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April 20, 2017

Finding the Right Job When Any Job Will Do


I remember a season of unemployment I was in. It started with résumés submitted for very lofty and exciting positions with companies I’d long thought would be good places to land. Within a few weeks I’d lowered my standards a bit and considered some less desirable companies. By the end of a month I was landscaping my neighbor’s yard for grocery money.

The point is that you don’t always choose a job. Sometimes the job…or life…chooses you. Sometimes life demands certain things of you. But in those situations, there are still ways to make the most of it. You can move away from viewing the job as a means toward an end and toward viewing it as an opportunity for professional development and personal growth.

  1. Don’t Be Afraid to Look Back

I had a friend who lost his job years ago who was so committed to not “crawling back” to his old boss and his old job that he put his family in a tough spot. To him, there was something shameful about his beginnings, as though there was no longer anything there for him. Truth be told, a job with the old company would have been in his sweet spot and would have probably moved him even further forward than his months of stubborn defiance did. But even at its worst, he could have settled somewhere that took care of its people and provided steady work until my friend figured things out. The lesson for him, it would seem, took much longer to learn than a brief paragraph can describe.

  1. Rekindle an Old Flame

When I was in college, I got a job building houses in the summers. I’d end up always being thankful for that experience…as it gave me a little more ammunition when trying to do anything handy around the house. But it also ended up being a fallback for me through a series of transitions in my life. Sometimes we spend some much time worrying about what kind of job we should get that we forget what kind of job we’ve done. So maybe it’s a matter of tapping into our experience and finding something that will get us away from tweaking our resumes into working up a sweat.

  1. Don’t Sweat the Small Stuff

There’s probably some inspirational quote we should talk about here. Maybe something about how many times successful entrepreneurs have failed before they made their mark or about how the journey of a thousand miles begins with a step. But instead, there’s a lot of value in recognizing that sometimes the job you take and commit to is more about your work ethic and willingness to put one foot in front of the other than it is about some ultimate destination. So the idea of, “Don’t Sweat the Small Stuff” simply means to recognize that the job you may feel is a deviation from your plan or step backwards, may just be a small step backwards.

It’s true that finding a job is never as easy as people who have jobs say that it is. But it’s not always about finding your dream job and settling for nothing less. Sometimes it’s just about your character and your history. Who you are and what you’ve done may be enough to get you through this next season of finding your way.

Stay connected. There are more conversations and tips for good job-hunting to come.


Family Innovations is the leading counseling service of the Upper Midwest, and prides itself on employing some of the most capable, passionate counselors, therapists, and support staff in the industry. If you or someone you know could be a fit for Family Innovations, check in at #work4fi

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