what i learned from quitting my job with no plan - part fourRead part one Here.

Amongst all the other hassles I had to put up with following my less than amiable departure, I had to find another job.

Less than a year out of university and living self-sufficiently in London, even with all my precautions, I couldn’t afford to live without an income for very long. Especially as my ex-boss didn’t give me my last week’s pay and stopped answering my messages about it.

I had known for a while that I was unhappy at this job, so I had already looked into other places I could get work. I applied for a few internships that would take me back to the academic style work I’d done at university. After a break from school in the real world, I would’ve enjoyed going back to that kind of thing. I applied for some positions with similar responsibilities at other, more trustworthy charities.

I browsed the internet for any job that was local to me.

While I didn’t want to have to go back to bar or retail work, or anything that would look like a step back on my CV, I couldn’t afford to not work at all. I knew there wasn’t an option of waiting around until a really good job came along. In that space of time, I still needed money for food and rent and bills. I couldn’t afford to be arrogant, I couldn’t afford to be picky.

A lot of local jobs I put aside for when things felt desperate. I did want to hold out for something I would be happier committing to long term, at least for a little while. But for no longer than bearable.

I applied for a handful of jobs in local tutoring agencies that required people qualified in core subjects. I applied for a handful of positions with local charities. I looked into work with my local council.

Despite the number of them marked ‘URGENT’, I didn’t hear back from any of them quickly.

Of the positions I was more excited about, I got paranoid very quickly that they wouldn’t want me. Almost as soon as I’d sent off my CV, I decided it was imperfect and that I should’ve changed so much about it before I’d submitted it. Even though I knew the application deadlines weren’t for perhaps weeks yet, I would panic if I hadn’t heard back from them in a couple of days.

Everything caught up with me four or five days after I’d quit my job. I refused to go out, even though I had intended to make the most of the travelcard I’d already bought for that week. I didn’t want to be that broke, jobless loser, sitting amidst successful, happy people with even a little bit of disposable income.

The pressure made every day that didn’t see an email offering me an interview so much more frustrating. Although I wanted to, I knew it wouldn’t do me much good to call and pester any of my potential employers yet, especially as a lot of positions were still accepting applications. Theoretically, I knew that my chances were still as good as when I’d first found every vacancy and felt so positive about applying for it. But, for no logical reason, I was getting antsy.

After two weeks and many dozens of applications, I had received a handful of phone calls from recruitment agents (which I didn’t expect much from), a lot of emails informing me that someone more suited for the role had been selected instead of me and, miraculously, invitations to three job interviews.

And they were for three jobs I would have happily committed to.

I managed to relax. Somehow, I had been patient enough throughout the long, boring days to get to this point. I had something I could focus on now – I could prepared for my interviews, make myself totally ready for them to ensure I wouldn’t have to go through this again.

And I felt so much better already.

Kirstie Summers,

Daily Zen.

Read part five Here.

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