Finding a job can almost feel like a job in itself. Today’s guest post focuses on what to do when no one wants to hire you.
No one wanted to hire me.
I applied for corporate jobs and minimum wage jobs, but I never heard back from anyone. I was scared and watched my bank account dwindle down with each passing month. I needed something FAST! I had panic attacks everyday. I was between jobs in the worst kind of way.
After 8 months, I eventually did land something and breathed a sigh of relief. But then a funny thing happened. After 3 months on the job, I started to get antsy again. I’d wake up every morning and say to myself, “This is it? There has to be something else out there.”
I still worked at that place for over a year, but still felt like I was between jobs. Maybe it’s because I have many interests—or a short attention span—I always seem to be on the lookout for the next move.
I guess you can say I’m always between jobs.
Many of us are between jobs in some way. Whether you’re in sheer panic mode, or just coasting along for your next move, here are 5 things you can do while you’re between jobs.
1. Teach yourself skills
I just read about a 17-year-old boy who built a mobile app that got the attention of Mark Zuckerberg and he’ll be interning at Facebook over the summer. How did this kid get started building apps? When he was 13, he taught himself coding with free online tutorials.
You don’t have to learn coding. In fact, I actually detest people who say, “Everyone should learn to code!” You don’t want me anywhere near your code.
Anyways, there are many in-demand skills that you can get the basics of for free online. Digital marketing, copywriting, video and sound editing, and design are just a few examples. I’ve actually landed interviews and jobs because of things I learned on my own time.
Oh yeah, there’s also a building called the library. I promise you’ll find lots of stuff there.
2. Start a business on the side
If you follow #1 it could also be the start of a neat little side business for some extra cash. Or you may already have something that lets you earn some money outside of your day job. But a side business could also turn into a new career on it’s own. This has happened to a few people I know and it’s happened to me recently.
My only regret is not starting sooner.
3. Explore different jobs
Pick 12 different careers that seem interesting. Then, for the next year spend a month immersed in each career. Read the top 2-3 books on it. Reach out to people working in those careers and get the low down on what it’s really like working those jobs. The next month, do the same for another career.
After a year, you’ll have “tried out” 12 different careers. You’ll also have a lot of great information and you’ll be able to make some educated next steps toward going after what you want.
4. Learn something that has no practical value
If you find yourself gravitating toward something, but not sure if it’ll have any use in the real world, do it anyway. Steve Jobs learned about calligraphy in his days at Reed College just because it seemed interesting.
When he made the first Mac, he remembered his calligraphy class and made the first computer with beautiful typography and Windows followed step. If Steve Jobs never learned about calligraphy you’d probably be reading this post in some weird, 80s-computer-looking font.
You never know when something you learn will come in handy.
5. Stay healthy
All this career stuff can seem like the most important thing in the world at times. I’m not going to tell you it’s not important. But, also remember there are important things that don’t always seem so urgent. Health is one of them.
“I’ll focus on getting in shape once I get this career stuff sorted out,” I would always tell myself. That never happened and I packed on some pounds and always felt tired and sluggish.
When I started paying more attention to health I found I had more energy and focus to do the first 4 items on this list.
Joe Choi is a copywriter, golfer, and overall health fanatic. He once wrote and published a book called “Happy Foods” on a challenge in 11 days. He occasionally writes on elephant journal and Thought Catalog. He also shares his personal stories and experiences on his blog: fescuefairways.com. Connect with him on twitter @jchoi007
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