Wednesday, July 30, 2014

Finally a crazy busy week!

Well this past week has (so far) been crazy. I did a day of work on Sunday working for a photography company which is owned by a couple at my church this pretty much involved getting up at 5.15am (not a typo), taking payment and entering things into Excel. Then I came home for 2 hours before racing off again for a girls night with the (awesome) girls who go to my church, we ate fish and chips, watched Pitch Perfect and had chocolate fondue, this meant that I didn't go to bed until 11.00pm (it was worth it though). I spent Monday lounging around the house feeling like a zombie when I got a phone regarding a job interview for the next day.
The interview went really well and I could see myself working for the company long term so praying that I get it, then that afternoon I get another phone call regarding an interview for today. The interview was only a first round interview but I think I did ok, though I am unsure of the company. Then I got a phone call regarding yet another interview which after looking where it was located and just not seeing it possible to get there I had to cancel it (I wish companies would post their addresses on Seek!). So I went from having no interviews to having had 3 (I still count the one I had to cancel), which is unheard of in this job market.
I have no idea how I managed to land all these interviews when I have done nothing different than what I have done in the past. I guess it all comes down to trusting God and knowing that things do get better even if at times it doesn't feel like it.
In between all of the above I managed to read the latest Bloodlines book by Richelle Mead, Silver Shadows which was amazing (its the sister series to Vampire Academy and well worth a read if you loved the books) and I can't wait for the 6th and final instalment to come out in February next year. Started painting a (small) canvas and managed to get back on the cross trainer (I went ice skating last Tuesday I fell over on the ice and my right knee has been a nice shade of purple ever since, so given my history of bruising the actual knee bone I didn't want to risk making it worse by exercising for at least a week).
This past week may have been crazy but I wouldn't have it any other way, its good to be busy and feel needed/wanted :)

Monday, July 21, 2014

Just another job interview

So today I had an interview (yay!) after so many weeks of feeling like I'm not getting anywhere I get an interview. So I spend an hour getting ready, second guessing everything (because its normal to second guess black pants when you have 3 pairs pretty much the same!) and get there 15 minutes early (because arriving early gives a good impression). But here's the thing first impressions of the company? Its quiet I am used to working with noise whether its music, people doing things or chatter but there was none of that and it was strange. I hate silence, probably because my family makes a lot of noise and even during the day when I am home alone I have a bird who talks to himself, 3 cats who are always getting into trouble and I live near a railway so my house is never silent. The interview was pretty much them telling me an overview of what the job contains and quizzing my MYOB skills (which are high because spending a whole unit on MYOB at tafe doesn't leave you with low skills), then I was told that this only a first round interview and by this stage a part of me is feeling on edge and not at peace about the interview. Of course if I do advance into the second round I will accept, because even though the chances of me getting the job are slim its good experience, but I won't be surprised if I don't get a second round interview.
I think the main thing that stood out was that I wasn't going to be helping people (it was for a furniture wholesaler)  and I don't feel that I am the right fit for the company. Whenever I have an interview I always have in the back of my mind that at the same time they are interviewing me I am interviewing them, because as much as the company is looking for the right person to fit their company I am looking for the right company which fits me.
This interview wasn't for nothing though, it gave me guidance that I am on the right track still and that after many weeks (fine months) of not getting job interviews I am still what companies are after. I only hope that soon I will find a company that I fit them as much as they fit me, but of course that's in God's hands.

Wednesday, July 2, 2014

Being Unemployed is When . . .

