I'm sitting here two weeks into being unemployed and without a plan for the first time since I was 15. This is uncomfortable to say the least. Before I even get into the rest of my current story and how I came to the decision that writing about it was a good idea, let me just acknowledge that this will maybe be a little whiny and self-pitying. Hopefully not all the time as there are many more important things going on in the world right now, but this is where I'm at today: in a little self-involved pit of woe. Bear with me.
I say I'm a hot mess because it's kind of literally and figuratively true at the moment. I haven't showered in two days, I've barely left my apartment, and I'm wearing too many layers so sweat is starting to form all over my body. My headspace isn't much better. I'm teetering between optimism and pessimism as I go through the exhausting process of looking for work. Why is it so mentally and physically draining??
This morning I was turned down by a company that seemed pretty promising. Medium size, convenient to public transportation, perks galore, dog-friendly, "cool and hip" aesthetic. Check, check, check--consider me sold. I made it through to the final round of their rigorous interview process so I more or less assumed I had it in the bag. How very millennial of me, right?
Here's the wacko part. I don't think I truly even wanted the job, at least not until the bounty of perks were glittering in front of me. I felt an internal resistance to the role multiple times, like a small voice saying, "I don't want to take on those responsibilities. That's not going to be fulfilling. That won't make me happy." So why the hell did I keep moving forward and putting my time and energy into it?
My ego was in the driver's seat, that's why. I picture it to be like Gollum sometimes, just singularly focused on getting the shiny ring with the alluring promise of power despite its danger. Maybe that's an extreme comparison, but my ego really wanted those perks! Not to mention that getting the job would have met my immediate need for income and given me some sense of purpose again. Yes, I hate to admit it, but I tend to associate work with self-worth and that is a whole other topic for another day.
If it sounds like I am feeling sorry for myself, it's because I am a little bit. My inner critic is really loud even when things are going well, so you can imagine the increase in volume when things aren't so great. It is really challenging for me to get it to shut up. And yet, despite how shitty I feel right now, I know this is my current reality for a reason. Buckle up for some woo woo because here it comes.
I believe the Universe (intentionally capitalized) is trying to give me a much needed lesson in patience, faith, and trust. Like I said before, I am the type of person to always have a plan and right now I don't. I left my last job somewhat abruptly after only a couple of months because it didn't feel right for me nor did it make me happy. That doesn't sound like something I'd do! In fact, I was at my last two companies before that for six years EACH. Am I having a mental breakdown or something?
Actually I think it's the opposite. My mind and soul are waking up and urging me to live my life more intentionally. Don't take jobs just because they offer shiny perks or renown. Do work that you're proud to share because it excites you. Stop checking off boxes for the sake of checking them off or getting external approval. Start doing things because they make you happy and align with your values. Figure out what your true values are in the first place and watch how things fall into place as you let them guide you.
I hear you, Universe. I am a hot mess, but I am ready to find and create magic.