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 just submitted a job application and won’t you know it, I goofed up. I did a bit of digging and figured out the name of the hiring manager. But the job posting on LinkedIn didn’t have the hiring manager’s name or title. In various drafts, I had the name in but I finally took it out at the end just in case I was wrong. So I used the dreaded “Dear Hiring Manager”.
After I submitted it on the company’s website, I noticed who the job reported to. It didn’t have the name but her title. Of course, the title was for that person’s name that I had. I had even gone on her LinkedIn. What ticked me off was that I went through the posting a few times but missed this. I’m just kicking myself now.
The job is at one of my target companies but it’s only a 1 year contract. And the salary is a lot lower than what I used to make. But I need to get my foot in the door.
I’ve forgotten how hard it is to look for a job. I remember chatting with my colleagues several years ago. They had updated resumes ready to go in case “something” happened. They found time to network and to keep up with the industry. Over time I stopped doing a lot of this. Now I’m kicking myself for not carving out some time to do this. Maybe I got too lazy.
But I can’t change the past so life goes on.
My sister lent me a book on resumes (she writes resumes for others as a sideline). I compared some of them to mine and was aghast at how horrible mine was. It wasn’t too long ago when I was the hiring manager reviewing resumes. I spent about 10 to 15 seconds per resume. I’m pretty sure most people spend even less time. So I’m rewriting it again. I think I’m going to have 2 basic versions. One that focuses on transferable skills as I want to keep my options open. And the other one with a focus on IT management skills.
And finally, I do get anxiety attacks – relatively mild. I just take a few deep breaths and face them head on. I started to freak out about my financial situation. Then I took a good look again at my finances and assumed what would happened in a worst case scenario, best case and most likely case. I felt better after that.
I still have a few weeks before they kick me out. I better make the most out of my remaining time.
I’m not ready for a sugar daddy… yet.
There were many thoughts floating around my head last night. Should I be happy that my time at my workplace will wind down in a few months? I should be since it’s a large source of stress. But what about finances? How long can I hold out? What can I cut back? What jobs should I go for? A voice gleefully shouts “Boy Matt, you got a lot of worries ahead.”
But one called out a bit louder last night and urged me to go for a walk. I looked out the window. A fine mist was coming down. I needed some fresh air anyways so I bundled up and went out. The fine rain became tiny ice pellets but it melted quickly when it landed on my eyes and face.
I passed the homeless guy who sits in the streetcar shelter. He’s a regular there. Sometimes I see the cops talking to him but it’s all friendly chit chat – mostly checking to see how he is doing. At the community centre, I see a couple of worn out sleeping bags piled by the door. The mattress is a large piece of cardboard. The other mattress is a wooden skid. At the McDonald’s, I see a guy sitting inside with a large soft drink cup. His face looks defeated. There’s another guy counting the change in his hand before going in. I round the corner and at the cheap coffee place, there’s another person who glares back at me when I look in. I only see the small coffee cup on the table.
The fine mist has returned and chased away the tiny ice pellets. I head back to my place. Everything was quiet. All is good.