similar to a first date. You dress your best, trying on all three of your suits with each dress shirt you own and various heels, trying to strike the right note. Then there is the standard conversation, the awkward pauses, the attempt to come off normal and desirable. Afterward you sit by the phone or the computer with your fingers crossed that you’ll get a call back.

However, when they do call back and you find yourself with a job, you immediately begin second guessing it. Maybe you didn’t ask for enough money. Maybe you will see parallels in your workday and staff interactions with the ones in The Office. You start to feel trapped, routine sets in, and eventually you start looking around to see what else is out there. I would give anything to be at that stage!

My first lead at the marketing firm tanked. Another opportunity presented itself – this one in office administration – but the adage “If it seems too good to be true, it probably is” kept me from pursuing it. I mean who wouldn’t want to earn $4,000 a month plus 10 percent commission only working three to four hours a day? But at some point you have to ask yourself, is this legal? moral? a scam? I didn’t stick around long enough to find out.

Ah, well. I’ve only been back in town seven days. I should find my own motivational poster with the word Patience looming above a distressed young woman at a computer screen, papers filling her desk. Take it from me kids, looking for work is the hardest work there is.

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