Job hunting is faith-work.

After losing my job a few weeks ago, I told myself that I would take some time off to settle in to my new normal and simply relax at home. Settling in means no updating of resume and LinkedIn profile, no checking of job openings on any job site and not reaching out to recruiters to let them know of my status. Did I follow that plan? Nope. I did the exact opposite of those things. I earned a living by managing schedules and getting things done for busy executives so doing it for myself was easy. I couldn't help it. My last day at work fell on a Friday so when Monday came I began applying for work. I don't recommend doing this if you recently lost your job because it will only add stress to your already stressful situation. Unemployment is tough, so by all means take as much time as you need to gather your mental, physical and spiritual strength because the road ahead could get bumpy.

If I told you I'm not worried or anxious about getting my next gig, then I partially lied. Right now half of me is enjoying the freedom of not being in the office and the other half is terrified of not knowing what's next. I am happy with my life in general and I've always kept a positive outlook but there are days when I get scared of the big unknown. At the end of the day I ask myself "what will happen to me now?" I am getting old and my career hasn't been steady since I moved here in California. I fought hard to get back in the workforce and I know I will keep fighting until I find a job that hopefully will last until I retire. My husband and I live in one of the most expensive cities and relying on his income is not the wisest thing to do. Although we are doing fine and debt-free (I praise God for this daily!), we can't say when the economy will shift and affect the jobs of people in the Silicon Valley. 

Job hunting is my full time work nowadays and it's probably the hardest job I've ever had. It's depressing even though I've only been jobless for weeks and not years. I think it doesn't really matter how long you've been looking for a job. The waiting is difficult. It's frustrating - either no one calls for interview or they send rejection emails. I know I have the skills, experience and education to fulfill the requirements of the job but no one wants to hire me. My resume was written with the help of a professional recruiter but HR folks aren't impressed. I'm not applying for the CEO position, people, why don't you give me a chance to show you what I can do? Why? So then I get in to this dark hole of discouragement and I feel like quitting. But when I see how hard my husband works to provide and take care of us, when I think about our plans and all the good things that come from having a job, I put on my "I can do this" hat and return to the battlefield to continue applying. Dude, I just can't give up. This world wasn't created for quitters. 

Talking to myself in the mirror is a way for me to cope. I practice answering interview questions as I stand by the sink, a make-believe scenario that might become reality one of these days. When it gets too much and my faith is tested, I close my eyes and remember what God did for me in the past. I recall the many ways He has delivered me when my back was against the wall. When fear tries to bully me and tells me I don't have what it takes, I call on Jesus and ask Him to grab me aside, to remind me that I can do all things through Christ and I'm on the winning team because I am His child.

I'm fighting anxiety even as I write this. There's still no job offer when this day is over. I'm facing the facts of my situation but I'm also learning to not take it at its face value. I choose to believe that behind all my disappointments God will come through. I just put one foot forward, take the next obvious step, do my best and watch what God does with my efforts. God is the miracle-worker, not me. God controls time and people's hearts, I don't. My part is to trust Him while He does His work.

Here's a little encouragement to my fellow jobseekers out there: Let us not lose heart. Cliche as it may be but we lose 100% of the shots we don't take, so keep trying, keep applying, keep pressing on to reach your goal.

Wake up, stand up, pray up, cheer up.


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