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Showing posts from April, 2014

Job Snobbery: Helpful Motivational Tool or Shameful Hindrance

Are you a job snob? C'mon, admit it. Are there certain positions or places of business that you just couldn't abide for whatever reason?

Not ready to talk about it? Ok, I'll go first. I'm ashamed to say I've come to the recent realization that I am a job snob.

Exhibit A:

During an early afternoon last fall, I was really dragging. In between interviews for articles I was writing and buying birthday presents for upcoming parties my children would be attending (or hoped to attend if I could just get the details right in my calendar-I'm sorry, Elise!), I decided to pay a visit to what is, to me, the happiest place on earth: Starbucks.

Holding that steaming cup of whatever dark roast is on tap is as close to a religious experience as I can get without stepping inside a church. So before I make this confession, let's get something straight, when it's 2 p.m. and I'm fighting the urge to curl up for a nap in the third row of my minivan, there's no one …

The Many Stages of Job Loss

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Nearly everyone is familiar with the stages of grief. While most agree there are five - denial, anger, bargaining, depression and, finally, acceptance - some add in a few extra, like pain and guilt, to ensure no raw emotion goes unexplored.

While I'm certainly not equating job loss to the grief of losing a loved one, it is still a loss - one that leaves a large void. A gaping hole, in fact. In addition to saying goodbye to your career, paycheck, colleagues and friends, you've probably also shed some self-esteem and plenty of confidence.

Since losing my job in January, I've found myself flailing my way through not only the aforementioned stages but several additional ones.

Here are some of the other phases my husband (and partner in unexpected early retirement) have also encountered (in no particular order):

We're Gonna Need a Bigger Cake

Losing our jobs has been like our own personal Jaws. We've come face to face with fear and uncertainty while navigating the murky …

The Second-Guessing Game

As I find myself still in pajamas and halfway through a layer cake before noon more and more often these days, it feels like maybe it's time to start questioning some of my choices.

It's been almost three full months since I was laid off but more than six months since I started looking for a new job. And, after sending out scores of resumes, so far I've had two interviews. Two. That doesn't feel like much.

As more time passes, it's hard not to become discouraged and question nearly every choice I've made that's led me to this point. At least I know I'm not alone. My husband, too, has been second guessing his career choice.

In fact, just the other night he woke me up at 4 a.m. to say, "Maybe I should have been an accountant."

It's the middle of the night so immediately I thought, "Jesus. Maybe I should've been a nun."

But I can't blame him. I share the same self-doubt. I was recently wondering if there's a statute …

Mind the Gap

Gaps have been in the news a lot lately. First, President Obama stopped by one of the ubiquitous retailer's Manhattan locations to check out some new threads for his daughters. Next, Kate Middleton browsed the clothier in London in search of spiffy spring onesies for her sweet, little chubby-cheeked prince.

Then there's "thigh gap," a phenomenon in which girls/women/people with far more will power than I'll ever have, are either not eating or compulsively exercising in an attempt to achieve a parenthesis between their legs.

Parents, psychologists and nutritionists are busy trying to put a stop to this dangerous new craze. But while I am at-risk for a lot of other things these days (squirrels copulating in my attic, mortgage foreclosure, fleeing into the desert Marie Osmond-style) thigh gap is definitely not on the list. Because, let's face it, not only are my thighs touching each other, they're steadily closing in on my ankles.

The gap I'm most con…

When the Devil Tries to Connect With You on LinkedIn...

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While I don't do much on Facebook (see manifesto below), I'll connect with just about anyone on LinkedIn.

I've been that way right from the beginning. Even when I was working, I was always certain that those smiling faces in my inbox were seeking me out to present me with my dream job. (Oh, so na├»ve and optimistic I was back when I was leaving the house on a regular basis and able to waste money on take-out coffee.) I'd accept nearly every invitation.

Though so far no one has offered me anything more than a "Hey, what's up?" I do have plenty of connections. But to be honest I don't know - as in ... have never met or spoken with ... oh, say, 70 percent of  them. Still, when it comes to the professional networking site, I'm pretty easy. Or I was... until yesterday.

Let me set the scene: I was checking my email as I do every 5-7 minutes now in case a potential employer reaches out before moving on to the 4,872 other applicants. And there it was -- …

The Network Marketing People Have Come A Callin'

This past week I was presented (read: accosted) with not one but two opportunities to join in network marketing businesses, commonly referred to as "pyramid schemes" by anyone other than those hawking their way to the pinnacle of said pyramid.

The first strong-arming came via cell phone from a former colleague who is now selling skin care products. After we exchanged pleasantries, which pretty much consisted of me whining that I still hadn't found a full-time job (a dubious attempt to lay the groundwork for saying "no" to purchasing a $45 mud mask), she proceeded to tell me how "awesome" things were going for her.

Thanks to this amazing company, she was already, "in just four to 10 hours per week," earning more than she had in a week at our former post. Within months, she'd risen to district manager status, she crowed, while I bit my tongue to avoid saying, "When you last saw me, did I look like a woman who cares about skin produc…