Since this travel job with admissions will end in mid-November, I’m on the job hunt again. And at this point, I really think it’s only right for Willie Nelson to write Part II of his legendary tune, this one entitled On The Job Search Boards Again. It would make for good background music as I scroll through all of the listings and look for sharp objects and/or one-way tickets to Tahiti.
However, I found these two blog posts the other day just as I was teetering on the edge of Monster.com turning me into a Monster myself. Both are from markedly different genres and both pertain to jobs in writing, but really, I think both speak to how to do anything you really want to do:
1 – A sports perspective from Football Outsiders
I want to point out one last thing: none of these things I recommended are economically crippling to do. I can empathize with the powerful sense of ineptness that comes with being a recent or soon-to-be graduate. You’re surrounded by people telling you that the job market has changed forever, and that the economy is bad. You likely don’t have much experience in your career path if you’ve tried to go through college. You can enter a world of paralysis by analysis just trying to find the right path in a world where one mistake can put you into debt for the rest of your lifetime. You can put off starting. You can wait for times to be perfecter. (They won’t ever get that way.) You can aim for something “more realistic.”
The cream still rises to the top. Nothing in my background says I should be where I am today. I didn’t complete my undergraduate degree. (Yet.) I’ve been through enough trauma over the past three years to put someone in therapy for decades. None of the steps I took were perfectly measured.
But none of those constructs actually matter. If this is what you want to be your life path, then write. Don’t waste another second trying to justify it to yourself and the voices in your head. Andy Benoit self-published his own books all by himself. You can too. All these suggestions really require is action.
Q: The one secret ingredient to your success is:
A: There’s no secret here: Hard work. I outwork just about everyone I know. I routinely put in 20 hour days. I do my best work from midnight to 5am when the rest of the world is sleeping. No interruptions, and I can power out cookbook edits, blog posts, photo editing, and get things baked and ready to go for a photo shoot when daylight breaks. It won’t always be this way, but for now, it is. And when I’m 90 I’ll look back on this time and be grateful that I had a full life.
Job searching can feel like an overwhelming mountain to climb, but in the end, these guys are right. There are only three things that make all the difference in job hunting and job keeping: 1) work hard, 2) don’t wait, and 3) don’t give up.
In my brief 5-year post-collegiate experience but replete job-hunting/working experience I’d say that’s the truest and best advice there is. Work hard, don’t wait, and don’t give up.
And always have good background music.