Gathering Date: August 2012
The overwhelming theme of our gathering this past month was the woes of employment…or lack thereof. Several of us shared our frustration with colleagues, feelings of being undervalued by our managers, and even overwhelmed by our workload. On the other hand, there are a few of us on what seems to be a never-ending job hunt. If you find yourself in any of those categories, my solution is rather simple: change your (un)employmentality. Trust me, I know it’s easier said than done, but I can guarantee you it can be done.
Some time ago, I saw someone post something on a social network that read, “My job is simply how I afford to do the things that I truly enjoy.” And then it clicked. While I don’t love my job, what I don’t love even more is having no salary, no medical benefits and no paid vacation! I am a big advocate for doing what you love, but sometimes what you love doesn’t pay the bills. So if I operate with the mindset that my job is my means for maintaining a certain fulfilling lifestyle outside of the office, then pesky colleagues, difficult bosses and day-to-day stresses will not bother me as much. That same mindset might actually contribute to progress on the job.
For the unemployed among us, start with a simple shift in perspective by thinking of your status as “between jobs” rather than unemployed. “Between jobs” carries a sense of optimism that your next job is on the horizon! Don’t be ashamed of your employment status. Telling others that you are “between jobs” may lead to learning about an opportunity you didn’t know existed. Also, consider partnering with someone else in the job hunt and search for each other instead of for yourself. This alleviates some of the pressure and allows you to shift your focus a bit. Compare it to scoping out a potential date for your friend versus one for yourself. It is so much easier!
For those who are looking, your dream job is out there waiting for you. So until your dream becomes your reality, you have two options: whine about it or find a way to cheese.
Natalie Dean is the Founding Vine of Whine & Cheese. Her founding chapter is located in the Washington, D.C. metropolitan area.