Every summer, university students across the world jump to LinkedIn and Indeed to pick up a summer job and I have joined them. For a while, I was putting off job-hunting, while I decided whether or not I was going to be staying in Vancouver for the summer. But as much as making the decision to go home has taken some of the pressure off, it also has made me accept the reality that it's time to buckle down and find a job.
In an old post (see below), I talked about how stressful being a university student is. With finals right around the corner (7 days to be exact), this stress has not subsided at all. And on top of all the usual life things that need to occur, I now need to job hunt. This means revamping resumes, writing cover letters, and explaining why I, over all the other qualified university students, are the best for the job.
And I'm not going to lie, at first the job hunt was fun. It was fun imagining all the fun things I could do this summer, all the exciting new opportunities four months out of school would give me. But this excitement descended into madness fairly quickly. I soon realized that I was caught in what I call "The Work Experience Loop".
The Work Experience Loop, while incredibly stupid, is quite simple to understand. It is the situation where a job requires you to have work experience to get the job, but not being able to get work experience, because all jobs want you to have work experience. See the problem?
And I'm not saying that I haven't had work experience, but it's hard to get a job that's not retail or service without work experience. I was looking at an internship (specifically for university students) in the music industry yesterday and it asked for 3 years of work experience in digital and social media marketing. THREE YEARS. Three years ago I was still in high school.
The second problem is my Long Term Plan. A Long Term Plan is your endgame, the job that you see your career path ultimately ending on. As much as I've loved working in retail, selling jeans and t-shirts isn't really where I see myself post-university. There's only so many times I can say the words "buy one get one half off" before my head explodes; retail fun but it doesn't get me up in the morning. My Long Term Plan lies somewhere else. And I've been putting off settling on my Long Term Plan for so long, working odd jobs here and there avoiding the fact that I'm entering my early 20's and it's time to figure out a direction for the next couple years (I am well aware my parents are somewhere reading this saying "it's time to get your ass in gear").
Frankly, I've been putting it off because of the Work Experience Loop. Afraid to apply to a job where I don't have a background in, Plus, no matter how you frame it, getting a "no" sucks. And knowing I don't have the work experience I need means I'm subjecting myself to a whole lot of "no". Starting something new and accepting the fact that I'm in and on my way to being an adult makes me a little weak in the knees. I don't understand how taxes work and I still don't have the self-restraint to not binge-watch Netflix, I'm definitely not ready to be an adult. The idea of settling and going for my Long Term Plan makes me want to throw up just a little bit.
So that's where I'm at right now. That limbo between being a student and being unemployed. There really is no silver lining to this story until I find a job, so that's it for now. Good luck in your job hunting, and hopefully yours is going better than mine.
From me, with love, to you,
What's going on?
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