I was talking with a fellow job seeker the other day. She told me her LinkedIn is finally starting to get a lot of visits. She had followed the advice of a career coach. I did a quick check of the coach’s rate and it was $120 / hr. I have no idea if that is reasonable.
After chatting with her, I went to her LinkedIn to see what I can do to spruce up my own. This is the part of job hunting I’m not entirely comfortable. I’m more of a private person. But I know using LinkedIn is part of the process. So what will I need to beef up my profile? It’s not getting a lot of hits.
Maybe I should take some tips from some of you who are using Tinder, Grindr, or Jack’d. Should I emphasize my transferable skills to show how versatile I am? I can’t play hard to get. So maybe I should add a sultry, hungry look. I just need a plate of fried rice in front of me. What are employers looking for? The tops of course. I mean someone who rose from the bottom to the top of the organization.
I understand the pain and pleasure of working long hours. You burn both ends of the candles, watching the wax slowly drip. Maybe that’s what employers want. Someone who can handle pain. I’ll add private photos too. But it’ll be pixelated of course.
Sometimes I have to make this tedious process seem like fun.
“What I am trying to say here is that a calling takes work. Finding yours will require a fear-facing journey that will last a lifetime. And where does it begin? With awareness. With discovering what your life is already saying to you. And as you attempt to uncover this mystery, consider one more question, a much more constructive one: What happens if you don’t this? That’s what should really scare you.”
Goins, Jeff. The Art of Work: A Proven Path to Discovering What You Were Meant To Do. Nashville, Nelson Books, 2015.
After all these years, I still don’t know what I want or was meant to do. How did you find out what your calling was? What was your journey like? If you’re still looking, how is it so far?
Someone recently asked me why I wanted to change careers. I had done well at my previous career in IT. She thought that starting over might be a waste of my talent and skills. It would affect me financially. So why take a risk? I should at least consider going for a less demanding position but in the same field. It would be a lot easier than trying to land a different job in a different field.
But I’ve lost my passion for IT. I got into that field by luck and fortunately I did well. I spent most of my time in management and not in a technical role. I don’t want to go back to the long hours and the constant stress of trying to do more with less. I got some decent awards, the pay was good but it’s was not growing.
But it’s been 2 years since my last paycheque. From time to time, I do second guess myself. Am I doing the right thing? I think I am. Am I being stubborn or determined? What’s discouraging is seeing some of my peers getting jobs. There’s a person in my networking group who’s been out for about a month. He’s been on several interviews already with 2 more this week. I also saw a job posting at one of my target companies. he pay wasn’t the greatest. I would have to commute, pay for parking and work evenings and weekends. But it would have gotten me a foot in the door. I asked my cousin who works there. He told me the competition will be tough. I didn’t have the minimum 2 years in that field. He knows there will be many others that have better qualifications. I didn’t apply and sulked for a day.
I remind myself to stay positive, stay focused and keep my sword sharp. Opportunities will eventually find their way to me and I need to be prepared.
Lately a few people that I know have found jobs. We all go to the same job counseling company and it’s good that they have landed. Some are from a networking group that meet weekly. I know how hard they’ve worked and the struggles they’ve gone through.
As for me, I have to continue to stay focus and not get complacent. It’s so easy to take teh foot off the gas pedal. I just have to continue sharpening my resume, improving my networking, honing my interview skills and be more comfortable marketing myself.
But if any of you want to fork over a few hundred grand (Canadian), I would be okay with that too.
On an unrelated note, I sent a note to a friend of mine who has stomach cancer. I just wanted to let him know I was still thinking of him. He replied back and is scheduled for 8 rounds of chemo and surgery afterwards. A week later, he sent me a photo of him with his bald head. He’s still smiling with his wife behind him. He told me it’s all in God’s hands now. I hope he’ll be able to defy the odds and pull through.
I was chatting with an ex colleague today. We talked about the challenges at my former workplace, what’s going on in her life and her health. She thanked me for always being a sympathetic ear, providing good advice and making her laugh. She was part of my trusted network and we helped each other with a lot of deals.
What’s interesting is that we both didn’t meet each other until I left my company. We both worked from home. And when we did have to go into the office, our schedules never meshed. So we never met but had developed a great working relationship.
I told her today that some people are a bit surprised I develop these types of relationships with people I’ve never met. She believes we knew each other from a previous life. I don’t know if that’s true. It’s sort of like the relationship I develop here with fellow bloggers. I’ve gotten to know some of you very well. I’m always touched when people feel they can trust me and confide in me.
Life is good.
I’ve been sleeping in the past few days. This morning, I woke up around 9:30. I looked at my phone and didn’t even hear the alarm. I also missed some text messages. Good thing they weren’t important. When my days aren’t productive, I tend to stay up late trying to make up for it. This just perpetuates the problem.
My back is also starting to stiffen up. I should restart all those exercises that my chiropractor has asked me to do. I have a basic Ikea dining room chair that I use as my “office” chair. I saw a store that sells refurbished office furniture and I might buy one. It’s a good brand (Steelcase) and I’ve sat in quite a few of those chairs when I was working.
It’s also been perplexing for me these past few months. I’m so easily distracted by social media – especially US politics. I have to get back to some of the good habits I developed when I was working.
I follow a lot of accounts on Instagram. It may surprise you to hear that some of them are fashion designers, planes, cats and fitness trainers. There’s a local guy that I follow who seems to know what he’s doing. He’s Chinese and seems to be well liked within his community. I’m not really a fitness guy but I like his tips.
In his last few postings, he mentioned his latest podcast and it’s his first time interviewing a guest, a local trainer – another Asian guy. In accompanying Instagram Stories (sort of like Snapchats – they disappear within 24 hrs), he mentioned how he’s trying to get out of his comfort zone more by doing podcasts and interviews. Getting out of my comfort zone is something I like to do too so I related to him.
He started to post some clips from his podcasts – nothing unusual. It was just 2 guys chatting and trying to act cool. But in one of these clips, his guest seemed to make fun of a question. The guest trainer went on about people who want to get as big (physically) as him. He started to laugh and swear. The host started to laugh too. I think the message the guest was trying to say was it’s not just working out, it’s the dedication required to workout when you’re tired, it requires rest and a good diet.
But the tone was of elitism and exclusivity. Both of us are “in” and you’re not. While I have been known to use 4 letter words (I can swear in Greek too but that’s another story), watching the 2 of them swearing and laughing stung. They could have done a lot better and be more professional instead of acting like kids. Turn the moment into something educational and maybe even inspirational.
I’m just venting a bit.