Job hunting sucks. Sorry I couldn’t get more creative than that.
I was laid off in February of last year and didn’t find another position until October. I convinced myself I wasn’t totally useless since I was still in school but I definitely felt pretty demoralized. Now that my current position will end in May as does the last semester of my master’s program, it feels like I never stopped the job search.
I know I shouldn’t complain. I’m not among the long-term unemployed. I have experience in the field I want to be in now and will be getting a master’s. I’m definitely in a much better positon now than I was when I initially started my search but it doesn’t make it any less tedious and agonizing. What monster invented cover letters? Seriously, WHO? AND WHY? THEY’RE AWFUL. I spent over an hour on the phone coaching a friend through writing one when I realized 1) I am not qualified to give advice, 2) writing an inspired cover letter is impossible, 3) job hunting sucks. It is so incredibly demoralizing and dehumanizing looking through posting after posting, slaving over an application, only to submit it and have it lost in the ether. Networking can be a great resource but it can also be exhausting (especially for an introvert like me).
So if you’re job hunting or gearing up for a job hunt, be prepared. It can be depressing and you will get easily discouraged. But know you’re not alone. It’s hard out there. I’ve applied to so many jobs that I’m 100% qualified for and never heard back. I’ve had countless (qualified) people pour over my resumes and cover letters and have been told it all looks great only to go months without an interview. Nothing’s guaranteed and everything requires hard work. Some people get lucky right away and some people have to work for it to all fall into place. I have always been the latter.
After months, I had two very promising interviews that went really and was told I’d be going on to second rounds only to have the company go into a hiring freeze. I also bombed two interviews; one because I realized I really didn’t want to work there during the interview and the other because I was definitely not qualified. And after a seemingly endless cycle of hopefulness, trepidation, and despair, I lucked out. That’s kinda been the theme of my life: STRESS STRESS STRESS then WINDFALL. Things always get done but not before I have a nervous breakdown and definitely not before I become totally desperate. But that all just makes me appreciate the windfall that much more.
So, yes, your tears and frustration and angst are totally valid. And if you’re like me, you’ll probably become paralyzed by the fear and stress of it all and then go into beast mode when you feel like time’s running out. But it all falls into place eventually. And usually for the right reasons. And it has to because you won’t stop working until it does.