I’m really lucky, some might call it privileged. Between my family and MadMan I have no need to worry about money in college, or even after. Yet, I love working. Recently I realized that I was about to work myself out of a job, and strangely, I was happy about that. The problem, I had just been denied for the last job that would have kept me with no time off. I also realized that while I am good at giving advice, I don’t always follow it. This is a story about two days, (a few days ago). A culmination of events that lead to a revelation.
A few days ago I was driving home from my job when I got a phone call. It was the one I’d been waiting on, the call back. Yet, it didn’t go how I expected.
While the interviewer had told me that I was her favorite during and after the interview, she called back and told me they had decided to go with a man with sales experience. She told me she was sorry, that I was perfect, and there was nothing more I could have done. I thanked her for calling me and letting me know, hung up the phone, and cried.
I was mad. I thought she had changed her mind when she found out I was engaged (something I was warned about by friends.) I was upset because I thought she lied about me being the top candidate. I was confused as to why sales experience would help this mystery man schedule hotel rooms, run social media, and work on signs more than my experience doing those exact things. I was furious that I had yet again gotten to the final interview before getting told no, it was the fifth time. I even cried on the way to work the next day.
Then I realized, something was wrong. I was not being mindful, I was being immature. Not getting a job shouldn’t effect me like this, I should learn from it instead. Obviously it was something deeper.
I had known for some time that I was about to finish what I was hired to do, I was working myself out of a job. (I have a week left before I’m done.) After all, that’s why I was looking for a new job. On that day, though, I realized that it was more than that. I realized that while I was scared of being without a job for a little while I also felt drained, lonely, and dead at work. Don’t get me wrong, I loved my co-workers and was okay with my job, but it just wasn’t the perfect fit for me. I looked on WordPress, searching for someone who felt like me, preferably one who had done something about it.
These articles caught my attention and got me thinking.
I began to think.
Was there any reason to be mad at the phone call?
Was the person that got the job a person I should be mad at?
Was I forming pre-conceptions to make myself feel better?
Would we be okay if I didn’t have a job for a month? Two?
If so, what was the root of the problem?
Why was I REALLY so upset?
I answered all these questions, I even wrote them out in a journal.
Some people tell you it’s bad to have no job while looking for a new one. The truth was, I was terrified of looking bad on a resume. I thought I had to have a job lined up by the time my current job ended. After thinking, I realized that was hogwash. It would all be okay.
Society makes you think that if you just stick in there for long enough, it will get better, you’ll fit in. I’m here to say that while I always liked who I worked with, how I felt about the company never changed. It wasn’t a bad company, just not the right fit, and that stayed the same from day one.
I’ve worked in my current position for almost a year now, pushing and waiting on the “it’ll get better” moment, yet it has never never come. I even took the position because I thought I had to take it. I applied because I thought having a job was what I was supposed to have. We didn’t need the extra money back then. I could have taken my time to look for a new job, yet, I felt bad, like I had to take the first one offered.
Mindfulness is about being more aware of your life and those of the ones around you. It’s about being happy. While I loved the work I did and the people I worked with, I was not happy. I thought that if I pushed long enough, like every said, I would be. What I needed to learn was that my happy is not their’s. Yes, I already knew that, but I really needed to learn it.
My thoughts drifted to minimalism.
Was this job making my life better?
Would I okay without a job for a month or two?
It seems that mindfulness and minimalism may go more hand in hand than I had thought previously. This job was just like a TV. It was something that could be evaluated and examined. It had a value, pros, and cons. When I asked the same questions about my job as I did the TV, I realized that while a TV provided me with Netflix, Video Games, and little stress, the job provided with with a disproportionate amount of stress. I learned after thinking, that if I accepted that I might not have a job when this one ended, that stress went away.
I have a week left of work and no job lined up after it. I feel a pressure lifted off of me. Sure, there is hard work to come and I may get denied for five more jobs, but this time it will be okay. In fact, as I sit typing this, I’m sitting in the sun, relaxing. I’m enjoying the feeling of being true to me. The feeling of not hating existence. Of not needing to apply to every job I am qualified for, but the ones I really like. Being happy.
Next, I am going to apply for some jobs, ones that I really like. Sure, I might be perfect for a job down the street, but if I don’t 100% like what they do and who they are, I’m not taking it. I’ve learned my lesson. I’m going to be mindful about the applications I submit, take time to get to know the company BEFORE applying and if they tell me no, I’ll just apply to the next place I like, no worries.
What does MadMan think?
It’s funny really. He saw it all before I did. He’s told me that while I like the job, it’s not perfect AND THAT WAS OKAY. He told me to relax, we would be fine if I didn’t have a job right off the bat. The end of the world can wait for another week.
Needless to say, he’s a lot happier now because I’m happy. He’s even happier that I’ve decided to take my time in finding another job. Something that I want to do over extra money in the bank.
How can my story help you?
When I talk about mindfulness I talk about being aware of yourself, others, your feelings, your goals, your dreams, and so much more. When I talk about Minimalism I tell you to ask if this object is making you happy, if it’s adding value to your life.
Now I say combine those two, something I was not doing quite right.
Ask yourself if the job you have is adding value to your life and making you happy.
Ask if quitting would improve your mood so much that maybe money isn’t the biggest problem you have to worry about.
Ask yourself if you have a reason to worry, or if you are worrying for no reason.
And lastly, when applying for a job, ask yourself if it’s a good fit. No matter the money they offer, is it the right job for you?
Look out for the lessons you can learn in each event through life. Knowing something to be true isn’t always enough. Sometimes you have to experience it.
Make sure that when you think about if you are happy, you really think about what you can do about it. Sure, you can push through, but maybe that’s not what you need to do. Maybe you need to relax, go with the flow, or even swim the other way.
Life is mad. It’s time to simplify.
It’s time to set a goal.
Simply to be happy.