Staying Positive & Productive During a Long Term Job Search

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jenab in Austin, Texas

18 months ago

One of the challenges of being unemployed for long stretches is staying positive and productive. I know I tend to cycle; there are times when I'm just going on automatic, and at those times, or in the following 2-3 weeks I don't see a lot of response. And there are a lot of reasons to be negative, which only makes the dips worse.

I always find in 2-3 weeks after I get re-focused I start getting calls and interviews, particularly cold contacts from recruiters and referrals from people I've met. Stop it, and the opposite happens.

Different search-specific things I do to mix it up every week are:
- Finding companies to target that aren't posting
- Finding & attending events (some in my field, some not)
- Attending search related workshops and meetings
- Updating my portfolio (esp. converting confidential material into leave-behinds that don't violate NDA)
- Updating my "Detailed Experience" including contacts, SW/HW used, accomplishments, etc. (to help update/tweak my resume)
- Checking out sites to help stay current
- "Playing" w/software to stay current and/or build up portfolio samples
- Meeting w/people I know (coffee, lunch, or just meeting)
- Helping people (formal speaking engagements, informal tutoring -- it relates to my field)

I'm not so good at the other stuff (the recent holidays were tough). I'm getting better at interrupting my own negativity, sometimes by forcing myself to go meet with someone, sometimes by just getting out of the house by taking a walk. It's often a case of being self-aware, and sometimes battling real barriers (taking a walk is great for exercise and head clearing, the allergens in the air that kick my head in, not so much).

What tips & tricks can you share about interrupting negativity when there are so many things to get depressed and frustrated over when you've been out of work for a long time?

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Joe Gagill in Walden, New York

18 months ago

I always presumed that you were allready employed f/t but looking passively.

You always come across in your writings as a really positive person with a complete life outside of job searching.

To answer your question I just don't know. I have been on automatic for over a year now, not really living (socializing) you know. And it shows in my writings...and in what I wear. I have so many nice clothes but just don't wear them. I'm glued to this computer all day afraid that I'll miss a job.

I've always said if I could find 1 good job to apply to every week I would of had a job a long time ago.

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jenab in Austin, Texas

18 months ago

Joe Gagill in Walden, New York said: I always presumed that you were allready employed f/t but looking passively.

You always come across in your writings as a really positive person with a complete life outside of job searching.

Thanks, Joe, I really appreciate that. I fake it well. :D I can even pass for being an extrovert even though I'm quite the opposite (& very self-critical).

It's been over a year, but I've had some contract work that kept me from going over my own fiscal cliff ($ is still very tight). Unfortunately that project imploded; but it helped remind me I am as good as I claim.

I psych myself out in little ways; finding things to talk about, even if it's just saying hello, how are you doing, and saying "good to hear" when someone says "fine". And if there's an opportunity to help someone, I do; I feel better, they feel better (even if it's just helping set up a room), and it's lead to conversations that lead to opportunities.

I force myself to get out of the house and do things outside of my usual routines.

I don't *need* to attend any classes at a workforce center to learn anything new; I can teach it. But I go to interact with others, and occasionally get reminded of something I've neglected (it helps having a netbook, free wireless, and a trainer who doesn't care that I'm multitasking b/c she knows me outside of class).

I also force myself to dress up when going out of the house; it's a huge attitude boost (not to mention armor).

The last few weeks it's been easier to find job postings to apply to online (at least for me and around here), but I can't count on that continuing.

If nothing else, I'm just trying to stay out of the ruts, because it's hard to get out of them. If I'm already moving, it'll be a lot easier to move when opportunity knocks (instead of freezing from shock).

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jenab in Austin, Texas

18 months ago

jenab in Austin, Texas said: Unfortunately that project imploded; but it helped remind me I am as good as I claim.

I should have clarified, "claim in interviews." That project was a whirlwind; I had thought I was bragging in the interview, but I delivered everything I said I could.

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Unemployed Paralegal in Denver, Colorado

18 months ago

IMO staying busy helps - even if it means participating on Indeed, despite the trolls who decry it. They do not understand that the act of organizing and composing thoughts and putting them in writing hones communication skills.

Pursue an interest, whatever it may be. Something that stimulates the mind.

