At a Loss

I’ve struggled to come up with something to write about this week.  I had planned to write about how wonderful it is to be back home, but half-way through my draft I felt the whole thing fizzle.  Back to the drawing board…

The truth is, this “job search” thing is really sapping my energy.  I hate having to “sell myself” by talking up my accomplishments.  It makes me feel hollow and insecure.  I hate having to ask for help in the form of references and recommendations, because it makes me feel like a burden.  Still, there’s no way around this.

Worse is the feeling of dread that I’m heading down another career path that I’ll despise in a few years.  I’ve already bounced between jobs a lot, enough that my resume does me few favors.  It’s okay when you’re fresh out of college, but a bit worrisome at age 30.  On top of that, I’m wondering how hard I should push to try to get a job that’s an ideal fit before cutting my losses and taking something that pays far worse than my previous job.

It’s already been almost a week, and I’m feeling antsy.

But here’s another thing: I have a tendency to mentally put my life on hold.  There’s always some reason, or excuse, for agonizing over the state of my life instead of enjoying it.  Sure, there are duties that will rightfully demand the bulk of my time and attention at times, but I have a record of losing track of everything else.

This is one of the problems that haunts me.  No matter where I am, no matter what’s happening in my life, I’m always fixating on the thing that makes me unhappiest and abandoning the things that bring me joy.   Ironically, it never helps me get ahead, and generally leads to me feeling burnt-out and defeated!  Still, again and again, I find myself repeating this destructive pattern.

Well, if anyone has tips for finding that evasive work-life balance, please let me know!  (I promise to reward you with a much more positive post next time!)

14 thoughts on “At a Loss

  1. honestly i am not sure if there is an ideal work life balance and i certainly still have no idea what i want to be when i grow up! sending you loads of luck – it is easy to feel down in a job search but try and keep positive! x

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Wow, Addie! Such self insight! Fascinating post, too, by the way. I’m ancient and retired now, but you brought back memories of the young me job hunting, worrying about things, etc.

    I’ll share with you the best two pieces of advice I ever got about jobs and working. First, when I was just out of university, a family friend, an old woman with lots of life experience, told me, “Choose something you love doing because you’ll be spending about one-third of your life doing it!”

    Next, one of my favorite professors, upon hearing I aimed to go into business, told me, “Just remember that no matter what you do, be true to yourself.”

    Now, to be honest, I didn’t take either piece of advice. At least not until I was almost 40 years old. Instead, I spent my first two decades in the work force screwing around, doing jobs I didn’t really like and that were not true to myself, and wondering night after night why I was so unhappy.

    Everything changed for me around 40 though. I got very lucky.

    At any rate, I hope those two bits of sage advice from a couple of pretty wise people can be of better use to you than I myself made of them.

    By the way, if you get a chance, drop by blog! I’d love to hear what you think of it!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Paul, thank you so much for your thoughtful advice! I think it’s easy to lose track of what matters in the face of the pressure to find a job, but it is such an important and consequential decision. Of course, it’s never too late to make positive changes, but if I can start my journey down the right track sooner, that’s even better!

      Liked by 1 person

    1. So much of life is trial and error–It’s so hard to know what the right thing to do is! There are times that I consider going back to teaching, but I know that if I did I would just be putting off the inevitable… I’m trying to stay optimistic throughout this process, which is hard, but I’m hoping I’m (finally) on the right track!

      Liked by 2 people

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