Job searching is for many an exercise in frustration. First of all many see the whole job search as a tedious way to spend their days; applying for jobs, getting few positive results for a lot of effort, going to interviews where they will be judged and usually rejected, then doing it again day after day, and all the while supposed to be smiling and upbeat.
I personally don’t agree with this characterization of the process, but many see things this way. So it’s not hard to understand why people whom otherwise would be positive souls sometimes become embittered, difficult to be around, and often spew out their thoughts with venom and anger. If you ever find yourself on the receiving end of this, how can you help but take their words personally?
The inherent danger however for the person themselves is this: the very people who may be in a position to help aid the job seeker may themselves be turned off from wishing to do so, and the result is the job seeker becomes more isolated, more frustrated and ultimately spends additional time going it alone. Employers will find you unattractive.
Being around someone who is launching verbal tirades, sees the world as black and white, right and wrong and who suddenly has become an expert in all areas and doesn’t miss an opportunity to give you their indisputable opinion on everything isn’t fun. Yes, these kind of people have much to apologize for in terms of their behaviour; behaviour which is inexcusable. However, it serves the rest of us well to forgive what we can recognizing that some people have passed their point of endurance and are floundering and coping the only way they are capable of. Having a jaded view on life and work may already have cost them much in terms of jobs and opportunities, so if you or I can help them in some way to grab hold of some positive relationship(s) in their lives, that says much about us.
But let me turn to you the frustrated and jaded job seeker. Maybe I’ll get an earful in writing at the conclusion of this piece. Maybe I’ll also get a word or two of support for telling you what you need to hear but are missing. We shall see.
First of all, I acknowledge that you are going through a tremendously frustrating job search. I can’t pretend to know first-hand what your individual circumstances are, but it’s not hard to guess. You could be in a situation where you have many years of experience, you’re aging and that’s becoming a factor, your health may be a concern for employers, your skills and qualifications while impressive are becoming out-dated; after all you haven’t done the work itself for quite a while since you’ve been out of work.
On top of this, you’re pretty sure you know how to look for work. All the hours you’ve put into job searching however are yielding few if any positive results at all, and nobody enjoys putting out a lot of effort and getting nothing in return except rejection. You really do feel like screaming and telling people how it is, and because so many people you know who claim to be experts happen to have good paying jobs, they can’t possibly know as much as you do about being unemployed. I get that.
But listen. That small chip on your shoulder that has grown into a boulder isn’t making you very attractive. You’ve either lost or are close to losing the support and help of the very people you need to help you get back into the workforce. Don’t fool yourself, you DO need help. It’s getting harder for people to separate your behaviour from you yourself, and your behaviour needs attention.
If you’re a walking time-bomb, just about to go off at the slightest odd look or misinterpreted comment someone makes, you need more help than you know, and that’s a huge problem. Talking frankly and openly with a professional Mental Health Counsellor is maybe long overdue. You might not think it’s you that has a problem, but it is unfortunately. This is the right person to vent with, express your honest feelings, unburden yourself to and pour it all out on. Bottling it up until you explode isn’t working and it’s not likely to.
There are three professional people you should be tapping into; your Doctor, a Mental Health Counsellor, and an Employment Counsellor or Advisor. The doctor will look at your physical health, the next your mental health, and the last your employability. This group as part of your support team may not only help you get your working life back on track, they may just save your life and personal relationships period.
People around you will only tolerate and forgive a certain amount of your anger. Hopefully you sincerely want to regain that positive old self you used to be and can be once again. Those around you want that too.
I’m not judging you or your situation. I’m telling you what others who are too close to you perhaps want to tell you but are afraid to. Maybe you should read this a few times before saying anything to anyone and let it sink in.
Here’s hoping you get the help you need and the eventual employment you want so bad.
Okay, let me have it.