Notes from the Road, #26: Job Search Victory Tune

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Serving out my job search life sentence is living through hell. I’ve been so sick of this for so long. At this point, there’s no reason to believe it’ll ever get better.

How can it ever get better, when nothing ever changes? The only lights in this tunnel are atmospheric ghost lights, and only a figment of my imagination.

Will-o’-the-wisps? If we’re gonna go for a more logical explanation, then eye flashers?

Whatever the source, I’m used to it.

Some hiring managers have been good to me. I’ll give ’em credit for that. They’ve got some damn difficult choices to make when push comes to shove. I’ve got nothing but love for them.

The rest, however, it’s a whole other story, and I have plans to dedicate a whole new series to them and those like them. Stay tuned, readers. Stay tuned.

I’ve fallen behind in my 250K step challenge on Sweatcoin. I join the monthly challenges, and I usually have them done halfway through the month. Since it’s been the tundra from hell in my neck of the woods, it’s taking me longer to get there.

Maybe tomorrow, I can make up for it since I hear it’ll warm up above freezing.

My job search has been nothing but a disaster. A couple weeks ago, I heard back from a small marketing agency startup, not specializing in the education industry. They didn’t even have a website up, just one under construction. I found a cached version of their old site, and I really hate to dog on anyone else’s website. Therefore, I’ll say nothing at all about it.

They sent me links to multiple personality tests that took me hours to complete when put together, and instructed me to send them the results. They then sent me a survey with dozens of exercises they wanted me to fill out, and that took up even more of my time. I worked on it bit by bit while I was working on this and the few assignments I’ve been able to get through my current role.

That weekend, they sent me a nasty, scathing email stating that they got HUNDREDS of applicants, and that they were moving on without me. This was totally out of nowhere, and I was devastated at first.

I promptly withdrew the application and archived their messages. A few hours later, after the shock wore off, I saw it as a huge blessing in disguise.

If they couldn’t keep their mask on before I reached the interview stage when I wasn’t even an employee there, then it’ll be a thousand times worse actually working for them.

I never made it to the interview, and I’m betting they’d have been nothing but cruel to me the whole time.

My heart goes out to whoever this shyt-poor excuse of a company chose over me. Whoever you are, I want you to know that this company has no right to mistreat you, not now, not EVER, no matter what excuse they’re using to justify it. You deserve better than these asswads, and if you need help finding a way out of there, I’m happy to do so.

That said, good riddance to bad rubbish. The trash took itself out, big time. That’s a victory, right there.

I’m pretty sure I mentioned here that I got an offer to do a paid test article of 2K words earlier this week, but if I didn’t, there it is. I never applied for the role, but they DM’d me on LinkedIn.

I knew that if I applied for the role, they’d have rejected me in two seconds, maybe less than that. It’s happened before.

It was for a small company in the financial industry. I won’t name it, as a favor to them. I’ve touched on finance here before, but beyond that, the financial industry is so far out of my lane it’s not even in the same area code. In any case, I was willing to give it a shot, if for no other reason than to prove myself to myself, and to prove to someone that I can do it.

I had no idea what I was getting myself into. It took up so much of my time that I pulled an all-nighter over it, on top of obsessing over it all day, every day. I hate to admit this, but I actually cried over it.

It took so much out of me, and the amount of research it took nearly doubled what I already do for this blog, but I got it done the night before it was due.

In short, this article fuckin destroyed me.

Halfway through it, I knew that the only way I’d move forward with this role is if it wasn’t paid per project. That’s what my current role is, it’s served its’ purpose in my life, and it’s time for me to move on from that.

I was willing to accept this as my lot in life if it meant a job with a steady paycheck.

That’s exactly what it was. They said I was a great fit for ABC Financial Industry Company, that I exceeded their goal SEO score (I got it in the upper 80s when they asked for 70), and they asked me how many they could put me down for, was I ok with 3 per week?

That was it. I had to call it quits for the night and mull it over.

The next day, it took every ounce of the mental wherewithal I had to duke out the revisions, which involved better sources, and content development in a couple areas.

As far as their questions, I said it depended on the pay rate. They admitted that it was per project, but that if I did 10 per week, I could easily make 50K per year.

If the test article was anything to go by, there was no way it was gonna get better.

I drew that line. I turned them down, and they wanted to know why. The pay structure didn’t match what I’m looking for, and the amount of articles it would’ve taken in order to pay even one bill wasn’t doable for me.

If it took that much time for me to do the one article, then I would’ve probably been looking at upwards of a 15 hour workday (if I was lucky, otherwise probably 20), 7 days a week just to keep up, no matter how many of these they dished out at me.

They tried to get me to stay with the “what if this,” “what if that,” and so on.

I finally told them that the financial industry isn’t something I’m an expert in, and they accepted that as an answer. Payment methods weren’t discussed as of now, but I don’t even care anymore.

They can do with that wretched article as they wish. They can print it off and use it to line a hamster cage for all I care.

Red flag or not, this role wasn’t for me, no matter how much they insisted otherwise. I learned a lot, but I’m not bluffing my way through that.

Nor am I ever gonna do an all-nighter over some job.

I’m done with the type of life where my only time off is my walk to the bus stop or a bike ride to the store.

I’m done letting companies like this get the better of me. I’m done crying over exploitive, pittance-paying jobs, and when I have kids and they get to be that age, I won’t let them do it either.

I’m not upset in the slightest. Instead, I’m calling this a victory too.

When the gun smoke settles, we’ll sing a victory tune, and we’ll all meet down at the local saloon. We’ll raise up our glasses against evil forces, saying whiskey for my men, beer for my horses.

The more I think about it, the more I’m beginning to feel like I dodged yet another bullet. I haven’t found any negative reviews about this company, yet anyway.

This time a year ago, I’d have probably done whatever it took to get them to hire me.

Now? I know there’s a better opportunity out there. There has to be. Whether or not that opportunity’s for me is highly unlikely, but we’ll say it remains to be seen, solely for argument’s sake.

Readers, you’re worth more than a job that forces you to become an nth degree workaholic purely for the sake of it, so some chode can look good to whoever. You’re worth more than a job like that, and even more so if they’re compensating you with pittance payments. If this is the type of job you’re in, I’ll be happy to help you find a way out of there.

Over to you, readers. Have you been looking for work? If so, know that I see you, and I’m rooting for you. Have you ever turned down a role that a company was adamant about being a great fit for you? If so, how’d you deal with it? I’d love to hear your thoughts and takeaways, so drop ’em like they’re hot below, and let’s talk.

Missed the previous installments? No worries, I gotcha covered, right here: 25, 24, 23, 22

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