Being unemployed is when your younger sister thinks you are home schooled as she can't figure out what you do all day.
Being unemployed is when you hear of someone who gets a job interview you feel happy for them on the outside but on the inside you are screaming WHEN WILL IT BE MY TURN!
Being unemployed is when you hear people complaining about their jobs and you want to tell them that they are lucky that they at least have a job (regardless of what they do).
Being unemployed is when you feel that you are worthless as a person as people in society judge you for what you do on a daily basis.
Being unemployed is when you never know the right answer for when someone asks you what you do for a living.
Being unemployed is when you want you hit your desk against the keyboard as you feel like life is staying the same in a bad way.
Being unemployed is when you check your emails and you see one from a company that says that unfortunately they can't offer you an interview though you do have an impressive resume so they will keep it on file and will contact you if anything else comes up (spoiler alert they never do!) and you want to email them back and say if they really thought your resume was impressive then they would offer you an interview!
Being unemployed is when you annoyed at people who are looking for work in the same area as you because you feel that they are your competition regardless if they are applying for the same jobs or not.
Being unemployed is when you spend most of your telepathically trying to get your phone to ring regarding an interview (it rarely works).
Being unemployed is when you feel helpless and that your not doing enough even when you are
Being unemployed is when you want to scream when you don't quite meet the criteria for a job advertisement (normally because you don't have drivers licence) by one point even though the rest of the job sounds perfect.
Being unemployed is when you feel that you are always at breaking point because you can't see a light at the end of the tunnel.

I am trying to stay positive but at the moment I can't see an end to this madness and everyday I feel more like I will crack and break into a thousand pieces.

Tuesday, June 24, 2014

Unemployment Life

Being unemployed is hard and its never been a walk in the park for me. I need some sort of routine and when you're unemployed you don't really have one, many people think that you spend everyday doing nothing or are purposely not looking for work. I thought I would do a breakdown of what a typical week looks for me and a breakdown of an average day, hopefully this will show to some people that not all unemployed people do nothing all the time.
My weekly overview:
Monday - I use this day for applying for jobs as a good number of companies post jobs on Monday (another day is Wednesday) this involves cover letters and maybe doing selection criteria (depending on the place). I also walk to the shops to get some exercise and buy some lunch.
Tuesday- This day is different every week and it depends on whether Dad is home or not. Today I drove him around and got some time up on my logbook. I hope to eventually do volunteer work on this day but its taking a while to get all the forms cleared by the hospital so it looks like it may be a while until I can do that.
Wednesday- This is Mum's day off so we go and visit my Grandma and run errands. Every second Wednesday I have an employment agency meeting in the afternoon which goes for half an hour.
Thursday- This day is similar to Tuesday in that it really has no routine and just depends on what's been happening. Currently I am meeting with a friend for one on one Bible reading in town in the afternoon.
Friday- I meet a friend for lunch at the local shopping centre but go there early to run errands and read in the library as something to do.
Saturday- Family day, sometimes we go to our favourite cafĂ© for lunch or shopping centre or markets or a local museum it depends on the weather and what we feel like, we also like to be tourists at times and explore new places :)
Sunday- Church :) I also sometimes go out to lunch with the other young adults.

Most days I apply for any jobs that come up and I meet the criteria for as its best to apply for jobs the day that they come up but on Monday it takes longer as its when the most jobs get advertised. I also do any chores such as vacuuming, sorting the washing and cooking dinner when required.

Breakdown of an average day:
My alarm goes off at 7.30am, I am trying to wake up at a decent time but I don't get out of bed until 8.30am as its been so cold lately (it was 0.5 degrees this morning!) so I tend to read and check for jobs on my iPod.
I get dressed and have breakfast then read the news to find out what's been happening in the world.
The main part of my day varies on what I have on and if I have a job interview or not. My life is ruled by job interviews at the moment so if I get one I drop all my plans and go (thankfully people are very flexible and understanding).
My sisters and parents begin to come home from 2.45pm and I also work out for 20 minutes on the cross trainer. Twice a week I cook dinner and once a week I do the dishes.

I do admit that there are times when I do nothing but I try not to sit at home and waste away (I go stir crazy pretty quickly!). I always get dressed and never stay in bed all day I believe that its bad for my mental health and even I feel like staying in bed that its important that I get up and make an effort. I am always applying for jobs and making sure I fulfil my youth allowance requirements.

