The Job Hunt: It’s as inevitable as growing old, as necessary as breathing, and as annoying as the kid who always raised his hand in class with the right answer. In my experience (which has so far been three months in “the hunt”), I typically receive the same three responses from relatives:
1) Where have you been applying?
2) I’m sure something will come up.
3) You know, it took me ‘X’ months and ‘X’ job applications to get my first job. It’ll work out.
My responses, all held dry underneath the umbrella of politeness are as follows:
1) Literally everywhere, but I’m sure something will happen in time.
2) Oh, most definitely! It’s just a matter of patience.
3) Well, I’m only on month three. I suppose I have a long way to go.
In my family, politeness is probably of the utmost importance, perched up in the ranks next to cleanliness and dental hygiene. It’s sufficient to say that “talking back” won’t only result in complete, familial shame, but also an immediate removal from the family newsletter that exists only through tacit consent and word of mouth.
What they don’t know and will soon find out, is that i’m screaming in my head for everybody to stay quiet and let me do what four years and $65,000 taught me to do: work under the stress of society. As of right now, I am seventy-two applications deep, have accrued eight rejections, and sixty-four non replies.
And they wonder why the job hunt is stressful?
I am finding myself in the most peculiar and perhaps most common situation in regards to this hunt; I am stuck in the phase where I have begun asking myself even more unanswerable questions: What if the first job I’m offered is that one I pounce at, thus shutting out all other possibilities out there? What if there are better ones? How do you know? Will someone please tell me, because I am scared. The answers are out there, but they’re hiding. Hiding beneat the doubt and uncertainty and the unknown. A part of me understands; I understand why it’s selective and why it is the way it is, but at the same time I want to dismantle it bit by bit just so I can get an inch through the door. Yes, my cover letter is a template and no, that doesn’t mean I care any less about the job.
Between the onslaught of questions from family burrowing into the dura over my temporal lobe and my imposed narcissism on behalf of these unknown employers, I’m at my wits end. I can say that it’ll get better and that something will work itself out in due time, and it will, i’m sure of it; but those same responses get tired, tired to the point of ineffectiveness and redundancy. It’s so overdone that I can play backwards and forwards the exact mannerisms associated with the responses:
A tilt of the head, a gentle touch on the hand, *cue subtle sigh*:
“It’ll work out. I know it will. You just have to give it time. Life will out, my friend. Life will out.”
I understand this initial response to it, I do. But despite all of the reassurances, let’s not pretend that you didn’t just steal that phrase from Grey’s Anatomy. From someone who is a fellow hunter, I will start my stating the obvious: the hunt is hard.
It’s harder than a Rubix Cube and rarely yields the same “satisfying” results. But, there’s a reason why the cliches are cliches and the phrases are redundant; it’s because they’re true.
So, I’ll say this with a tilt of my head, a gentle touch on the hand, and I’ll *commence the subtle sigh*:
It’s a tough world out there. But I’m tougher. You’re tougher.
And it’s hunting season, so gear up.