Just over a month ago, I wrote a blog post about the agonising process of applying for jobs. Well, I am still unemployed and what was once agonising is now depressing, de-motivating and completely soul-destroying. To date, I have applied for over 60 jobs. All jobs I am perfectly qualified for and know I would do well, but I am still to even be asked to interview. The sun is out and it’s getting warmer but I am still jobless.
Last year, I saw a segment on the news about high depression rates among the unemployed. The reporter visited a young man who had been unemployed and looking for jobs for over a year. His self-confidence was shattered, he hardly left the house and after so many rejections, his motivation to apply for more jobs barely even existed. I am beginning to know exactly how he feels.
I am now receiving Job Seeker’s Allowance – an amazing, life-changing amount of £56.80* a week – but even my advisor can’t help me or tell me to do something I’m not already doing in order to find a job. So I apply for a minimum of seven jobs a week, go to the job centre once a fortnight to sign a piece of paper and leave feeling weary and deflated.
And to make matters worse, there seems to have been an abundance of newspaper articles, television programs and radio broadcasts in the last few weeks about the difficulties faced by The Unemployed Youth of Today, about how difficult it is ‘out there in the real world’, about how there are too many people and not enough jobs, and how, if you just stick at it and keep your head up, something will come along.
Yes, I suppose they are right and something will come along, eventually. But as my bank balance dwindles as quickly as my self-confidence and I get closer to having to ask my parents for financial help, all I want to do is scream: “Shut up! You have no idea what it’s like!” at the newspaper/television/radio.
Not to blow my own trumpet, but, I have two degrees, I’ve been doing relevant (unpaid)** internships and work experience placements for three years. I’m bright, competent and switched-on. So why does nobody want to hire me? I have managed to get one piece of feedback from an application I sent to the Wimbledon Guardian newspaper for their Trainee Reporter position. The lovely man I spoke to told me he couldn’t see any reason why I had not made the shortlist, it was simply because they had over 100 applications and he had to narrow those down to just five people for the interview stage. Too many people not enough jobs.
But, I am not going to let this bring me down. I will complain no longer. I am stepping up my game. I am going to seek out every freelance writing job there is and I’m going to blog more (probably starting out with the two points I have asterisked in this post). And if the worst comes to the worst, I’ll do another round of the bars, restaurants and cafés in my area with my CV in search of anything I can do that isn’t sitting in my flat, applying for job after job and going to That Place.
So if you are reading this and you have any suggestions of how I can make my applications stand out or how I can make sure I am one of the five people in one hundred who are asked to interview, if you know of any freelancing work going or if you actually want to hire me, please leave a comment or send me an email.
Thanks for reading :)
* That’s a whole other rant all-together.
** And so is that one.
Featured image courtesy of George Lane