Saturday, March 7, 2009

As long as it comes in.

When you blame others, you give up your power to change.
- Robert Anthony

If you're unemployed, don't blame your job situation on the economy. I don't.

I don't blame it on the fact that I just took the bar exam for the second time last week and I didn't pass the first time I took it.

I don't blame it on the fact that looking for a job while trying to study for the bar exam is crazy difficult, especially when you're also working at the same time as studying.

I also don't blame it on the limited amount of jobs in my chosen field in comparison to the number of applicants, or on the fact that the City of New York (as an employer) is on a hiring slowdown and has been for some time.

I don't blame it on these things, but I totally could and I'd say that most people in my position would. The aforementioned definitely have had an impact on my current lack of employment. They've had their impact but I've come to realize a few things this week as I resumed my job finding mission full force:

1. No one factor in my life can really be to blame for my lack of a job because they all have had their effect - and the blame game does not empower me at all to effect change and make things happen (so apropos, that quote!)
2. There are MAD job opportunities out there! (Yo, just check Monster or Careerbuilder or some other site. No joke.)
2a. There are mad job opportunities out there, although the majority of them may not be what I would want to do preferably.
3. I have so many skills that are applicable to so many different types of jobs and the only thing stopping me from applying to these different types of jobs is me.
3a. By me, I mean, my sense of entitlement...

It dawned on me this week that I have been going at this job search with a strong sense of entitlement, namely: I am entitled to work in a certain kind of job, which pays a certain level of pay and gives me a certain kind of experience. And that entitlement stems totally from the fact that I am no longer a 16-year-old with zero job experience, willing to do whatever kind of job she can do legally - but I am a 26-year-old doctorate-of-law recipient who bust. her. ass. earning that doctorate, who has worked in some form or fashion for almost 10 years (including the majority of her four years of law school) and thus has culled a significant amount of experience and skills to back her terminal degree.

As understandable and predictable (frankly) as this sense of entitlement is, it amounts to absolutely NOTHING in itself. Entitlement controls or dictates very little, if anything at all. Circumstances have to favor that sense of entitlement coming to fruition... and more importantly, GOD has to favor the sense of entitlement, I believe. I believe that, not only because of my faith in God generally, but because in the 10 years I've been employed, I have held at least two (absolutely amazing) positions that, on the surface, I was in no way entitled to hold... but I got the job and gained so much for them (so thankful for those, and all my experiences). But if circumstances/God don't favor me getting whatever it is I feel I'm "entitled" to, then its not likely to happen!

So I have officially let that sense of entitlement go. It feels good. And it feels like is my horizon has suddenly expanded. The sky was always the limit, but instead of those one or two paths I had in mind for going beyond the sky, now I see so many ways to go. It's sort of exciting. I'm not saying I won't be looking to be an attorney fighting the good fight for what's right, or writing/publishing that Great (Jamaican) American Novel (or book of poetry) but I am no longer limited in my search for employment by anything in existence, whether economy, entitlement or other.

Think about this. When you boil down the issue of employment, regardless of whether you're employed at your ideal position or not, there will always be left the core concern of whether your job can sustain you and provide you with all that you need to live (at a minimum) or prosper (ideally). And if the job isn't, you will likely adopt the secondary income mentality, which leads to looking for and finding an alternative source of income using some other skill set you've developed because you feel as if you need the money. My job finding mission hasn't changed in scope - I will not stop searching for what I ideally want - but it has now adopted the secondary income mentality, and is open to the possibility that the secondary income might just be the primary.

Income is just that, as long as it comes in.

N.B. When that income does come in, and my primary monetary concerns are addressed, this might just be the shoe purchase I use to celebrate...

It's nice to have something to look forward to.

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