When I was younger, I would make New Year’s resolutions that I was never able to keep. After a while, I gave up on making them. A few years ago, I came up with a simple one: to always seek to be my best self and a better person in general. For this year, my 2019 resolution was to find a new job by May 1st. It didn’t happen exactly then, but by the end of May, I had a new job offer.
I had relocated to Durham in May of 2016, after I had graduated college previously in December. I worked temporarily at a Bojangles here, and then at a Target for three years. I never stopped looking for a job related to my degrees in Creative Writing and English. Everyone thinks it’s an easy process to find a career-based job directly out of college. It isn’t. Especially given the type of work I wanted to do. Where would a poet with proofreading skills find work? I applied for numerous editorial and library assistant positions, as well as other similar jobs off and on while I worked at Target. No phone calls. No emails. No interviews. I was starting to get frustrated and discouraged.
Looking back, I probably wasn’t tailoring my resume properly. I had taken a course in career-readiness when I came up here. I was taught to have my resumes in chronological order, starting with the most recent work history. After a few years of doing this, I saw that it wasn’t working and switched things up. I focused on experiences and skills that were most relevant to the jobs I wanted. And it worked. I was surprised when I was called so soon for an interview at my current job. I felt like I didn’t do my best on the interview itself, but I guess they saw my potential.
I thought that I would be stuck in retail forever, yet I knew that it couldn’t be the end all, be all. I just had to wait on the right timing and to believe in myself. My advice to anyone who is job searching is to not give up, stay persistent, and allow yourself to make mistakes. Don’t beat yourself up for failing, especially when you have done the best that you can.
For next year, I hope to take better care of myself and to be kinder to others. Getting the job I want is only part of what I know I can accomplish. And I can’t wait to see what’s in store for me in 2020.