I want to bring up something that has been getting under my skin recently. I’m exhausted with hearing everyone complaining and moaning about their job, place they live, or just their life in general. Now, I’m guilty of complaining about my job and I think it’s good for everyone to vent their frustrations- those aren’t the people I’m referring to. The people I’m speaking to are the people (young and old) who are truly miserable and talk about changing their life/job but when push comes to shove, they take no action to better their situation.
Somewhere along the way we’ve forgotten that we’re in control of our own lives. It’s like we’ve allowed the world to kill our drive and independence. We’ve believed the myth that other people or circumstances are in control when really we are the only person to blame for how miserable or happy we are…for the most part. It’s always some type of excuse with the people who hate their current situation to keep them from trying to better their lives. They believe their boss that continues to tell them things will get better (even though things never do), they become comfortable in their current setting and are afraid of a change, or the worst one… they’re afraid of being inadequate in a new job setting.
While all of these are pretty typical reasons people refuse to try and better their situation, let me share my experience with some of you in hopes that maybe this will push you to give something new a shot.
I graduated in 2013 and moved back to my hometown, which originally I thought wouldn’t be so bad but turns out things weren’t like they used to be in the glory days and I was miserable. Although I had a pretty decent job and my own place to live, I hated it. I’ve always wanted to live in a bigger city with other places to eat besides a Ruby Tuesday and Outback Steakhouse, and I didn’t want to be stuck in the same town, doing the same things, with the same people my whole entire life. Life is too short for that in my opinion.
To make a long story short, I decided on the career path I wanted to take, and even though I had little experience in this field, I came to the conclusion the worst thing I can hear is a “no” and started blanketing the U.S. of A. with my résumé. Now, just to give you a little background, there was nothing overly impressive about my résumé, but I knew if I could just get in front of someone I could win them over- that proved to be more difficult than I thought.
Some of you are going to think this number is inflated for this article, but I assure you it’s not. I probably sent out 70 different résumés (that’s low balling the number) to advertising agencies from the West Coast to the East Coast. If you name a large city in the US, I guarantee you I applied to at least a few ad agencies there. The problem was so many of these ad agencies required “Agency experience.” Unfortunately, I chose a career path that is pretty difficult to get into, especially for someone with zero connections.
I’ll never forget when I finally received my first response, a rejection letter from 360i in NYC. Honestly, even though it was a rejection letter, it felt really good that a company at least acknowledged that I existed. I strongly considered printing the email and hanging it above my bed just to remind me that at least someone thought I was worthy of a response. That’s how bad it was. I know some of you are thinking my résumé must have been god awful, but I had it checked by numerous people to ensure it looked as polished as possible.
All-in-all, I totaled 3 responses from the 70 résumés I sent and received 1 interview opportunity in Nashville. Thankfully, I crushed the interview and ended up getting the job.
The biggest thing holding people back is their fear of being told they’re not good enough. Too many people are afraid to hear the word no, and they’re letting this cripple their quality of life. To be rejected over 60 times was tough, and my self-esteem was probably the lowest it’s ever been at that point, but I kept trying. I refused to let some random executive in a suit whose only knowledge of me is from a sheet of paper tell me I wasn’t good enough for that career field because my degree wasn’t fancy enough, or because I didn’t have the necessary “agency experience”…and you shouldn’t either.
I fully recognize there’s not a job or career out there that’s perfect, but if you’re completely miserable in what you’re doing, or where you’re living, make the effort to change your situation. Nobody is going to do it for you, and happiness isn’t just going to knock on your door one day. You have to go out there and put the work in to go get it.
So, stop bitching and do something about it..