Impressions From A Job Fair


A few weeks ago I had a table at a local job fair with flyers, sign-up sheets for free career consultations and a cool little video-clip showing my career coaching in action. The response was amazing and I got to talk to people all day long about their employment seeking experiences. Some of them had been looking for jobs for many years, others just for a few weeks.

CCT_GradWhat surprised me was this: Most of the people I spoke to were looking for jobs they did not really want to find.

Why? Many reasons: Some of them were tired of working at something they didn’t enjoy just to pay their bills. Others had experienced psychological symptoms like panic attacks, sleeping disorders and overall stress and were afraid to get back into the day-to-day grind. Only one woman told me she wouldn’t have left if it hadn’t been for a lay-off. But even she did not want to get back into the same industry.

Top of the list, however, was that people were afraid of finding something they didn’t like. One lady told me that she was tired of compromising her aliveness for a job. “I want to do something I enjoy, something that makes me feel good about myself at the end of the day.”

Many of the people I spoke to were also curious about starting a small business, creating jobs of their own so to speak. They had heard and read the success stories of people running small enterprises all over the country, the living proof that doing what you love for a living is absolutely possible.

The main question those people had was: “What am I good at? How can I make money using my skills?” Surprisingly enough, after a little bit of probing most of them did know what they liked doing (if you think you don’t, you may be surprised how easy you can find out with only a few questions).

In wrapping up, this is my recommendation: Don’t wait to enjoy your life. Instead, turn it into an amazing experience, no matter what the circumstances. You are the master of your own destiny. Start with having a good time, it will make everything so much easier!

Action Step: Whether you want to find a job, start your own business or both, there are a few things you can do right now to put the fun back into your life.

Distinguish what it is you really enjoy doing and start integrating it into your day-to-day life. For example, if you love designing and being creative, find time during your day to paint, take pictures or other creative endeavors. If you have a hard time making time for this, sign up for a class that offers what you are looking for. Not only will you engage in activities you like, you may also meet people who share the same passion.

As one woman told me, “Had I known 3 years ago that I would be unemployed for all this time, I would have started to learn something new, something that really interests me a long time ago.” Right?

Good luck and feel free to shoot me an email if you have questions or can’t find your way. Together we can figure it out.


Helpful books on the topic:

Career Renegade: How to Make a Living Doing What You Love by Jonathan Fields

Escape from Cubicle Nation: From Corporate Prisoner to Thriving Entrepreneur by Pam Slim