Wednesday, 16 July 2014

The (not so) secret diary of a jobseeker - Dilemmas

Photo courtesy of Northern Ireland Executive

My jobseeker diary hasn't been much in force since I've been looking for work in the last couple of months, but I feel like doing a little update.

So, as some of you may know, I have been in a bit of uncertainty for a while around my career. I have worked in office roles for most of my working life - the vast majority of them doing accounts work - which is okay, but I know my heart isn't in it any more. I don't have any ambition to become a qualified accountant or to work my way up in the corporate world.

I've also had some difficult experiences in the workplace, which I can't afford a repeat of - and quite honestly, I would rather work a few less hours.

At the same time, whilst I want to get out of accounts work, it's hard to think of something I really want to do which will pay the bills right now. Sure, I have writing on the go and maybe I will attempt to organize some workshops in the next few months .. but I'm not in a position to earn a living out of that right now.

So it puts me in a bit of a dilemma. Nowadays, you're supposed to convey to employers that you really want the job .. which is understandable .. but, in reality, even though it would be nice to have a job again - the main reason I'd want another job in accounts is for the money, and to be off benefits - being on benefits isn't a lifestyle to be envied.

Positive thinking and reality

It would be wonderful if there were lots of jobs available and if it was easy for me to find a more creative job. It's not impossible, by any means - but there's a fine line between positive thinking and reality. The reality is that most organizations are primarily focused on money, a lot of companies overwork and underpay their staff, and creativity is not a thriving part of most workplace cultures, at least not in my experience.

Plus there's the pressure of having to apply for jobs that, in reality, I don't necessarily want - although at the same time, I am trying to best to trust and accept that if I do need to stay in office work, that I'll find a good place to work. The lack of qualifications and my scattered work history over the last few years will also count against me to an extent - I care very little for the school/college qualifications I gained 20 years ago and would only do a course now if I was sure it was right for me.

So where do I go from here? The thought of spending even another 5 years in an office role would be scary for me .. so I do need to find a way out.

It's easy to want a perfect solution .. but life doesn't necessarily bring us easy packages. Ideally, I'd take a little while away from the workforce because so much has happened in the last few years .. but my financial situation doesn't allow that. We are fortunate in the UK to have a benefits system that looks after people better than a lot of countries - and some people do abuse it. Although again, if you've had a difficult life, and not much of a work history - or if you just find it impossible to get interviews for whatever reason - I can understand why a person would get despondent and fed up with the system. I feel a bit guilty that I'm not working at times .. but life goes on. When you know that there's more to life than the 9 to 5, and you know that you have a purpose that goes beyond that .. I guess all I can do is take things as they come :)


  1. yeah fair play, similar situation myself... trying to learn webdesign at the moment which i think is potentially quite a useful skill, wish i had started earlier but hindsight is always 20/20, i simply assumed i would be a musician when i grew up, lol *facepalm*

    1. Hindsight is wonderful isn't it :D Well even if you can't make much money out of music, just do whatever you can.


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