Wednesday, November 18, 2009

Totally screwed

The clock is ticking on my severance pay. I have dutifully applied for 3 jobs every week since being laid off, mainly so I can tick the little "yes" box next to "Have you sought employment as directed...?" on the unemployment claims questionnaire. Today I applied for a job as a tier 3 collections agent because it's Wednesday and I'm getting nervous that I won't find any other token jobs to apply for this week. That was a low moment. What if it's the one job I'm called in to interview for? Shudder.

My problem is what it has always been: fear, apathy, uncertainty... I don't want to go back to the kind of job I left. Sure, it had its high points but it was often dull and repetitive and I want to make a lot more money. On top of that I'm afraid of interviewing for another job. I don't like setting myself up for rejection and self-ridicule - it's one of the reasons I don't date!

As I played one of several Facebook games yesterday, I thought "Wouldn't it be great if I could get paid for doing this?" So I started researching video game design and development jobs. Pretty soon I had psyched myself out. I'm nowhere near as passionate about gaming as those guys! One of them mentioned using a lot of geometry and trigonometry in his design job. I've never taken trig. I was great at geometry but terrible at calculus - terrible meaning I got a "B" the second time I took it in college.

So I'm back where I started. This afternoon I called and then emailed the alumni career services office at my undergraduate university. They have resources for alumni but a lot of them are on campus and I'm too far away to use them. I sent off this message to a career counselor:

I'm an alumnus living in the Kansas City area. I was recently laid off from my job as an accounts payable analyst. I'm interested in changing careers and possibly returning to school for a degree in computers or engineering. Do you have any resources to help me? I would like to take a career aptitude test if one is available and I'm open to anything else you might suggest. I'm not able to come into the office, so is it possible to take the test online or by email?

I hope I get a better response to this email than I got to the last one (which was "all information about our program is available online"). What do I think I'm going to achieve here? When I took an aptitude test 8 years ago my results were inconclusive. I was equally disinterested in every career - mostly because I was focusing on the negatives. Now that I have a little more life experience maybe I'll answer differently. Or maybe all of this is a big stall so I don't have to hunt for jobs.

Sometimes I hate the way I'm always second-guessing myself.

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