Tuesday, June 4, 2013

Where's my grown-up guidance counselor?!

I've just read an interesting article npr posted about Georgetown University's recent study on unemployment and college majors.

This article sheds light on a problem facing both American and Canadian graduates and young professionals. While it is true that there is no one path or guaranteed method to obtaining the dream job (right?!) there is definitely information that one can learn, and should probably learn sooner than later. I don’t recall receiving guidance of any relevance when I was in high school, and I don’t even know if there was someone at my university I could have talked to who could have helped me prepare for entering the job market, or work to improve my job prospects. 

Now, five years after receiving my undergraduate degree – albeit in the non-specific field of Liberal Arts – I have worked a myriad of jobs, have no real savings, no clue what I want to do, and doubts about returning to school to improve my prospects. I need a guidance counselor now as much as I ever needed one in High School. True, there are “career counselors” however they cost a fortune that I can’t afford – and my therapist (whom really, I also can’t afford) won’t give me advice because of course I am to have realizations/revelations of my own – which is so annoying.  

Honestly, right now, all I want is for someone to tell me what to do. I’m tired of feeling blindly around, hoping I’ll somehow stumble upon the secret stepping stone to my brilliant career. 

I loved school, I would love to go back – have a structure and purpose to every day – but I can’t help but wonder if a graduate degree is worth it. Seems to me I’m more likely to end up with debt and a piece of paper on my wall than with greater job options and higher earning power. These are the conundrums I wish more people were talking about. Okay fine, there has been a fair bit of coverage on the topic of the millennial generation’s employment struggles but statistics and studies is not enough! Stop telling me about my bleak prospects (because believe me, I am well aware) and start telling me how to challenge them! Where’s my grown-up guidance counselor?!

Saturday, May 25, 2013

"And so with the sunshine and the great bursts of leaves growing on the trees, just as things grow in fast movies, I had that familiar conviction that life was beginning over again with the summer." 
- Nick Carraway, The Great Gatsby 

Thursday, May 23, 2013

Today I worked myself into the closest to a panic attack as I've ever come. (While on my lunch break - I'm super professional like that).

It all started when I decided (against better judgement) to watch this video:

Yes, today I watched the TEDTalk entitled ’30 is not the new 20’. I watched it despite feeling waves of panic wash over me upon reading its title. And guess what? It made me panic. I thought for a second I might cry, and I had to go for a walk, exhale loudly, and buy a giant chocolate chip cookie and a cup of tea.

Allow me to share some choice texts from this afternoon. They are all text messages because none of my friends live in the same time zone as me. That’s a topic for another self-pitying rant at a later date.

     Me: Have you guys ever watched the 30 is not the new 20 TedTalk?
     Me: It has confirmed everything that I have been stressing about. Cue heightened level of panic.

     K: yes I’ve seen it Alex


Then there's this fab little exchange:

Oh man it was a bad time. But it's actually a really good TEDTalk... I'm going to listen to it again, and maybe again, until it stops freaking me out. (And maybe until Meg Jay's lessons take hold and put me in gear). 

I'm not the only twenty something in crisis, right? Right?!

Tuesday, March 5, 2013

This morning I decided I would give my Levi's a break and wear a dress! Because it is March (read: springtime), because I am a lady, and because unemployed people can look nice too!

So I've got my fab Theory dress I bought at one of Halifax's newest consignment shops back in December when I pretended I had money to spend, I've got my burgundy tights that are awesome and a total steal from Joe Fresh, and I've got my now rather beat up boots that can pass for Fryes if one squints/uses one's imagination. I look cute damnit! Only March in Halifax does not mean it's springtime, it means it's grey and damp. Also, I'm now slightly left with the feeling that I'm all dressed up with nowhere to go. BUT I'm wearing a dress, like a lady, and I look good. If potential employers knew how well dressed I was right now, they'd undoubtedly LEAP at the opportunity to hire me. 

....It occurs to me as I write this that there are plenty  of people (mostly ladies) who wear dresses all the time. It's part of their daily sartorial repertoire. A dress and tights on a Tuesday afternoon is not a big deal for these people. I should strive to be more like them. I should and I shall! But maybe I'll wait until spring comes?  

Monday, February 25, 2013



Ever feel like you`ve got a long way to go


Getting my "fantastic new life" up and running is going as smoothly as one might imagine such a venture would... Frustrations and self-doubt abound and I find myself ending my days feeling decidedly unsatisfied with my accomplishments. It will get easier though, right? All of the [baby] steps I'm making on a daily basis will eventually turn into something to stand up and be proud of...right?!

I am re-posting this entry from (almost but not quite exactly) one year ago, because I feel exactly the same right now, today, in this very moment. Well this go around, I'd say I'm generally more optimistic, and productive..ish. For instance, I'm searching through old blog posts in search of a piece of writing I can beef up to include in an application for school. I am not quite sure going back to school is necessarily the best plan for me right now, but it is a plan, and by applying I am giving myself as many options as possible. Tomorrow I'm having my second informational interview with a charismatic young woman who works for a company I could absolutely see myself being a part of.. somehow. It may seem as though I'm in exactly the same place I was last year, things are different - I swear! I'll get there... I'll be theoretically pirouetting with the prima ballerinas in no time, albeit with a tad less grace, but I'll get there.

SO here's to baby steps, and to keepin' on keepin' on.

Monday, February 11, 2013

Starting over

Since the beginning of this year I have been on a quest to figure out who I want to be. Specifically, I have been trying to pinpoint the thing I want to do - the job I want to have. It is extraordinarily difficult. I'm filled with anxiety whenever anyone asks me "what do you do?" or "what are you up to these days?", I often feel like I am making extremely poor use of my time, and I can't help but think that I am not equipped with the skills necessary to decipher who I want to be and where that girl might want to start her career.

I make steps, but they are small. I research companies, read articles, look up school opportunities, and meet with people. I feel very much like I'm behind, that I missed some crucial step or link along the way and that is the reason why I don' t have stable careers or homes or cars like so many other people my age do. But F. Scott Fitzgerald is right: it is never too late to be whoever you want to be. It definitely takes strength to start again, and it is tiring, but in my case what is so wonderful is that I am surrounded by support and I do feel like I'm getting there.

Sunday, February 3, 2013

Oh Blogger, I've neglected you. Let you down.

Truth be told, I'm trying to decide whether not to give up on ol' Alex in Wonderland and start afresh, or stick it out here and just get back into the blogging groove..

We'll see what happens.