Learn a skill. You can bet you will be asked what you've been doing during your unemployment. Updating your skills is a good response to that lame question.

It had been years since I found myself having to look for a job. I found that legal employers had scrapped WordPerfect in favor of MS Word. I didn't know Word. WP had been the wordprocessor of choice in law firms when I started in law. I figured I hadbetter learn Word. My computer had Word, so I bought the book and learned it. Also I saw ads asking for Excel. I bought the book and learned it as well. I've learned other software and operating systems.

Finally, work out. Take it from someone who knows, exercise does wonders.

Again, stay busy. You know about idle hands being the devil's workshop.

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jenab in Austin, Texas

18 months ago

Excellent points, Paralegal.

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Beth in Plano in Plano, Texas

18 months ago

When I was out of work I needed to get out of the house to clear my mind. Back in FL there were lots to do but I would usually exercise, walk my dog, go to the beach and read a book under a palm tree. Just staying inside would get me depressed and I would eat just to keep my mind off job searching.

I did lots of job searching but I would limit myself to 3 hours per day... otherwise I would want to cry and pull my hair out. This sounds crazy but just going out for a long drive on the highway would make me feel better and clear my mind.

Quality time with friends would help.

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Cheshire in Mississauga, Ontario

18 months ago

I know what I did wrong during my last stretch of unemployment. I had just graduated and couldn't find anything, I realized how few true friends I really had and came to some hard realizations about myself. I thought way too hard (one of my major weaknesses), I stayed in my room and got increasingly depressed/angry, became extremely anti-social, took out my frustrations on my family and my anxiety got out of control. It was a bad period in my life.

Now I make sure I get out of my room and away from the computer for long stretches. I've actually gained back some of my creativity by doing projects (making my own clothes, crafts etc.), I'll read books both related to employment and otherwise, I make sure to keep in touch with the few close friends that I have, I cook and hang out with my boyfriend.

Making sure to get up and leave the computer for a couple of hours a day and doing anything other than job searching is in my opinion necessary to maintain your sanity and productivity.

Also, I know how hard it can be to maintain some positivity but its so necessary for your self esteem and it really does project outwards.

I used to be a very negative person, I thought about it long and hard and decided it wasn't doing anything for me. I'm seeing now how my new attitude is helping me land more work (contract, p/t casual work) but something!

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AsktheCareerLady in San Jose, California

18 months ago

Guide

I always encourage my clients to use some of their time off to better themselves professionally.

It tends to lift the spirits when you get out of the house to meet others, while also building up your resume and giving you a fresh sense of accomplishment and confidence. These can include activities such as:

- volunteering in a capacity related to your employment objective 4 hours per week
- attending weekly events related to your profession (professional association meetings, online webinars, meetup groups, speakers, etc.)
- connecting to 5 new people in your field via LinkedIn each week for networking
- go to the library and see what types of free trainings and classes they have relative to your career (you'll be surprised at all they might have to offer!)

These kinds of activities can end up making a big enough impact that they actually land you a new job!

Best of luck and chin up!

Megan
[URL removed by Indeed Moderator]

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designer bee in Waukesha, Wisconsin

18 months ago

Jenab, there are some things on your list that I need to work on myself. Time to update my portfolio, resume and some software skills (more like a refresher). Resume won't be much. Just need to add my latest employment as soon as I figure out how to list it. Freelance, but not really freelance. That sort of issue.

One thing at a time though. Slowly working through my list of things to do.

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Unemployed Paralegal in Denver, Colorado

18 months ago

designer bee in Waukesha, Wisconsin said: Resume won't be much. Just need to add my latest employment as soon as I figure out how to list it. Freelance, but not really freelance.
Where's that troll from Georgia and his résumé ideas, now that you need him?

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designer bee in Waukesha, Wisconsin

18 months ago

AsktheCareerLady in San Jose, California said:

1- volunteering in a capacity related to your employment objective 4 hours per week
2- attending weekly events related to your profession (professional association meetings, online webinars, meetup groups, speakers, etc.)
3- connecting to 5 new people in your field via LinkedIn each week for networking
4- go to the library and see what types of free trainings and classes they have relative to your career (you'll be surprised at all they might have to offer!)


