“Summer”- Calvin Harris

Late to the game with this song, I love it. It’s been on repeat during my workouts and my car drives for the past few days.

I read an interesting article today, “Does Follow Your Passion Make for Sound Career Advice?” and it went on to describe the lack of practicality in that advice. A few weeks prior, Fast Company had an article that talked about doing what you love and accepting nothing less.

Contradictory advice.

I do feel like there is a middle ground. That you can pursue your passions while being practical. A process I am exploring right now as I fill-out a ton of job applications to find my work/life balance.

Redundancy is the name of the online application game.

Let’s be practical- Personal Training is something I love to do, but if I had to make training pay for every single one of my bills, I would cease to love it. Training is difficult, it’s a complicated thought process, it’s writing out a program, it’s determining goals. Having 8-10 clients is tough, if I had 40+…. I may not stay sane.

I love social media strategy and community management. But my entire life cannot exist behind a computer screen. I need to be around people, engage in something that doesn’t involve a “like” or “follow” or “share.” I need to make real-life connections outside of the online world.

Pretty accurate description of how it feels

Right now I have 30 applications out for 9-5 work. I am looking to work in a client-side environment because as much as I love agency work, I don’t want the 80+ hour work week from one position.

I have two part-time jobs. I personal train for a phenomenal company, where my clients have made tremendous strides in their fitness journeys. And I maintain social media strategy and management for six different companies right now. Some are small and local businesses, others are nationwide accounts. The work takes time, but it makes a difference to the companies themselves, often a very measurable difference where they see an increase in real-life interactions based on online strategies.

I have a master’s in Advertising and several years of experience working in digital and social strategy for small and medium and even large businesses.  But it’s a buyers market and I am competing against 80 other applicants for a similar position.

Qualifications that you’ve worked hard for can start to seem… unnecessary.

And the actual process can start to wear you down. It’s frustrating to continue to push and apply for positions and to hear absolutely nothing back. The online process removes a lot of the personality and makes you a number in a database. Keyword searches are what determines your suitability. Gone are the days of dressing up, walking in and shaking hands, making an introduction and letting your personality shine through. Now I just hope there are enough buzzwords on my résumé that I can get to the second round.

I’m continuing to push though. Because I do love to work. I hate to sit idly by, when I could be helping a company push forward to success. I’ve worked since I was 14, starting with cleaning houses, and I have held more than one job since high school. I’m passionate about providing for myself, about paving my own way, and about making a difference. And I’m sure there will be a job for me that allows me to do all of that in the near future.

I hope.

-Kerith

 

 

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