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When you're in high school every teacher, advisor, and mentor preach about the importance of going to college to create a better life for yourself. They swear by it. They advise you strongly to spend thousands of dollars on classes, books, and housing so one day you can graduate and find a job that will pay for all that debt you acquired. I'm here to tell you the truth: they LIED.
I graduated with my undergraduate degree in June of 2018. I spent four years working extremely hard to maintain good grades so I could continue to receive financial aid. I listened to the advice and I finished strong and on time. Here I am four months later, blogging, unemployed, extremely broke, and living 3,000 miles away from home. Awesome.
Now, I have only been looking for a job since the beginning of August because I moved 3,000 miles away. But I am about ready to throw in the towel. I can't even get a job at a restaurant as a hostess and in the past three months I have applied to 16 different jobs. SIXTEEN. I have had two interviews. TWO. I don't think this would irritate me quite as bad as it does if the most common response from employers wasn't: "we are looking for someone with more experience."
This statement, every time I hear it, makes me want to throw up. I'm sorry but how is any person out of college supposed to get any kind of experience if no employer is willing to TRAIN new employees? I think it's ridiculous that most employers are searching for perfection but are unable to train new employees to achieve this perfection.
I understand that in certain work environments and for certain positions it's best for the future employee to have past experience that will help them succeed. However, I think it's lazy of an employer to turn away a perfectly capable human with the want to learn simply because of lack of experience as a waitress.
However, with all the stress and anxiety that follows being unemployed there are some perks as well. I know I'm not alone on this journey for a job as I battle my way through my first year of graduate school, so here's my advice for those on this journey with me:
Take Advantage of The Free Time:
Find a hobby, call your mom, join a club. I personally have found out a lot about myself with all the free time I have had. I started writing and freeing my mind of stresses that I have carried with me for years. When the going gets tough, the tough gets going so make the best of the time you have and have some fun!
Get Out of Bed:
I know it's tempting to spend all your time in bed reading, writing, watching a movie, sleeping, etc. However, it's very important to get up and get moving. Clean your house/apartment, exercise, organize your life like you always wanted but you never had time. Taking advantage of the time you have is important but don't take this as an excuse to sleep the day away, get up and get out!
Talk It Out:
Bottling up your emotions is never the answer, it only leads to more suffering. Having someone to talk to on the phone, DMing over social media, a tinder date, a chat with the barista at your favorite coffee stand, or ask a friend out to dinner/lunch. Whatever you choose to do just talk it out. Having so much free time can be lonely and loneliness can feel crippling and sadden even the happiest of people. Talk to someone about how you are feeling and hang in there, you're not alone!
So, to all the 22 year olds, or even 50 year olds, out there that are experiencing the same lost feeling that comes with being unemployed: if you find a job, give me a call.