1- What's there to volunteer for as a graphic designer? Not much. I need to pay my bills, not work for free.
2- Most of that will be an hour away from where I live, otherwise I would.
3- If LinkedIn made it easier to connect to others, but it doesn't. Tried it, didn't like it.
4- My library won't have much of anything. Again, small town living.

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designer bee in Waukesha, Wisconsin

18 months ago

Unemployed Paralegal in Denver, Colorado said: Where's that troll from Georgia and his résumé ideas, now that you need him?

I'm sure he is trying to "Con" someone right now.

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Unemployed Paralegal in Denver, Colorado

18 months ago

I agree. More patent advice from another career "expert" who lacks knowledge of a specific field.

In my case, I've contributed enough free time.

Attending weekly events is unproductive. So is networking, especially when it is so utterly transparent you are using these people to get a job and otherwise could not care less about these people. They also know what you're after - they're not stupid.

Finally, public libraries won't offer any free training in anything I do or have done.

I really wonder where these "experts" come up with their "ideas."

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Unemployed Paralegal in Denver, Colorado

18 months ago

designer bee in Waukesha, Wisconsin said: I'm sure he is trying to "Con" someone right now.
That, and shilling for recruiters.

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jenab in Austin, Texas

18 months ago

designer bee in Waukesha, Wisconsin said: Jenab, there are some things on your list that I need to work on myself. Time to update my portfolio, resume and some software skills (more like a refresher). Resume won't be much. Just need to add my latest employment as soon as I figure out how to list it. Freelance, but not really freelance. That sort of issue.

One thing at a time though. Slowly working through my list of things to do.

I love lists; they help me 'chunk' things down into manageable sizes, and some days it's really gratifying to cross things off as done.

The freelance but not really thing -- is that like having a recurring client?

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jenab in Austin, Texas

18 months ago

Beth in Plano in Plano, Texas said: I did lots of job searching but I would limit myself to 3 hours per day... otherwise I would want to cry and pull my hair out.

I have to remind myself to be consistent with the hours and try to keep it to weekdays. This weekend I made a big dent in converting work samples that were restricted by Non-Disclosure Agreement/Confidentiality into something safe to leave behind. But then it throws off my week.

Beth in Plano in Plano, Texas said: This sounds crazy but just going out for a long drive on the highway would make me feel better and clear my mind.

Not at all; it sounds very zen. I generally make sure I turn off the computers and the phone at least an hour before I plan on going to bed for the same reason. I do need to suck it up and start doing more walking, not only for physical health, but mental health. I just wish it wasn't cedar season (or rather, I wish I hadn't finally succumbed to allergies).

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jenab in Austin, Texas

18 months ago

Cheshire in Mississauga, Ontario said: I used to be a very negative person, I thought about it long and hard and decided it wasn't doing anything for me. I'm seeing now how my new attitude is helping me land more work (contract, p/t casual work) but something!

It's really amazing the little things that can make a big difference, isn't it?

I heard someone speak in the past year who's an expert in body language in professional settings (talk about a sub-specialty). She recounted the tail of some junior exec at a Fortune 100 company who kept getting passed over for promotion; the expert suggested she try something as simple as saying hello with a slight smile. I forget the specific term she used, but it's really just a quick upturning of the mouth, just enough to indicate a little warmth and approachability, and not an expression you'd hold for long.

The junior exec dismissed the suggestion as silly, but eventually tried it. Shortly after she did, she started noticing people approaching her to talk, something they didn't do before. Next time she applied for promotion, she got it. It might have been coincidence. But her credentials hadn't changed; how people responded to her did.

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John in Catonsville, Maryland

18 months ago

designer bee in Waukesha, Wisconsin said: 1- What's there to volunteer for as a graphic designer? Not much. I need to pay my bills, not work for free.
2- Most of that will be an hour away from where I live, otherwise I would.
3- If LinkedIn made it easier to connect to others, but it doesn't. Tried it, didn't like it.
4- My library won't have much of anything. Again, small town living.

