I’ve been unemployed for coming up on three weeks now. This unemployment period is not one I foresaw coming. I thought I was onto a good thing, but suddenly there was a quick change in company direction and my office was closed. I had a week’s notice.
I’m not bitter. I think the decision was the right one for the company. I don’t hold the owners responsible, they are good people and have to act with the best intentions of their business, their product.
What really strikes me, though, is the impact the job search can have on you. In my previous spells of unemployment, as with this one, I have swung from supreme optimism and believe in myself and my skills, to plumbing the depths of despair, self-doubt and feelings of worthlessness. Like a sine wave, I often hit the peaks and dips in succession, sometimes multiple times in a day.
I wonder about this, and why this happens. Is it societal pressure? We often judge people by their job. People working in an old fashioned industry strike us as old fashioned and conservative, people who work in Google or Facebook are cool, cutting edge while baristas are clearly hipsters.
This experience is really trying to tell me something. I need to figure out what I want from my job, what employment means to me and if I’m willing to work in a “crappy” job in order to achieve my goals outside of work. For me, is a job a means to an end, or is it a central pillar of my life that I need to enjoy in order to feel content?