11.08.2014

Job Hunting Week, day six: Lowering your standards

Welcome to Job Hunting Week. Looking for a job is my whole life at the moment, and looking for a job is so not fun. None of the content of this week will be revolutionary or even anything you haven’t thought of yourself, but I want to get it all out there in the open. Let’s commiserate together about the worst parts of job searching and what makes it so truly awful.

Day six: Lowering your standards


Job hunting for an extended period of time, especially when you don’t currently have a full-time job to rest on, is really discouraging because there’s a balance you have to strike. When you’re searching while you do have a full-time-with-benefits job, you can be really picky and only apply to things you think you would absolutely love. But when you really need a job like right now, you can't be quite as picky.


Here's the problem, though: Do you want to take a job you're going to hate just to have one? You'll just end up job searching right away anyway, so is that even better?


So when you first get let go, you only apply to great jobs you think you'll love. And then the rest of your job search consists of renegotiating your standards over and over and over.


What happens is you end up talking yourself into jobs you already know aren't good for you. If you stare at a job description long enough, you'll see something you like in it. Sometimes that can be enough to convince yourself it wouldn't be that bad.


The worst thing about compromising is that by taking a job you know you won't love -- or even like -- you're just delaying the inevitable. You'll eventually want a job more in line with your experience or education, and if you take something now you might not be able to switch very fast when the right opportunity does come along. At the very least, it's hard to take time off for interviews right when you start a job, or you may not want to look like a job hopper, which might make you want to stay even longer just for show.

It's a daily struggle. I recently started including customer service positions in my search. I'm trying to be Kelly from The Office, okay?



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