I have gotten into volunteering during my unemployment. There are quite a few worthwhile aspects to it, But..... I have been "sucked into the vortex" and am now volunteering 4-5 days a week. Truly feels like a full time job without the pay. I like volunteering, but I am spending money I don't have on gas & tolls. (From time to time I get things to sell on ebay from the museums which helps with gas/ tolls though)

The libraries around here do provide free "classes" on various things computer related (basics of computers, ms office, etc)and some other topics. What they tend to teach I learned 15+ years ago. Great for beginners, not for someone slightly more advanced.

Attempting to network when the desperation of not working for years now is exuding from almost every pore, well, people detect that.

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Joe Gagill in Monticello, New York

18 months ago

John,

Is there any chance that your volunteer position could turn into a paid position?

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jenab in Austin, Texas

18 months ago

John in Catonsville, Maryland said: The libraries around here do provide free "classes" on various things computer related (basics of computers, ms office, etc)and some other topics. What they tend to teach I learned 15+ years ago. Great for beginners, not for someone slightly more advanced.

Our city libraries have access to online learning modules for the current basics (office, google, etc) and things like Oracle, AutoCAD and some adobe products. As long as you have a valid library card, you can access anywhere in the world. And as long as you show up in person to get the library card, anyone can get an APL ID. I'm sure there are other libraries that do; it's an easy way to get started. Using trail versions of software, and online tutorials (vendor site, experts sites, or youtube) can help build skills.

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designer bee in Waukesha, Wisconsin

18 months ago

jenab in Austin, Texas said:

The freelance but not really thing -- is that like having a recurring client?

I'm doing a bunch of illustrations for a company. About a year's worth of work. I'm not really employed by them and I don't really own my own business at this point. It's just a verbal contract, I suppose you could say. I saw the job online and I applied. Have to take what you can get and I really enjoy doing the illustrations for them.

I just don't know how to list it on my resume. I don't know if I can put them down as my employer or do I put myself as self employed. If self employed, do I have to make up a business name? If I did start my own design business, I already have a name picked out. I don't officially have a business. See the confusion?

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Unemployed Paralegal in Denver, Colorado

18 months ago

You could list yourself as an "Independent Contractor." A 1099 from the company is your proof, in case anyone asks. A LOR would be nice as well.

You don't necessarily need a business name to list yourself as self-employed. Just put "self-employed" on your resume.

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designer bee in Waukesha, Wisconsin

18 months ago

jenab in Austin, Texas said: Our city libraries have access to online learning modules for the current basics (office, google, etc) and things like Oracle, AutoCAD and some adobe products. As long as you have a valid library card, you can access anywhere in the world. And as long as you show up in person to get the library card, anyone can get an APL ID. I'm sure there are other libraries that do; it's an easy way to get started. Using trail versions of software, and online tutorials (vendor site, experts sites, or youtube) can help build skills.

I can do that at home with a book or online tutes. Our library in town wouldn't offer much, if it does at all. The next good library from here is almost 40 miles away.

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Bluetea in Texas

18 months ago

Joe Gagill in Monticello, New York said: John,

Is there any chance that your volunteer position could turn into a paid position?

I still don't get the whole volunteer thing. It seems that many of these positions carry enough responsibility that they should be paid positions.

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Bluetea in Texas

18 months ago

jenab in Austin, Texas said: It's really amazing the little things that can make a big difference, isn't it?

I heard someone speak in the past year who's an expert in body language in professional settings (talk about a sub-specialty). She recounted the tail of some junior exec at a Fortune 100 company who kept getting passed over for promotion; the expert suggested she try something as simple as saying hello with a slight smile. I forget the specific term she used, but it's really just a quick upturning of the mouth, just enough to indicate a little warmth and approachability, and not an expression you'd hold for long.

The junior exec dismissed the suggestion as silly, but eventually tried it. Shortly after she did, she started noticing people approaching her to talk, something they didn't do before. Next time she applied for promotion, she got it. It might have been coincidence. But her credentials hadn't changed; how people responded to her did.

About 10-12 years ago, I paid to attend a 3 day seminar on this kind of stuff. It wasn't about how to get a job, it was about how to keep the job you have! It was taught by two downsizing experts.

They mentioned that often, it is not our vocational skills that go bad but our "political skills" that go bad and mine were terrible because I just never thought about it.

