Being Unemployed: The Struggle Within & The Courage To Overcome
Between the ages of 30 and 43, I have been laid off four times. Every job I ever really liked/loved cut me loose and threw me to the scrap pile at no fault of my own. I have been the victim of corporate re-orgs, financially unstable companies and failing start-ups. It would be almost easier to deal with my battlefield of a career if I SUCKED at what I did, but the funny thing is I DON’T.
I had bosses cry over me when they had to say goodbye (one boss considered me like family), had clients ask management why they let me go and had numerous people say to me recently, “I can’t believe you are still out of work, you are so talented.”
I CAN’T believe it either….
I have always envisioned myself as a blue collar worker in the white collar world of marketing. I give my ALL, ALL the time. I have no problem wearing multiple hats and will roll up my sleeves to achieve my goals. To use a sports cliché, I ALWAYS play to the final buzzer.
I am extremely dedicated to the company that hires me because I feel I OWE them because they took a chance on me. They entrusted in my skill set and considered me a valued asset. So I will go that extra mile for the company/my boss. I guess those are the values my mother taught me.
Being laid off for the third time in seven years, I sometimes feel no one values my talent or my work ethic. I struggling with that F word, no not the vulgar one but this F word could be considered as vulgar and damaging to your psyche…..FAILURE.
FAILURE in your career that you worked so hard to grow and develop.
FAILURE to your family because you are not contributing financially.
FAILURE to yourself.
Even though my professional career is broken, beat and scarred, I try to keep on keeping on and press to overcome any obstacle thrown in my career path.
I continue to scour the earth for job opportunities, I squeeze the life blood out of my network, I continue to go on interviews and I continue to ride on the train that has only one stop as of late…..REJECTION STATION.
And it’s tough so damn tough….if you haven’t been unemployed (thank your lucky stars because I would not wish this upon my worst enemy), you really have NO idea what it does to you mentally.
I compare it a lot to when I was single. I would go on countless dates, some that I thought went well and that they like you, but the feeling isn’t mutual. You get blindsided with the verdict and you are left questioning what is up or down anymore.
So when family and friends ask how my interviews go I just say, “I will let you know when I get the job.”
Because to be honest, I have NO clue anymore….
I have tried to re-create myself by learning new skills such as social media/content marketing to compliment my successful career as a corporate event planner. I have used these talents to create content for and manage an award nominated Boston sports blog. I have also created a successful sports blogging event series called Boston Sports Blogapalooza. We will hold our seventh event since 2010 and I have to pinch myself that it’s still not a dream.
Even during the darkest times, light shines through….
Like being the proud father of a wonderful little boy who is my full time job at the moment. While Mommy is off supporting the family, I am doing my best Mr. Mom at home. It’s saving us money on day care and nothing compares to being there during the early development of your child.
He keeps me going…..I try to be STRONG for him and that’s what I keep telling myself during this incredible struggle in my life.
As my wife keeps telling me, concentrate on the GOOD things in your life because you only get one kick at the can.
I will continue to dropkicking that can because it’s not in my DNA to give up….EVER!
Oh yeah, I beat cancer too.
If you want to invest in someone that gives his all all the time and has a set of intangibles that will help drive your company’s business goals, please check out my LinkedIn profile.