I have written at least 15 different first sentences for this post. Why? Because I’m in a funk. It’s 3:00* on Thursday and I find myself in a cover-letter induced, can’t form a sentence funk.
I try not to post too much about the job search because quite frankly it’s not very interesting. For the most part I alternate between searching for jobs to apply to one day and then applying to those jobs. Every ten days or so I get frustrated by not having heard back from anything. That leads to a stage of the process I like to call “sulking,” which is followed closely by “complete emotional exhaustion.”
Then, in the words of Brian McKnight, “I’ll start back at one.”
I think one of the hardest parts of the whole process is remaining positive. There’s such a “don’t worry, be happy… or else” mentality about everything. People seem to get genuinely uncomfortable with natural expressions of doubt, sadness and anxiety. Well let me be the first to say I have a whole lot of doubt, sadness and anxiety, and I refuse to apologize for it. It feels like I’m walking down a long hallway full of people ready to ignore me. Non-response after non-response after non-response.
On top of that I feel like any break I take infects people with the notion that I’m kicking back and relaxing, that I don’t have a job because I’m not trying hard enough or I don’t want it bad enough. Tied into the positivity push is the notion that you can never do too much. And while there’s truth to that, rejection as a full time job is just too overwhelming. I’d be in entertainment if I wanted that as my career.
When asked about the process it would be wonderful if I could smile politely and say, with a sparkle in my eye, “It’s been a really great experience, I just haven’t found the right job yet.” In reality being asked how the job search is going makes me want to reply with any number of inappropriate responses, including running away, dead staring, and spitting ice cubes at the question ask-er while saying “LIKE THAT, IT’S GOING LIKE THAT.”
So, needless to say, staring at a blank screen and trying to write about why I’m the most stupendous employable person who will bring so much to the table it’ll knock your socks off is not high on my list of Things I Want To Be Doing. Cover letter funk indeed.
If you’re like me and you find yourself in a cover letter funk, step back from what you’re doing to do something you enjoy. I like to take a walk, watch a show or cook (I’m a stress baker). Additionally, I recently got great advice from a woman I met with in California: make it fun. For every 50 serious jobs you apply to, she recommended, send out 1 outrageous cover letter or apply to one absurd job. Perfect advice.
*Evidence of the Funk? I did indeed start this post at 3:00 and didn’t post it until now because I was distracted, doing other things, forgot it for a bit.
(Image Source: http://www.abovetopsecret.com/forum/thread776925/pg1)