They taught us where to sit, what colors never to wear, what never to talk about at work, how to form alliances, etc. It was money well spent since I believe that I did avoid a few downsizes because of what I learned.

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John in Middle River, Maryland

18 months ago

Yes, there is that chance. I am at the museum which is trying to get a grant from the county for an employee. Even the executive director is a volunteer, but they are giving me the "hairy eyeball" for the position when/ if the grant comes through.

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John in Middle River, Maryland

18 months ago

Bluetea in Texas said: I still don't get the whole volunteer thing. It seems that many of these positions carry enough responsibility that they should be paid positions.

Yes, many of the positions do carry responsibility. As everybody knows, museums simply do not have money to pay for people. Grants/ donations are down in this economy. The people who volunteer at various museums generally care very deeply about the subject matter and likely have working spouses or are retired and getting social security/ retirement. So they can afford it.

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Bluetea in Texas

18 months ago

John in Middle River, Maryland said: Yes, many of the positions do carry responsibility. As everybody knows, museums simply do not have money to pay for people. Grants/ donations are down in this economy. The people who volunteer at various museums generally care very deeply about the subject matter and likely have working spouses or are retired and getting social security/ retirement. So they can afford it.

They have a volunteer police department in my county. It is staffed by old pensioners who check in on other elderly people: Residence Checks.

Now if you haven't heard from Mom in a week or so, you can call and have them check on her. Course, it won't be today. Ed plays golf on Wednesdays.

I just don't get it.

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John in Middle River, Maryland

18 months ago

Many (most) museums and perhaps volunteer police/ fire departments simply would not exist were it not for volunteers. Of course money is why. Many people would whine and cry about higher taxes to support all these volunteer activities.

Pick your favorite museum. I would about guarantee it would not exist if not for volunteers. There is never enough money to go around and pay everybody.

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Joe Gagill in Newburgh, New York

18 months ago

For the record I'm not at the library today. I've moved on up in the world.

I'm at Panera. The chicks here are hotter.

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Joe Gagill in Newburgh, New York

18 months ago

John,

I'm very surprised that the Executive Director would not be a paid position. The paperwork and all the other responsibilities. At least 25k a yr.

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Joe Gagill in Newburgh, New York

18 months ago

Sitting here at a packed Panera, I wonder how many of these people are truly happy in life and why aren't they at work?

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Bluetea in Texas

18 months ago

John in Middle River, Maryland said: Many (most) museums and perhaps volunteer police/ fire departments simply would not exist were it not for volunteers. Of course money is why. Many people would whine and cry about higher taxes to support all these volunteer activities.

Pick your favorite museum. I would about guarantee it would not exist if not for volunteers. There is never enough money to go around and pay everybody.

I have mentioned my cousin before. She was a big volunteer going all the way back to high school: feed the homeless, save the whales, walk for this disease and that one and on and on. She did it all, even while working.

She doesn't do it anymore but she use to say, "We should feed the homeless, cure Cancer and help Jerrys' kids and if the Department of Defense wants a new battleship, they should hold a bake sale".

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Bluetea in Texas

18 months ago

Joe Gagill in Newburgh, New York said: Sitting here at a packed Panera, I wonder how many of these people are truly happy in life and why aren't they at work?

I often ask myself that too!

Ask the guy next to you.

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Joe Gagill in Newburgh, New York

18 months ago

Bluetea in Texas said:

Ask the guy next to you.

I can't, seems no one is willing to sit next to a homeless looking guy. At least at the library I blend in.
.
.
.
(joking of course)

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jenab in Austin, Texas

18 months ago

Bluetea in Texas said: They taught us where to sit, what colors never to wear, what never to talk about at work, how to form alliances, etc. It was money well spent since I believe that I did avoid a few downsizes because of what I learned.

Scarily, true.

And those social alliance; huge deal. One company I worked for the place to form social alliances was outside with the smokers. If you were a smoker, you got promoted much more quickly simply from the social interaction of standing around for a few minutes 2-3 times a day chatting, since more than half the decision makers were also smokers.

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jenab in Austin, Texas

18 months ago

designer bee in Waukesha, Wisconsin said: I just don't know how to list it on my resume. I don't know if I can put them down as my employer or do I put myself as self employed. If self employed, do I have to make up a business name? If I did start my own design business, I already have a name picked out. I don't officially have a business. See the confusion?

