When Times Are Hard – Be Smarter!

When I was a little girl I used to constantly tell my dad that working was something I didn’t understand and that I would grow up and be unemployed. Obviously back then I also didn’t understand that I wouldn’t want to live in a tent made from old underwear alongside a river that not only provided me with food but also my daily bath and a laundry facility.

I don't Wanna

Well I grew up and I did what every other person did and I got a job. I didn’t like it though – not one bit. I am a free spirit and that would never change. I struggle to get my ass to work everyday and do the mundane work, and I am a designer, which tells you just how much I despise work, as it’s a creative field.

After I resigned from my second job my entire perspective changed. No longer will I try and shove myself into a mould to please future employers and I would no longer settle for salaries that they feel are market related. And most importantly, I was going to be a hell of a lot pickier about what I wanted. From then on, it was going to be all about me – and I loved it. If I had to work it was going to be on my own terms.

Work For Peanuts

Here madam, have some peanuts, the other monkeys seem to enjoy them!

Now, I quit that job before I had anything else lined up and I was still lingering in the “Oh my god I’m going to starve to death and lose my car” frame of mind. The “settle for anything because I have bills to pay phase” followed soon after. But I stuck to my guns. And when people say, “Reach for the stars” – they mean it (wow, “they” for once did not lie”. Not long after I decided to change my views, I found something that I wanted, the remuneration was almost double that of my last job. The job after that the remuneration almost doubled again.

I want to share my secret here with you today – and please note this might not work for you, in some cases you will be shot in the face by their “closet gorilla” before it will work for you. But heck there is a chance and isn’t that chance worth it?

Believe in what you want and believe you are worth it.
I pictured myself in the job I wanted to be in and I created the perfect remuneration package for myself. That is what I aimed for. I only applied for positions that came close to those two ideals. When a company phoned and I wasn’t completely pleased with the overall set up I would kindly decline. You have to be realistic here though. I did my research and I knew that I had to remain within a certain limitations – depending on which field you are in.  You really need to believe in yourself when you decide to go this route. And do not be arrogant about it!

Believe in yourself - Be Yourself

Be yourself
This is generally a very important characteristic to me, in everything I do, so it applies here as well. If the company does not like the person they see in the interview, you will most likely not enjoy your time with them if you pretend to be a “suit wearing kale eating” guy, just to get the job. In the end it is not a good thing for either you or your potential employer. Spare everyone the agony. You need to find a place where you’ll feel comfortable being yourself. Generally if I get told to wear a suit to an interview, or that I will be doing annual reports using Arial, I jump ship. I am not ready to commit to living in a cold steel box from 8 til 5 every day.

I know that a lot of wise assed folks would argue with me on this one. But it is 2013 and us younger folks, we don’t stay in our positions until the boss finally buys a pink and white cake that says “Retire well, thanks for 50 years of your life”. Climb that corporate ladder. If you are really truly happy with the job you are in then by all means sprout some roots. If you however feel that you are not learning, growing or enriching your life – move on. You do not want to put a job on your resume where either you didn’t grow or you stagnated. From personal experience that is much worse than explaining to a future employer that the position was not what you were looking for and offering them solid reasoning behind the decision you made.


I am currently 29 years old and “unemployed”. Taboo in most peoples eyes but to me, I have outsmarted the system (for now). Perhaps I will join the rat race again in the near future. Perhaps I will continue this obscure behavior – I do not really know. All I know is that every decision we make is in our hands.

Radiate confidence and ensure you have the knowledge and skills to back that up and you will open doors for yourself without even once abiding by the set rules for “job hunting”.

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