“If you don’t like something change it. If you can’t change it, change your attitude”- Maya Angelou
I want to point out, that this post is not about feeling humiliated because you do not have a job; this post is far from that. It has taken me several months, but unemployment has been one journey that has led me to one of the most humbling points in my life, and has led me to find my own humility in the process.
Not being able to find a job after leaving my full time job to spend 2 years working on my graduate degree has left me with a lot of emotions. In my about me section where I discuss my quarter life crisis, it stemmed from feelings of inadequacy in my attempts to find a job with my new title, Markie High, MSSW.
I scoured the internet looking for self help books to read (some proved to be very insightful and I’ll share those on another post), I went to career services hoping to find validation in my cover letter and resume writing skills, and I contemplated changing careers or going back to school for a different master’s degree. As the days turned into weeks, and I would get a job offer that turned into a recant or a final interview that turned into follow up phone calls that were never returned, my self-esteem continued to plummet. I began comparing myself to everyone that I knew was getting a job and in my mind I wasn’t being polite about it.
Let’s backtrack about two years ago when I started graduate school. I met a group of girls and we started having weekly bible study. At the time I didn’t get much out of it except that I loved getting coffee and breakfast at Panera and I got to catch up with some people that quickly turned into some of my really good friends; but I desperately wanted something more. I wanted to build my faith and my relationship with God. Thankfully, unemployment has given me this opportunity.
Just the other day I read a scripture about a king who was self absorbed and thought he was better than everyone. Until God had to literally knock him down a few pegs on his narcissism ladder. The king realized that he would be miserable until he let God take over his life and finally he did, looking up to the sky, praying and his sanity returned to him. Right there, humility. That’s what I’ve been struggling with. I’ve been struggling with realizing that everyone has been going through the same thing I have been. Unemployment is hard, stressful, and sometimes the person who got the job is just as good if not better than me for that position. Rather than being upset when someone finds something, I should be rejoicing for them!
We are all so uncertain of our futures and that’s what makes this journey so difficult. Our pride often gets in the way and we need to knock ourselves down a few pegs and remember our own humility. This is not an easy thing to do when bills need to be paid, relationships are being tested, and self-esteem is at risk; but sometimes the moral lessons are the lessons that pay the most.
Until next time,