If they pay you and provide a W2, technically you're an employee, even if it's contingency. But it sounds like you're more or less a contractor.

I've seen a couple of graphic designer resumes, and both people did work on their own business name, while still pursuing full time work. It made their resumes much more readable in terms of the full time gigs and the freelance work. I think you could update your freelance work under the business name pretty easily, and it would legitimately help you side-step the pesk gap issue that happens with project-based work.

It doesn't cost much to register a business name and I don't think it's required in all states (it's not here in Texas, but I shelled out the $15 just to ensure I secured the DBA name when I bought a related domain name). The only downside to registering a business name is that you're going to be quickly added to about 15,739 mailing lists for financial and business services, so if you can you might want to get a PO box first and use that as the mailing address.

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designer bee in Waukesha, Wisconsin

18 months ago

Bluetea in Texas said:

They taught us where to sit, what colors never to wear, what never to talk about at work, how to form alliances, etc. It was money well spent since I believe that I did avoid a few downsizes because of what I learned.

That would an interesting seminar.

What colors should I never wear? It better not be purple, because I love purple. LOL

I'm sure there are books on that same subject like your seminar. I need to check that out.

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designer bee in Waukesha, Wisconsin

18 months ago

jenab in Austin, Texas said: If they pay you and provide a W2, technically you're an employee, even if it's contingency. But it sounds like you're more or less a contractor.

They don't take taxes out of my checks, but they did ask for my SS# a while back. It's up to me to report it. Darn it, why didn't they pay me cash so I didn't have to. LOL

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jenab in Austin, Texas

18 months ago

John in Middle River, Maryland said: Many (most) museums and perhaps volunteer police/ fire departments simply would not exist were it not for volunteers. Of course money is why. Many people would whine and cry about higher taxes to support all these volunteer activities.

Pick your favorite museum. I would about guarantee it would not exist if not for volunteers. There is never enough money to go around and pay everybody.

And not just those groups and charity groups; there are often volunteer opps at events, and with professional associations. Conferences are usually very expensive, but they'd be even more so if they had to pay everyone helping out (SXSW has 4 concurrent conferences and festivals and requires 3000 volunteers to run on top of their paid staff -- most vols are attendees who get comped badges for their time).

With professional associations, a board position is work, but there's prestige associated with it, and the networking is priceless. There are often project/events that need to be run, all done by volunteers.

It's a tradition in the tech geek community (in Austin at least) to work on volunteer-based projects just for the skill building and the prestige of doing it.

I do think volunteering is useful when un(der)-employed; it can help you keep up your skills current,give back, network, and get your mind off the hunt for paid work. It doesn't have to be very many hours a week.

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Joe Gagill in Newburgh, New York

18 months ago

jenab in Austin, Texas said:

With professional associations, a board position is work, but there's prestige associated with it, and the networking is priceless.

I agree.

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Joe Gagill in Newburgh, New York

18 months ago

jenab in Austin, Texas said:

With professional associations, a board position is work, but there's prestige associated with it, and the networking is priceless.

I agree. But getting on the board is not easy.

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John in Catonsville, Maryland

18 months ago

Joe Gagill in Newburgh, New York said: John,

I'm very surprised that the Executive Director would not be a paid position. The paperwork and all the other responsibilities. At least 25k a yr.

You, me, and many other people are surprised at this. But, I do know for a fact it is true. I have been volunteering with this guy for about 4 years now. He puts in allot of hours, likely 30+, sometimes more with special events. It should be a paid position..... but isn't.

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Bluetea in Texas

18 months ago

designer bee in Waukesha, Wisconsin said: That would an interesting seminar.

What colors should I never wear? It better not be purple, because I love purple. LOL

I'm sure there are books on that same subject like your seminar. I need to check that out.

I no longer own anything that is pink or yellow.

You also should care less what your boss thinks of you. You care what your boss thinks, other people think of you. Your boss can hate you but its the tribe that will save you. Er, if you are not wearing pink.

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jenab in Austin, Texas

18 months ago

Joe Gagill in Newburgh, New York said: I agree. But getting on the board is not easy.

