Happy New Year guyys! Welcome back to my blog, I hope you all had a lovely Christmas. I had so much to eat, it’s disgraceful lool
I’m back today with a slightly different topic. I’ll be talking about Career. Just to clarify, I’m not some sort of career guru. I’m writing this based on my personal experience.
I was on the train to work one day and was just thinking about life, my degree, previous jobs and where I am today. One thing I’ve learned in the process is that everything definitely happens for a reason. That alone is a topic for another day.
Nothing Just Happens!
I lost count of how many times I was turned down for a job! It got to a stage where I didn’t need to prepare for interviews any longer because I already knew the questions they would ask me (That was how bad 2015/2016 was). It wasn’t because my interview skills were bad – far from; and it wasn’t because ‘luck’ wasn’t on my side – looking back at those years I now believe that nothing happens for a reason. It’s really that simple, the job is not for you! I’m not saying you should contemplate changing your career when you’ve been turned down for one or two interviews. When you’ve been interviewed about 10 times for the same job in different companies, then you might want to reconsider
Whenever I got turned down I always used to think it was the end of the world. After each interview I made note of questions I was asked, this is very useful especially if you’re going to apply for similar jobs again. I practised and still got turned down.
As I was applying for those jobs and attending interviews I believed that was my calling but sometimes we think we know what we want and need whereas God has a completely different plan for us and I can’t believe I’m saying this now but I’m glad I was turned down for every single one of those interviews because I can’t imagine myself in that career path now. one of my favourite bible verse that has given me comfort in times of doubt is Jeremiah 29:11 which says “For I know the plans I have for you, declares the LORD, plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future” I know as Christian we’re not meant to doubt but sometimes you can’t help it. That doubt will creep into your mind whether you want it or not.
I do believe there is a plan and purpose for us all, there might be obstacles and bumps in the process, but it’ll surely come to pass. This will only happen if you’re ready to help yourself and make effort. Being successful requires a lot of hard work and consistency.
Focus on yourself. It’s one thing for someone to motivate you to do better and another thing for you to compare yourself to others. You’re only setting yourself up for unhappiness because someone’s strength might be your weakness and your weakness might be someone’s strength. The energy and time you’re investing in comparing yourself to others can be used to better yourself.
Don’t let social media lead you astray, not everything you see online is true. People don’t always display the gloomy part of their life, so don’t think you’re doing bad in life because you see 30% of a stranger’s life on social media. We’re all a WORK IN PROGRESS.
“If you’re walking down the right path and you’re willing to keep walking, eventually you’ll make progress”. – Barack Obama
Another major thing I’ve learned is to ask. Honestly, ASK! The worst answer you’ll get is a no and that no won’t determine your future. A no today doesn’t mean a no tomorrow. In 2015, I asked my then manager if I could reduce my hours at work as I wanted to start my Masters. Her exact words to me were “it’s either your Masters or work, pick one”. Can you imagine? What happened to career progression? I wasn’t even asking her to fund my Masters, all I wanted was unpaid time off.
I certainly wasn’t happy with her response but now I’m glad she said no. Her response gave me the opportunity to do more research and explore other options.
Pride has never been a problem with me and I’m thankful for that. Pride will actually block your blessings! “Having too much pride to ask for help” or that feeling of “you’re more important or better than other people”.
Kick Fear Out
One thing I’ve always battled with is fear, people that know me well know “Bukky is scared of everything” (not just foxes) and I’ve let fear hinder my progress in various ways but that’s in the past now.
When it comes to your career you need to overcome that fear or it’ll stop you from fulfilling your purpose. The spirit of “what if”.
What if I’m not good enough? – You know when you’ve been offered a new position and the fear of failure kicks in within the first few weeks; remember, they gave you that job for a reason. You weren’t offered the job because of your shape up or your nice eyebrows.
What if the change doesn’t turn out in my favour – One thing that’s constant in life is change. Staying in a job because you’re “comfortable” even though you’re not reaching your goals or full potential is only going to delay your progress. It’s really easy to forget yourself in a job when you have a nice manager, flexible working hours and decent pay. Even if you know you can do better than your current position, you still stay because you have a fear of change. I understand starting a new job is such a long process but if we all think about that we’ll never make it to the top. Do you want to end up in the same position for the next 25 years with no progression?
2 Timothy 1:7 says “For God has not given us a spirit of fear, but of power and of love and of a sound mind.” This is another verse I meditate on daily.
Passion or Money
Passion is important but so is money – this is just the simple logic I use. It’s about finding the right balance. It’ll be amazing to do something you’re very passionate about and get good pay at the same time but things don’t always go the way we want and that’s life.
I’m sure most of us are familiar with this quote “Find a job you enjoy doing, and you will never have to work a day in your life”. As amazing as this seems, if you don’t find what you initially love, you need to do what you can whilst working on what you’re passionate about. Money is an essential part of life. Your passion can be part-time before you make it full time.
To me, this happens to be university education, however, I personally believe you don’t need a degree to make it in life (well except you’re from a very strict Nigerian family). Obviously, it depends on what career path you plan to go into. Don’t try to be a doctor without going to medical school, you’re on your own with that and you will end up in jail.! Haha
For people with a university degree, we all hope to have a permanent and good job that will give us financial security after university to offset that student loan. I had to learn the hard way as it doesn’t always work like that. I did a Biomedical Science degree and thought I’d be a Biomedical Scientist as soon as I get my certificate! There’s no such thing with some degrees.
It’s really important to do your research properly before even applying to uni. That’s one of the mistakes I made but I don’t regret doing what I did as I wouldn’t be where I am today without my degree or previous experience.
I’m trying not to make my blog posts too lengthy so I will revisit this topic another time but for now, carrot sticks and hummus.