Doritos and Mountain Dew...
You've been out of work for quite some time.
Millions worldwide have been since April.
How have you been spending your time?
Are you binging on Doritos and Mountain Dew while cranking through the newest Call of Duty and owning n00bs?
For a short time.
One of the biggest pitfalls of being out of work or on a job hunt is that there are so many other things that are appealing to do around our homes besides look for work!
Looking for work is, at it's core, a pain in the butt.
It's time consuming, gives little in the way of immediate rewards, and is tediously repetitive.
All the more reason to find something else to do!
We've talked at length about taking time each day to job hunt, and this is another chance to re-emphasize that, but we haven't talked about what to do when we're sick of job hunting for the day. (And no you can't be sick of job hunting after 10 minutes, you have to at least go an hour uninterrupted, no negotiations on that!)
So what should you do when you need to find something else to do?
Go get that dopamine hit. Grab a small bowl of chips and sugar soda if you want. Dumpster those n00bs in Black Ops VI or whatever flavor of virtual combat/game is your favorite. But remember, while you're on your job hunt, it's not only great to have free time, it's great to have something to show that resulted from that free time.
Take this podcast for example. I started it as a portfolio piece so I could show an employer when I got back into the work game that I didn't sit on my butt and eat Doritos, chug Mountain Dew, and work my thumbs to death on a controller.
Showing prospective employers that even when you don't have structure you work to better yourself and create things is essential.
How do you differentiate yourself in an interview?
Two candidates with equal qualifications aren't so equal any more when the interviewer has had a chance to see your latest work or tune into your latest podcast.
This happened to me back in November, the hiring manager I was speaking to actually listened to the show and was impressed with what had been created.
We talked about this at length with Episode 10: Creating your Own Thing .
It's incredibly important as a job seeker to show that you are still hungry, and sometimes that hunger has to be pulled out of the talents, resources, and skills that you already have.
So this is the wake up call to you. Play your games, have a good time on your extended "vacation" but get something done. The best vacations have amazing souvenirs that you can talk about with others for years and that when held or experienced again, can put you right back in the time they are a memory from.
If you need a hand deciding on what to potentially make or do from your time off work, reach out to firstname.lastname@example.org . I'd be happy to get a few minutes on the calendar with you to help you brainstorm a project.