Being unemployed is hard and I would give anything to get a job just so I could feel like I have a purpose with my life. I try to get out of the house most days because sitting at home achieves very little, even if its just walking to the shops to post a letter or buy some milk. Since I have started working out  I feel more focused and find that I am sleeping better which makes my whole outlook better and I am not so restless. The thing I find the hardest is that people just assume that I do nothing all week and am not trying to find employment, I hope that this puts an ends to that assumption.

I am currently praying that I will get an interview soon as I am beginning to get really stir crazy and I feel that I am doing everything I can in order to get a job, so hopefully I will have a good update soon.
Picture taken from Pinterest original source here

Thursday, June 12, 2014

Alone

Have you ever felt alone? Not alone in the no friends sense but alone in the I-feel-like-I-am-the-only-one-going-through-this sense?
Currently that's me, I have great friends and family and feel blessed to have them yet I still feel alone. I get that I'm not the only unemployed that I know but I'm the one whose been unemployed the longest and is seriously wanting to give up. I apply for any job I can and pray that something anything comes of it, yet nothing ever does. I am feeling the pressure put on by the government as job seeker payments are under review and after the 1st of July things will change. I have great experience and referees there is nothing wrong with my resume or that I could do differently. I am organising volunteer work at a local hospital helping sort through various things and doing general admin jobs where needed, yes its only one day a week but it shows employers that I'm not sitting around doing nothing. If the job market wasn't so tough I would get a job easily but its hard and it seems that the job seekers under 30 are feeling the brunt of it. I guess I just want a purpose some place where I can go and feel that I am needed rather than trying to fill my days with watching episodes of random TV shows and baking.
Of course I need to remind myself that I am never truly alone because as long as you have God you will always have company even when it feels like its just you against the world.

Tuesday, June 3, 2014

What's next God

Every now and then I have a saying that I will end up saying multiple times until it becomes a 'saying' for a period of my life. When I had just turned 18 and lost my job due to having an anxiety attack it was "My life can't get any worse!" because for that period of time every little thing that could go wrong did, when I lost my job last July when my parents were away it was "I have realised that my life is not my own", for a while it has been "It's all in God's hands" and now it's currently "What's next God?".
Every morning I wake up without having any idea of what my day has in store, most of the time I have a vague idea but even then I long for the phone to ring regarding a job interview or something letting me know I am on the right track.
I have (finally) passed my drivers test which is great (and somewhat a miracle) and I am getting my hours up. I am now concentrating on getting a job which isn't happening, I check the Seek app frequently and applying for any job that I can, yet I don't seem to be moving forward. I am finding it harder to get out of bed in the mornings which I hate and there are days when I wonder if there is even a point of getting up and facing the world. I get mad when I see people who have work complaining about their jobs when I would do anything to get a job. I get mad when people question why I'm not at uni and why I'm not still studying. I have never had a desire to go to uni and there is nothing that I can see myself studying there, also I can't cope with exams and know that uni would be a waste of time for me. I am over dealing with my employment agency and the past appointments have been them telling me to get experience in retail even though I am trying to line volunteer work relevant to admin and business. I just want a job where I will feel needed and are able to use and build up my skills that I have. I guess I am getting to the point where everyday I wake up and go 'What's next God?' praying that I will get an answer.

Sunday, May 25, 2014

A year with Alfie and some big news :)

This post is going to be random, so just a warning!


It's been a year today since I got Alfie and I have no idea where the year has gone! He is the cheekiest, cutest, lovable cat who demands to be cuddled then will bite your hand off! He has gotten much bigger but still acts like a kitten and is still obsessed with bells (Christmas was a challenge as the decorations included bells and sparkly things) and yes he is a box which is another one of his obsessions (I had ordered a few things online and they came in a big box which he was pleased about!).

