Tag Archives: Job Search

The Art of Rejection

22 Dec

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After sitting in my drafts for a bit I’ve yet to come up with any new, profound points about experiencing and consequently rising above rejection.  I’ve also been temporarily paralyzed by my (most recent) personal meeting with rejection.  Hopefully I avoid sounding like a whiney millennial because… none of those are here right now.

In the last two weeks I made it to the final round of candidates for a dream position of sorts, had quite the encouraging interview (with encouraging activity from the interviewers), and waited for a week in high but realistic spirits.  A week later I was smacked in the face with the most generic rejection email.  It was almost as though I had never talked with anyone affiliated with the organization.  I refreshed my inbox several times to insure I did not read the message incorrectly.  But of course, there it was, the rejection just comfortably sitting there–mocking me.

It’s almost comical how many instances of rejection we will experience in our lifetime.  That little girl didn’t want to hold your hand in the sandbox.  Your body rejected your first navel piercing.  The girl with a constellation of freckles (damn I’m sounding like Thought Catalog…) and honey eyes politely rejected your offer to take her on a date.  Your professor rejected the topic for your final paper.  Your dream job and others like it send you a sugary coated e-reject on a weekly basis.  The list infinitely continues.  Rejection is the gift that keeps on giving (among the other “gifts” that keep on giving).  Yes, it is a gift if you take the necessary steps and use it as a catalyst for growth and success!

Here are my steps:

Step 1 is a completely natural response to disappointment and should not be skipped.  After every other failure comes back to haunt you,  I think it’s appropriate to spend a short amount of time acknowledging your sadness.  What a great way to remind yourself that you have feelings, meaningful goals that you would like to accomplish, and have made efforts to reach them.

I find myself suspended in step 2 whether or not I’m going through the stages of rejection.  I know my generation is supposedly stuck in the “existential vacuum” and I am completely corroborating that notion.  However, existential does not necessarily equal nihilistic, apathetic, or lazy–which are additional terms that often get thrown into the vortex of immobile millennials.  

Step 3 is somewhat like a passive rebellious phase for me. My mind begins conjuring up images of me traveling to exotic destinations and being transparent; rejecting western values, corporate America, and the white picket fence portrait (Note:  I already generally reject these notions to lesser degrees).  Ultimately, I am all bark and no bite.

Alas, the light at the end of the rejection tunnel reveals itself as step 4 slaps you back into reality.  Your friends and friendly strangers are there bandaging your wounds, giving you lollipops, and offering you all kinds of next steps that never even crossed your mind.  Confidence regenerates and you’re feeling stronger than ever.  You even appreciate the rejection because with it came experience and evidence that you are trying to level up in life.

Leveling up requires the final step of getting back out there.  Change your approach and typical patterns that seem to result in rejection.  Maybe there’s a different strategy or perspective you did not consider because it’s unfamiliar to you.  Tweaking your routine will yield other results and get you one step closer to that life goal.

This is the simple way in which I experience rejection.  I probably sound dramatic but it’s not my fault because I’m involuntarily hyper-aware of my emotions. Embrace rejection.  You were rejected for a reason so kindly thank the Universe for nudging you in more correct directions.

The Job Search, Sexuality, & Résumé Points

6 Mar

I am and have been knee deep in the most frustrating race I’ve encountered thus far in my 23 years of breathing: the job search.  While I know I’m stuck in a rut just like many other recent grads, my anxiety is growing with the next wave of new graduates looming on the horizon.  However, unlike many other grads and soon-to-be grads I have the fortune of having no student debt hanging over my head dictating all my future decisions.  My lack of student debt allows me to have endless freedom for my future and yet I’m still here working my restaurant job in the meantime until I find something, (almost) anything, that pays a wage I think worthy of a University graduate.  Is that selfish of me?  Possibly.  Does this put me into the category of that “self-entitled 20 something who has no right to be choosy for their first post-graduate job?”  I don’t think so because as I said previously I’m currently working in a restaurant so obviously I’m taking any position.

Résumés are funny because to all the people who are not in hiring positions, they look exemplary.  To all the people you’re sending your résumé to, you don’t fulfill the credentials they’re looking for.  What are they looking for?  I think my résumé possibly lacks “professional” experience but definitely not experience.  The thing listed on my résumé that worries me most is my inclusion on a LGBT committee while I was in school.  I choose to list it because I believe my position in that organization truly helped mould me into the person I am today.    The other day I asked a few people if listing a LGBTQ organization on my résumé was a mistake and I did not hear the answers I was hoping to.  All of them essentially said that leaving it on there could possibly hinder me from obtaining a position with a company.  If shattering hearts were an audible sound I think the entire neighborhood would’ve heard mine.

 It’s inexplicably frustrating knowing that wherever I go in my future that my sexuality could be a factor in determining whether or not I achieve something.  I shouldn’t be too upset I know, because I would certainly not want to even consider a company that has issues with sexuality and gender identity.  However, it is always in the back of my mind whether or not I get denied because of the inclusion of a LGBT organization written on paper.  If I get to the interview portion, the worry then transfers from my sexuality to my race as I am not white.  While we can all live in a fantasy land pretending that prejudice does not exist, the sad truth is that it does and is practiced silently by numerous companies and organizations.

Although it was recommended that I take my position on the LGBT education board off my résumé, I don’t think I will.  I’d rather remain jobless I suppose than have to lie about the things I’m passionate for and what I was involved with.  I can only have faith that the right eyes or company will come across my presence in the world.  Until then I’ll keep on marching along with the rest of the unemployed graduates who may not have my same fears and concerns, but comprehend how defeating the search is; especially when your inbox is filled with at least 3 emails stating “we’re sorry but we cannot consider you for a position” a day.

P.S. if anyone does have any leads to LGBT positions or companies that would appreciate the diversity and perspective, let me know!