How Did I Not Go Insane When Being Unemployed? - A Series Pt3.
I find this world at times to be rather confusing. Things people say and do are often not so straightforward and I have found that in order to survive I must learn better to take some things at face value and also to lower my expectations. This is not a negative statement at all, but an essential tool to have to not lose my cool.
I'm old school when it comes down to many things in terms of values, attitude and what I commit to. When I say I will do something, my word is my bond, a commitment that I intend to follow through with. This is how I grew up and I totally understand that every individual has their own ways which makes this life so interesting!
Let's take an easy example to add a little context. So, you meet / text / call a mate that you haven't seen for a long while, after a catchup conversation your mate says "I miss you dude, we really need to go out for a few beers asap". Now, I'm the kind of person that will be "Yeah man, how about next Friday?" and there is a whole lot of agreement and I'm looking forward to going out. Fast forward to next Friday and I'm getting myself prepped to go out and I think maybe I should just check with my mate that it is happening. Call, no answer. Text, no reply. I end up going out on my own and meeting up with other friends by chance and having a great time anyway. This is normal, at least for me. Initially I really let it bother me until I thought about it in a different perspective. Maybe the person is just being nice and making a statement that they would like to go out but cannot commit to a time and place, it is just a statement. Just not a statement of intent.
What the hell has this got to do with being unemployed? Well, similar things happen also while being jobless and without some realisation these small things can actually have a major impact on your mental wellbeing if you let it get to you. Now, maybe this is just me, and to some extent I would hope it is, but in case others out there are experiencing the same then rest assured you are not alone.
Do any of these situations seem familiar?
- A friend offers you a job with their company but when you call at the agreed time you get radio silence? No answered calls, no callbacks, no replies to your emails or texts.
- A friend tells you how there is a position coming up soon at their company and you should call them next week. But when you call, no answer and again no replies.
- A friend tells you how they would love to work with you and to call them next week to talk further about different options.
- A recruiter tells you that you are an excellent candidate and they are going to call you with an offer next week - but when next week comes, nothing and when you call you get no answer
- A recruiter calls you out of the blue saying they have seen your resume and are very interested to talk with you about definite positions. When you come to talk with them there are no definite positions and now they want to create a new job position around you. Then radio silence.
- A recruiter tells you that you would be a great asset to their company but then they never call you or answer your calls but are advertising for positions you know you would be ideal for.
There's more of course. I can honestly say that over a 2 year period I had all of these and not just once but several to many times. How many times did I get my hopes up and call my folks back home to tell them the good news? Every time. Silly me. But this is the point. Simply don't believe nice words until you have something on paper that is fact and continue what you were doing.
I have a friend who is also one of those people who likes to "be nice". A while ago he was complaining to me that he had interviewed a guy who he thought would be great for his company and also told him so. After a few months he got sick of the guy calling him. Because the guy had kept calling him he was also having the opinion that he wouldn't anymore like to hire that guy. The unemployed guy in the end also made a complaint that he had been strung along. Which is true. All the guy wanted was a job and when given what seemed to be a light of hope of course he held onto that and was then ultimately disappointed.
So, if you are trying to get a job and someone promises you something don't get your hopes up until it happens properly. This is really the lesson here.
If you are one of these "nice" people saying "nice" things but not willing to really act on it then please look a little at what you are saying and realise the potential consequences of your actions. If anything, you just added another person to a list of who thinks you are an asshole. Be aware that your behaviour as a representative of a company can directly influence people's opinions of that company. If you screw up and it turns out that someone has taken what you have said as a promise, then own it and rectify that situation as soon as possible. It goes without saying that not taking responsibility for your own actions and running away only makes situations worse.
So, a little bit of a different flavour for this post in this series. These are things that I have come across.