It's not all that hard, depending on the org and the board. I was on one five years ago, and I just declined an opportunity last month. Sometimes what they look for is someone who gets along with others, gets things done, and will put in the time and effort necessary. It ties back to "who knows you."

I'm trying not to kick myself for passing that recent one over; it would be quite a shiny star on a resume, but at the time, I wasn't able to commit for a year.

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Endoftheworld in Newington, Connecticut

18 months ago

I have a Board position for a small non-profit. It is listed on my resume as current "job". Am 100% certain w/o that there I would not be called in for 99% of the interviews. it is also a hindrance when it comes out during interview and I don't over-exaggerate my limited involvement in fact am pretty "bored" with it and would resign but then I'd have to find something to replace it with and that is harder than one would think.
None of the Board members are paid, they are all retired. am not certain if the other Members, aside from the President are aware of the length of my unemployment, the meetings are at 9am and I am always very late, sometimes missing meetings and I have explained how since I don't work I am not used to getting up before 9 but they all just seem to think this is funny. At least I've not been kicked out, there is nothing in the Rules about tardiness but one cannot miss more than 3 meetings a year so have to watch myself this yr. as we are getting to bed later and later.
I do have a good reference from the President but have not asked any of the other Board members as it would be rather awkward, I pretty much show up 1/2 way thru the meeting and leave right after and so have not actually done any "networking" at all tho not sure they'd be the best group to do this with, one is a retired shrink, 3 are retired teachers and not sure what the other 3 did.

I think volunteering would be good if say you volunteer at an animal shelter and then apply for a job at a vet's and can get good recommendations but otherwise, I know I could be doing trailwork and this would not help me get an office job (i'd prefer to work outdoors 'cept in this weather)

Another interview tomorrow. Got rejection letter from last one today: "you met some basic requirements but are not in our final list of candidates" so I wasn't qualified enough or presented poorly?

Mother says I don't get hired because people sense my negativity, grr.

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Cheshire in Mississauga, Ontario

18 months ago

jenab in Austin, Texas said: It's really amazing the little things that can make a big difference, isn't it?

It really is amazing. I've had a few interviews that went well recently (nothing full time and work that I'm too qualified for) but nonetheless, I didn't over think it, I was confident and was in a cheerful mood. I could see how impressed they were. It was great.

I do have my moments though where I'll sink into a depressed, negative state. I hate when I talk to people and they go 'I don't understand why you're not working fulltime' or 'I'm surprised' ......I don't understand either and I'm not quite sure how to respond to that. The implication is nice but it truly makes me feel like sh*t. Obviously the underlaying question or consensus is 'what is she doing wrong' or 'she must be doing something wrong'

I spoke with recruiter today and she made that comment. ( I know I swore them off but it was from a friend who had success with this particular person) so I thought what the h*ll, not like I'm any closer to anything. I hung up the phone and got upset.

Sometimes I've very productive and positive but it's really a balancing act, some days more than others.

I will not discuss my unemployment with anyone employed now, they don't understand. The advice and comments made are like I'm some sort of idiot. I know everything I've been doing and what others think shouldn't bring me down but it does.

Its dumb.

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Cheshire in Mississauga, Ontario

18 months ago

I also hate all the second guessing and wondering if I'm going about things in the right way. I truly don't know anymore. I feel like its a day to day thing now, I'm not even thinking long term.

In fact I haven't applied to any full time work, its all been p/t contract stuff b/c my success rate is very high. I have to be careful not to get stuck in that cycle though. Its a dead end for most people.

I feel for all of us. I just need to catch a break. I know thats really what my issue is.

In the meantime, I feel like keeping my efforts to myself is for the best (except on here). Nobody cares how tough it's been.

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Bluetea in Texas

18 months ago

Cheshire in Mississauga, Ontario said:
I will not discuss my unemployment with anyone employed now, they don't understand. The advice and comments made are like I'm some sort of idiot. I know everything I've been doing and what others think shouldn't bring me down but it does. Its dumb.

I won't do this either. They either feel helpless or they don't care.

Some people will even avoid me. I prefer that to some of the silly advice that most people have. They have no clue.

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