Now onto the news of the week (or month?), no I haven't gotten a job (that would be nice but I am trusting God that I will get one soon) but I FINALLY PASSED MY DRIVERS TEST!!! It has taken me 4 unsuccessful attempts and a few thousand dollars in lessons but I did it!!! I did it at the same place I did my last one but with a different tester. I honestly can't believe it, I asked the tester 5 times after he told me I passed if it was true, I just couldn't believe it! It still feels surreal and I find myself thinking that I need to practice more or to book another test in but I don't. Instead I just have to get 25 hours of driving logged and wait 6 months then do another computer generated test and I have my license (well my P plates but I can drive by myself), I have logged just under 2 hours and Dad is making me drive everywhere and I am hoping that I can drive down south to visit some friends soon. But I have 6 months to do it all so no major hurry, my next aim is to get a job so I can save up for a car (I want a small car with 4 doors and preferably in a bright colour). For now my parents are happy to taxi me around and friends are happy to give me lifts home if they can :)
Because I failed my drivers test 4 times previously I thought I would post some tips on how to pass your Practical Driving Assessment:
  • Get a good sleep the night before and make sure you are wide awake before the test! I avoided caffeine before the tests as I found it made my heart race which made me more likely to have an anxiety attack (nerves and caffeine are never a good mix in my book!).
  • Wear clothing that is comfortable and allows easy movement in the arms, also wear shoes that will stay on your feet (no thongs (flipflops) or flats that won't stay on your feet!). I wore jeans, boots, a 3/4 sleeved top and a loose cardigan which meant that I was comfortable and didn't feel restricted when I was turning the steering wheel. If you have long hair make sure it is out of your face and if you prefer to wear sunglasses when you drive take them with you (even if the sun isn't out and they stay on your head the whole time, it feels good knowing you have them just in case there is a glare)
  • Arrive early. Its recommended that you arrive at least 15 minutes early and by arriving early you will feel less rushed and have a few minutes to gather your thoughts and calm down before the test.
  • Have a decent meal/snack before you go depending on the time of your test. I have to force myself to eat when I am nervous but I always try to force something down whether it be a nut bar or a handful of nuts or Nutella on bread or a baked bean and cheese toasted sandwich just make sure it will fill you up. There is nothing worse than your stomach rumbling during a test which will distract you.
  • Book a lesson a couple of days before. This isn't a must but it will help, and it will help brush up your skills and work out what you need to work on. Also many instructors will book you in for a lesson before your test if you decide to go through them, I found that it didn't help me at all and actually made me more nervous (which impacted my driving), when I did it in my Mum's car I only drove to the licensing centre and around the area for 10-15 minutes before hand.
  • Drive everyday leading up to the test. This really helped me and is what I think helped me finally pass my test. I practiced my reverse parking everyday non stop leading up to my last test and I felt confident that I could pass it, even though I didn't end up doing it (which is what I failed on last time, go figure!) I still felt confident and knew that I could do it.
  • Mix up your test locations. This really helped me, after failing 3 times at one location I decided to try another location which was less busy and I didn't really know (which made me pay more attention). Ask around where your friends did their tests as the chances are some places may be easier than others (or have more understanding instructors if you have anxiety etc. ).
  • Paint your thumb nails a bright colour. I don't know how much this really helped, but I found I was more aware where my hands were on the steering wheel as the polish really made my nails 'pop' against the steering wheel.
  • Take note of the time of your test. Try to aim to get a test for the middle of the day during the school term (less cars on the road) but if you do get an early/late test take note of any school zones and make sure to go the speed limit through them.
  • Finally do what works for you. In the end I eventually passed my test in my Mum's car, in a different location as to where I took lessons and it was on my 5th go. Its not uncommon to fail on your first (or second or third or forth you get the idea!) go and you will eventually get it, this coming from someone who has anxiety and co-ordination issues (Dyspraxia gotta love it!) and want to give up so many times but didn't.  
My next aim is to get a job, which God willing will happen soon! I figure if I finally passed my drivers test a job has to be in the near future :)